It’s been almost 10 years since i started coaching and it really all began with a mirror.
Over 33 years ago, I was in my first mentoring class, and the facilitator passed a mirror around and asked me what i saw. I told him the easy answer: nose, mouth, ears, etc., etc. He wouldn’t accept it. “The real question,” he said, “is ‘What do you see inside yourself with the mirror?’”
At that time, I wasn’t ready for that kind of introspection. I wouldn’t answer, and politely passed the mirror to the person sitting to my side. However, the lesson wasn’t lost on me, and I began to see how asking questions and looking deeper inside of myself could lead me to greater levels of success in my life and in my career.
So, when I began writing my book, “Are You For Real?!” I made sure each chapter came with two parts: stories I had in life and what I learnt from them and the personal development part which feature questions I ask the reader after each chapter. I expect them to be breezed over to get to the next chapter for the very same reason I passed over answering tough questions that first time with a mirror in my hand. I hope however, that you don’t forget those questions and realize the value they hold in being answered honestly.
Why is it that people have such a difficult time answering them? Probably for the same reason that people don’t like hearing negative things about themselves. Because we all have warts and we’re probably the last to admit that we have them. It makes us vulnerable.
However, when others see those shortcomings, and we don’t make ourselves aware of them, we can be headed for failure, every time.
Here are a few that I’ve posed - while I would hope you would read the book, it’s the questions that are so important to answer as they truly help you get to the heart of not only what makes you tick, but WHY. I call them Freedom Questions because they’re meant to get you out of the prison of inauthenticity and being less than yourself.
Take time; be committed to answering these openly and truthfully. And share your answers with someone who can help you take the next steps:
• If nothing stood in your way, what would be the big picture you would want for your life?
• What are some goals you can set today that will serve as puzzle pieces so you can begin to put that picture together?
• What are the excuses that keep you from achieving those goals?
• What has your JOB taught you about what you don’t want in life?
• What habits do you have that have helped you be successful?
• How can you use those habits to be more successful?
• What habits do you have that are holding you back from success?
• What is your purpose? What do you most want to achieve that would make your life better?
• What do you need to do to re-script your thoughts and your life so you can achieve that goal or purpose?
• Where do you lack confidence in yourself and your abilities?
• What do you tend to blame for blocking you from pursuing your goals? What role are you playing that allows this situation to continue? How can you play a different role?
These are just a part of the list. The questions after each chapter are exactly those that were asked of me so many years ago: What do you see inside?
Again, they aren’t easy, and if it’s done right, they will take time to answer. Your impulse may be to put it off, to conveniently forget about them. But before you close any book on such questions, do the work to answer them, and you might find the best version of you on the other side.