Are You Asking The Wrong Question When Preparing?

question marksI was at the gym, just finishing up my session with my trainer, Karen. Next on the agenda was cardio on my own while my husband had his session. Most times I pick my own cardio, but sometimes Karen assigns it.

That day she assigned it.

I didn’t really like what she assigned and she knows it. She told me that it’s time to start doing some different things with my cardio. She said it was ok to stick with the machines I like, but it’s time to start doing different programs. Basically, it’s time for a new challenge.

I started thinking about how I normally decide what cardio I’ll do. Usually I ask myself something to the effect of “What do I want to do today?” And instead I could start asking “What will challenge me?”

Then it hit me. BAM! This is how I approach planning my week! I ask myself “What do I want to do next week?” Of course I also keep my goals and long term plans in mind, but the basic question is some form of “What do I want to do?”

Instead I could ask myself: “What will challenge me this week?”

On its surface “What do I want to do?” isn’t a bad question. When I started regularly planning my week (or days) in advance there was a fair number of uncomfortable things on my task list each week. Uncomfortable things (those things outside your comfort zone) are funny though. The more you do them, the less uncomfortable they become. They’re no longer unknown and scary.

As time went on, that’s exactly what happened: my uncomfortable tasks were no longer uncomfortable. And I didn’t have a way to check for that, a way to make sure that I was consistently doing something that’s even slightly out of my comfort zone.

So, I have two questions for you:

  1. What questions so you ask yourself?
    Don’t just look at the questions you ask yourself around your business. Look at other parts of your life. Many times the questions we ask ourselves in one area of our life are the same or a slightly different version of the questions we ask in another.
  2. What questions could you ask yourself?
    Essentially, are you asking yourself the questions that serve you best? How can you tweak some of those questions to be more meaningful? In my example above, the purpose of the question is the same; it’s just worded in a way that serves me a bit better.

If you don’t immediately know, that’s okay! Sometimes you’ll need to sit with a question for a bit before the answer appears.

Tell me, what was your old question and what is your new question?

Photo credit: Questions by Valerie Everett via flickr

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