We all have a fundamental question that lives in our hearts, and it guides almost every action we make.
For some it may be something simple like: “Will this make me happy?”
When you are choosing whether or not to have a regular coffee, or an orange mocha frappacino, you may ask: “Will this make me happy?” and the choice is obvious.
But to someone else who has a different question in their hearts, they may ask: “Will this make me lose weight?” and then the choice is obviously the opposite.
Everyone has a question that lives deep inside their hearts. Some may have two or three, but there will always be an overarching question…
The great writer Alexandre Dumas once said that a man’s fundamental drive should be:
“To seek all pleasures that can be honourably sought, whilst avoiding all pain that can be honourably avoided.”
So his fundamental question when taking any action would be: “Is this honourable?”
Why do you do the things you do…? What fundamental question drives you onward? What question will help you overcome this insurmountable wall before you?
“Find your why and you will find your way…”
Not How but Why
The problem then becomes not how you will overcome this wall, but why do you need to?
What dream, what desire it is that lies on the other side?
What fear or pain is it that makes up this wall?
Why? Why do you want to break it down so much?
Why do you need what’s on the other side so badly that you’re willing to risk it all, spend your entire life hitting at it and chipping it away, staring at it, cursing at it, screaming at it to break, only to one day slump down against it old and grey and regretful…
When you find out why…this fundamental thing that drives you, then how is really obvious…
The Five Why’s
When you encounter a problem in your life you should always try to break it down to find the root cause. Because the first answer may only point to a symptom.
“Why were you late today?” Asked the boss in a huff.
“My car wouldn’t start.” Replied the employee apologetically.
The boss huffed in disbelief and marked him down on his next quarterly review for being late.
So what if the boss had asked him again: “Why wouldn’t your car start?”
“Because it’s broken and I need to take it to the shop.” Replied the employee.
“And why haven’t you?”
“Because I can’t afford it.”
The boss’s expression turns to mild surprise. “Why?”
“Because my wife left me and took everything in the divorce.”
The boss’s expression turns to one of mild shock. “Why?”
“Because I’m an alcoholic!” Cries the man and breaks down on the floor.
The boss stands there and stares at him for a moment and then his expression turns to one of deep regret. “I’m sorry.” He says, and puts forward a proposal for a company sponsored Alcoholics Anonymous program.
So let’s have the conversation between Mike and his doctor:
“I’m depressed.” Says Mike.
“Why?” Asks the Doctor.
“Well…It’s not all the time, it’s just in winter.”
“Well…I suppose it’s because winter is depressing.”
“Because…well, I just hate winter.”
“Because winter makes me depressed.”
“You have Seasonal Affective Disorder.” says the doctor. “Winter is why you are depressed.”
“Then I’ll live somewhere there’s no winter!” cries Mike, and off he goes to Rwanda.
This is How.
And you see that once you have realised Why you have a problem then suddenly you have an epiphany, suddenly How is so obvious that you look up from the sand and see the sea.
In Part Six…
So what was my question? In Part Six I am going to share with you the struggle I went through to find what my question really was. I searched all over the world for answers, but it wasn’t until I found My Question that I was finally able to understand my fear and conquer it.
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