This is a question my kids ask me when I come home each night.  Although I’m not sure they really listen to the answer (and I usually say something short, like “Great” or “Busy”).  Yet, it’s a nice feeling to know they think enough to ask.  A friend of mine is not doing well lately and every time I ask him how his day was, he tells me how brutal it is — and it is.

We ask this same question of almost everyone we know.  And, we usually get a standard answer.

But, are we asking ourselves that same question?   What kinds of questions are we asking ourselves?  Are we asking questions that will just breed negativity (or negative results) or ones that bring about positive change?

For example, some people ask questions like, “Why do these things always happen to me?”  “Why am I always being hit by so many life challenges.”  Answers to these questions can only be negative. They are backward-looking.  On the other hand, we could ask ourselves, “What can I learn in this experience?”  “What can I do differently going forward?” and “What am I thankful for?”  The answers to these questions are going to be empowering and forward-looking.

As you can tell from my posts, I’m on a self-exploration journey.  I’ve become a big fan of self-examination  (honesty) and introspection.  I’m listening more than I’m talking (I hope!), which results in me seeing and understanding more.

And, as a result, here are the questions we should be asking ourselves:

  1. Who am I?  Or, am I who I want to be?
  2. What am I passionate about?
  3. What about what I did today, am I proud of?
  4. What (and who) do I want in my life?
  5. Do my values match what I am doing?
  6. Do I love myself?  If not, why not?
  7. Am I operating at my highest self?  Or, am I at least transparent with myself?
  8. If I had no more time left, would I have any regrets about how I’ve lived my life?  If the answer is “yes,” then do something about it!
  9. What demons am I still holding on to?  How can I let them go?
  10. Does my life have meaningful work?  It doesn’t have to be all the time but am I doing something meaningful on a daily or weekly basis?
  11. What can I do for others?
  12. How can I let others do for me?

Sometimes the answers come right away and sometimes they come over time, in not-so-obvious ways!  Allow either one.

These questions force me to step out of my neatly organized cave and into the light.  They make me think about whether my days really are going the direction I want them to.  And here’s the not so big mystery …. sometimes my days are headed the right direction … and sometimes they’re not!  I guess that’s the coolness of it all!

Have a great start to your week!