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Sunday, June 7, 2009

Questions vs. Answers

This is the first of several posts this coming week on Change Your Questions, Change Your Life by Marilee Adams, Ph.D. (Berrett-Koehler, 2009).

"Some men see things as they are and ask why? I dream dreams that never were and ask why not?” Ted Kennedy quoted this line from George Bernard Shaw’s play “Back to Methusala” to describe his brother Bobbie Kennedy—after he’d been assassinated--to the shock and dismay of the country and the world.

Marilee Adam’s book, Change Your Questions Change Your Life, helps explain how questions create frameworks of the mind. Most especially, she explains how questions transform our thinking and eventually our actions.

Many of us have grown up and been rewarded (and punished, Adams might add) for being the “answer person.” She explains how having all the answers is far more dangerous and less productive than having all the right questions. Moving from a position of Judging (having the right answers) to Learning (asking the right questions), creates a wining dynamic and keeps us out of what she calls the Judger Pit…a morass of blame, second guessing, and finger pointing.

This week, I’ll explore her work in a series of posts and hope you’ll join me.

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