Of the five W questions — who, what, when, where and why — we should ask when starting a new project or researching a topic or trying to solve a problem, “why” might be the most important question of all. Answering the “why” behind the “what” reveals motive, and knowing motive brings understanding. The trick is getting all the way to the bottom of the “why.”
For example, let’s say you have a bad habit you’re trying to change, but you just keep falling into the same rut. It’s easy to kick yourself for your lack of willpower, but that won’t help. Instead, ask yourself why you’re doing what you’re doing. What’s the underlying reason?
Once you discover the “why” behind what you do, or how you feel, it’s easier to make necessary changes. It’s also easier to understand where other people are coming from, particularly when they’re upset and lashing out. Nine times out of ten, they don’t even know why they’re screaming into the void, they just know they’re unhappy and they’re trying to change how they feel.
Really, we never get very far past the toddler stage… discomfort, fear, frustration, etc., are still the triggers that cause tantrums. Adult tantrums just look different. We’d probably all be healthier and happier if we flung ourselves on the floor and kicked and screamed for a few minutes, instead of taking it out on innocent bystanders.
By NIKI TURNER – firstname.lastname@example.org