ask questions all day long. Are you conscious of their power? As you
become aware of your natural questions, you may find that they're
helpful or unhelpful; empowering or disempowering; clear or confusing.
Some may lead you to the responses or answers that you truly desire,
some may evade the true issues.
Questions guide you in all that
you do. Some questions you ask yourself; some you ask others. You walk
into a room and think or ask, "What's going on here?" You hear the
telephone ring and wonder, "Who's that?" You see a friend and ask,
usually quite automatically, "How are you?"
Not every question
has a question mark at the end. For example, "I wonder if I'll have
trouble falling to sleep tonight." Or, "Let's see if there are any
fresh vegetables that look good at the supermarket today." These are
examples of rather neutral questions, that is, those that aren't
empowering or disempowering. They simply guide you in your observations.
may want to take a few moments to consider how you ask questions that
lead you through a day. What do you ask when you awaken in the morning?
......when you see a friend? .......when you get into your car?
.......when you hear the door bell? .......when you pick up your mail?
........when you fall asleep at night?
and other internal messages guide your observations. Questions
transform your future. Some of these messages may be easy to hear
because they're audible and part of your conscious awareness. Others
may be conscious but still inaudible. Still others may be inaudible and
Your questions and inner messages accumulate at
various levels of your consciousness. Some are deeply embedded and
insidious. Many are disempowering. Some may have been empowering at a
particular stage of your development, but now are disempowering or have
no impact. As you ask questions about your questions, you become more
aware of their impact and enhance your personal development and growth
internal messages have many possible sources. They can originate in
childhood, first heard said by an adult. They can be embedded from a
perception of an early experience, even a rather non-dramatic
experience. Internal messages are beliefs you hold about yourself and
the outer world, regardless of the original influence. It's important
not to slow yourself down by being overly preoccupied with the
formation of your guidance, only to recognize that there are many
Since some internal messages are inaudible or
unconscious, they can be tricky to uncover. It's important to bring to
the surface the ones that operate your life so that you can decide what
to do with them. If the internal messages are empowering, energize
them. If they're disempowering, neutralize them and/or replace them.
What is the
Question? Is it an Empowering Question?
in pain or confusion often ask, "What have I done wrong?" Many years
ago, I stepped into a trap by answering this disempowering question
when a client asked me. Now I know that all that's wrong is the
The question "What have I done wrong?" returns
disempowering responses. Even answering "Nothing" is unsatisfactory. If
you're tempted to ask questions like this, stop and ask another. If
someone asks you this question, you can help the person more by
suggesting he or she ask an empowering question rather than answering
this disempowering one.
Alternative questions lead to more
useful insights. The question "What is the question?" is often the
perfect question! Alternatives are, "What is the most empowering
question I can ask right now?" Or, "What question can I ask to move us
(me, you) to or toward where we (I, you) desire to be?"
that are Empowering in or for a Mess
are empowering questions you can ask when you find yourself in a mess.
Or vary the questions to assist others in asking for more meaningful
What can I
learn from this?
How have I benefited from this so far?
Who else has benefited from this?
What conditions allowed this situation?
Am I ready for
a different situation?
What do I want to bring into my life?
What can I do now to change this?
questions as these are far more uplifting and encouraging than "Who did
what?" Or, "How did I get into this mess?" Or, "Why did this happen?"
Of course, there may be times you must ask questions and answer
questions such as these, but they tend to blame rather than empower.
It's helpful to distinguish between empowering and disempowering
questions. Either can assist your personal development, but — trust me
— the empowering ones are more fun.
Empowering Questions to Ask
are some of my favorite empowering questions that exemplify the power
of questions. Many of these can aid in transforming disempowering
situations. You may want to select the ones that resonate for you and
write them on a card for your wallet or mirror or car or top desk
me about today?
What do I want?
How do I feel?
How can I share my gifts now?
What can I learn here?
How can I realize more meaning in my life?
What is worthy of my attention?
Where is your (or the) attention?
How is your (or the) energy?
What are your (or the) unknowns?
Who can I connect with here?
What can I contribute to this situation?
What can I give today?
...and what else?
What's funny about this?
What am I grateful for?
What brings me joy in that experience?
How did I make a difference today?
How can I leave this place more beautiful than I found it?
Can I laugh now?
What is my Truth about this issue?
What is the question?
How can I/we be empowered?
Am I ready to receive the gifts of the Universe?
How does God see this?
Who am I?
Copyright © 1991, 2008 Marshall House, http://www.mhmail.com
Jeanie Marshall, Empowerment Consultant and Coach with Marshall House
writes extensively on subjects related to personal development, growth,
and empowerment at http://www.empowering-personal-development.com