By the end of this article, you are going to have a toolkit of three simple questions that you can apply to every decision going forward—no matter how small or how big. These questions will help you make better decisions. A better decision means you will have a better outcome, become more successful, and actually achieve the goals that you want to achieve. This questioning process enables you to cut through all of the noise that is around us now and is building over the months to come.
You need to be asking these questions of everything that you do – and when you get good at it, you will be able to do so on an unconscious level. The three questions are: why, what and how. There are plenty of other questions that you can ask yourself, but these are the three that you need to ingrain into your habits. And remember, having the right set of habits is foundational to A Wealthy Life.
When we were children, we asked the question “why” all the time. Your parents might have told you to tidy your bed and you very likely asked “why?” Your parents’ reply might have been “don’t ask me why, just do it!” and so you made your bed and learned not to ask “why” anymore. Ironically, I’m now going to come back to you and say: always ask “why.”
What we all must do is introduce the question “why” to help us cut our way through the data so that we can identify what data is relevant and what data is important to us. So, start thinking about the question, “why.” If I say to you, “you need to listen to my podcast rather than X other podcast,” I want you to start thinking about why you need to listen to my podcast rather than another. What could be the reason? Why would A Wealthy Life provide more value for you?
“Why” opens up our thinking because it’s how we start gathering top-level information about the topic we are considering, or the decision we are facing. But it also narrows, because in filtering that information and looking for its relevance, we are able to cut out less useful information. “Why” helps us determine whether the information about a specific topic or decision helps us achieve our goals, or makes us more successful. We then can clearly choose between information, data and decisions that push us forward and those that might pull us back, without wasting too much time.
Once you’ve determined what is important, by asking “why” you can then work out what you want to achieve more information about.
Now you’ve worked out why you need to “listen to my podcast”, “this piece of information” or why you need to “make this decision” you have narrow down your thinking. Now you need to ask “what,” you need to start to get more information about, the right topics that are part of your new focus. Because you’ve narrowed your research by asking “why” first, you have discerned between the information that is relevant and the information that isn’t going to support you. You can increase the data that you gather about that specific “why” by asking the question what: “what does this mean? What have I got to do? What’s next?” From this point, you start to move into planning and action and you need another question to guide you.
So, when you’ve completed the natural fact finding stage we all go through – subconsciously– you’ve got enough data to help you form a decision–then you can work through the detail of “how.” Too often we move through this process the other way around: we read articles or listen to talks about how we can do something, but we don’t always hear why we should do something. We might not even hear about what it means to do that thing—be it waking up at 5:00 AM or exercising or investing in pumpkins. Too often, we have got the questions the wrong way around, which means our actions might not have enough meaning and our plans might not unfold as efficiently as we would like.
Why is this important to me? What does it mean? And if all of those answers are relevant to you, then you ask “how do I achieve this? How do I move forward? How do I go to the next stage?” And you can narrow this down. Why is a wealthy life important to me? I want to enjoy living according to my values. What is wealth, retirement, savings, planning? How do I do all that the best way for me and my situation?
Put it all together
I hope you have realised this questioning process is about clarity and about control. These questions bring our needs, purpose, and motivation to the fore, and then guide your actions as you plan and execute your vision. You can apply this to everything; your food choices, your business choices, your financial choices, your life choices.
By planting these question seeds, I hope that you are going to shape the way you think so that you can be more successful, more focused, and find that it’s easier to filter out what’s relevant to you. Remember these questions whenever there is a crisis or a shift in the world around you. You get to ask the questions; you get to decide what matters to you, and you get to choose how to respond in your best interest.
Let me know if you apply this questioning method and what improved outcomes you are seeing. Why, you ask? Because I want to keep in touch with you all. For more impactful wealthy life tips, please visit my website www.vickiwusche.com, listen to my podcast here and here, or schedule a free call with me! I am here to answer all sorts of questions.