We need better questions.
With so much information in the world we don’t need more answers – we need the questions which will allow us to access all the information.
Perhaps what will emerge from our questions will be not so much answers as stories.
“If you don’t have that disposition to question, you’re going to few change. But if you’re comfortable questioning, experimenting, connecting things – then change is something that becomes an adventure. And if you can see it as an adventure, then you’re off and running.”*
By introducing the word adventure, John Seely Brown creates a story in my mind, which I enter through my questions. Questions asked from the deepest parts of my life are the most intuitive: each of us can be an intuitive questioner.
Something else is taking place as I ask my questions.
The more I ask, the more awe and wonder I discover, the more grateful I become.
‘When gratitude does its greatest work within us we are able to celebrate who we are becoming even when we have passed through experiences we would wish on no one.’**
Erwin McManus is writing a story.
Our entire lives are immersed in story; we wouldn’t be able to exist without story. (Think about the meeting you’ve been in today and how you told yourself it’s important – a story. Or someone behaves to you in an unexpected way, so you tell yourself a story of why this should be.)
‘Story changes your perspective about life. You see the future, experience the present, and remember the past in a dramatically different way.’**
I swapped the word gratitude for story in the last quote. When we create stories, we turn disasters into learnings, and failures into skill-building and more hopeful futures. Whatever has happened to us, or whatever we’ve done, everything opens to more when we ask better questions.
If you could ask any question of the you of five years in the future, what would it be?
(*John Seely Brown, quoted in Warren Berger’s A More Beautiful Question. I asked the question of Google to find who John Seely Brown is – my question only had to be “john seely brown” and I had my answer in 0.36 seconds.)
(**From Erwin McManus’s in Uprising.)