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Published on January 1, 2020

100 Inspiring Questions That Make You Think About Your Life

100 Inspiring Questions That Make You Think About Your Life

What makes successful people resilient and persistent in achieving their goals and desires?

He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how. – Voltaire

In just a few words, Voltaire has answered.

Successful people take and effort to ask the right questions that drive them to answer that adds meaning to their purpose.

The more questions you ask yourself, the more you learn about yourself. It keeps you curious and grateful for life and its challenges. Your innate drive to question yourself and find answers will keep you on the path to self-growth and let you take motivated efforts to accomplish your goals.

When you know the why, the whats and hows will become clearer. And you will find all your answers only when you seek them by asking questions.

Questions that make you think are like fuel to critical thinking and problem-solving. If you cannot stop to ask questions, you will never find better ways and that will be the end of growth.

If you want to keep moving ahead, self-assessment and clarity are much required. Having the right questions will always help you have a clearer vision towards your aspirations and dreams.

Here is a compilation of 100 questions that make you think and help you get started on the path to wisdom:

Questions on Self-Reflection

Remember wisdom favors those who seek it. Everything in your life starts with you. Understanding your innate abilities, fears, desires, insecurities, and feelings is necessary to deal with them effectively. Introspect yourself and see where you stand.

1. How would you describe yourself?

2. Do you think your dreams are a reflection of something deeper within your mind?

3. How old do you feel?

4. What are the things that you do but don’t like doing?

5. What are the things you like to do but haven’t been doing?

6. How often do you zone out?

7. What are the things you are proud of?

8. What are the things that make you feel scared?

9. What makes you happy?

10. Do you feel introverted or extroverted?

11. What are the things you are most thankful for?

12. Who are you most thankful for?

13. Who are the people you trust?

14. What do you want to change in yourself?

15. What is that you like the most about yourself?

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16. What one thing would you want a second chance with?

17. Do you love yourself?

18. What is the ideal version of yourself you want to be?

19. What little things make you happy?

20. Who do you enjoy being around with?

21. What do you fear the most?

22. What are the things you think you should let go of?

Questions on Behavior

Our habits, behavior patterns and how we communicate with others have a lot to say about our efficiency in any project we take up. Simple routine habits like the time you wake up every day are capable of impacting your productivity every day.

Getting an insight into your own behavior will help you understand why you feel what you feel, and how helpful or harmful it is to your growth and success.

23. How do you show your emotions — anger, sadness or happiness?

24. Which everyday routine you are better off without?

25. What do you do when you feel lost?

26. How do you celebrate your happiness and success?

27. How well do you communicate with others?

28. How well do you sleep?

29. Do you eat healthily and on time?

30. Does your work interfere with your personal life? How do you balance work and personal life?

31. How do you spend your leisure time?

32. What activities relax you?

33. What activities make you feel anxious?

34. What habits do you want to break and which ones do you want to cultivate?

Questions on Future Aspirations and Goals

Goals are like the lighthouses that guide one’s life. If they are vague and have no particular importance, you may keep wandering the sea of confusion and end up wondering what you did wrong.

Your goals need to be aligned with the long term big picture that you have for your life. Maybe if you start asking the right questions, you will get the answer to where you actually want to be.

35. What are your passions?

36. If you won the lottery today, how would you be in 5 years?

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37. What work would you like to do if it’s not paid and there are no restrictions on time and resources?

38. What’s the best reality you wish for and how does it compare to your present?

39. What do you expect from your career? A promotion, raise, satisfaction or everything?

40. Are you on the job which aligns to your goals?

41. Which one event in your life has been the biggest so far?

42. What would you like to be the experience you want to share your mentees or children with?

43. How far do you think you are from achieving your big dreams?

44. What would you do if you had just a year left to live?

45. What advice would you give to your past-self 5 years ago?

46. And what do you think your future self would advise you?

47. What is the biggest priority in your life right now?

48. What is your biggest regret in your life?

49. How do you plan to deal with your regrets and successes? Do you stop trying or do you keep working for it?

50. What is your ideal career?

51. Do you want to retire? If yes, how and when?

52. How do you measure success?

53. What resolutions do you often take?

54. How many goals have you accomplished?

55. Do you have unfinished projects you have always wanted to be done?

56. How much help did you provide your loved ones in achieving their goals?

57. How many of your goals have you achieved?

58. Did you get to have the time resources you needed to complete your goals?

59. What are your immediate goals?

60. What do you need to get your goals completed?

61. Are your deadlines realistic and motivating?

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62. What will be your reaction if you have accomplished a goal and vice versa?

63. What limitations are you facing in achieving your goals?

64. What steps are you taking to tackle these limitations?

Questions on Growth

Every experience, whether successful or not, teaches us something. It could be in the form of skills, knowledge, life lessons, relationships, and social interactions.

It is necessary to gauge your growth in both personal and career space in every experience you undertake so as to be aware of your capabilities and build your self-confidence.

You should also be aware of what works for you and what doesn’t when it comes to developing your skills.

65. What makes anything interesting to learn for you?

66. What are the things that you wish you are good at?

67. What actions do you regret the most?

68. What inaction or missed opportunity that you regret?

69. What do you usually say to yourself when you fail at something?

70. What experiences improved your self-confidence?

71. What do you think can improve your self-confidence?

72. How would you describe your last year in three words? And what would be the three words for your coming year?

73. What new skills did you learn last year?

74. What do you plan to learn in the coming days?

75. What are the mind blocks and difficulties that you overcame last year?

76. What are the things you wish to experience and learn about?

77. Which decision of yours turned out to be the best?

78. Which decision did not work out as you hoped? And why do you think that is?

79. What do you think you need to improve on?

80. What do you think you are really good at?

Questions on Beliefs

The way we shape our lives is very much dependent on our moral values and beliefs. One who believes honesty is paramount will not stoop low to cheat and lie to earn money.

Their meanings of success would differ from that of a con artist. The decisions you take in your life, the goals you set for yourself are all dependent on your belief system.

81. Do you believe in the concept of love at first sight?

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82. What does doing good deeds mean to you?

83. What do you prefer — live to work or work to live?

84. What do you think makes life meaningful?

85. What do you think makes anything right or wrong?

86. What do you think is better — being the biggest fish in a small pond or a small fish in a big pond?

87. What do you think inspires you?

88. What are the most important things to you in life?

89. What are your values?

90. How do you prioritize your goals and desires in life?

91. Do you believe in networking and connections to learn from peers and mentors?

92. What beliefs are holding you back from progress and which ones are helping you?

Questions on Motivation

If you cannot find yourself enjoying what you do, chances are your motivation for that job is quite weak. But not all work is jolly even if it means it will get you to achieving your big dreams.

Finding a way to motivate yourself through all the grunt work required is crucial to achieving your goals. And that also requires some self-digging.

93. What does the present mean to you?

94. When do you feel the most motivated?

95. Which methods help your motivation?

96. What makes you discouraged in pursuing your desires?

97. What are the things you do that make you lose track of time?

98. Who has had a positive impact on your life?

99. Who demotivates you?

100. What opportunities are you looking out for? How prepared are you to take up if that opportunity arrives?

Remember, the wise never stop asking questions especially to themselves. Once you have the answers, you can be rid of self-doubt and get to working your dreams to reality with conviction and undeterred commitment.

If you want to understand yourself more so as to start living the life you want, these articles can help you:

Featured photo credit: Allef Vinicius via unsplash.com

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Leon Ho

Founder & CEO of Lifehack

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Last Updated on November 6, 2020

Feeling Defeated in Life? 9 Ways to Take Back Your Power

Feeling Defeated in Life? 9 Ways to Take Back Your Power

The human feeling of wanting to achieve more is a shared one and, consequently, so does the sense of feeling defeated. Things don’t always work out as planned, and we then feel beat down and sometimes downright downtrodden.

This feeling is something that every achiever human-being feels once in a while. The good news is that there are proven science-based ways to help take back the power. It’s not possible to continually win without experiencing a loss, and the way we react to failure is what defines us.

There are (sadly) many practical examples—from battling a bad habit (did anyone say Netflix binge on a Tuesday night?) or even an addiction to dealing with a boss you don’t like who makes every day seem like it will never end. It might be other issues that make you feel like Sisyphus, the Greek god who was forced to push a massive rock up a hill for eternity as a punishment, doing the hard work and not being rewarded for it.

You Are Not Alone

You are not alone; Churchill and Lincoln were also defeated.

Fortunately, we’ve found some fantastic examples of ‘defeated’ people who made a remarkable comeback—showing that character is at least as important as talent. One of those people is none other than Winston Churchill. Most of us know that he saved his country and potentially the rest of the world during World War II, but we tend to forget that he famously stated, “I am finished” almost 20 years before that—when he was 40.

He had lost the Gallipoli battle, and everything seemed to indicate that he would go down in history like the rest of us: unknown. However, his plan to come back to the forefront of politics succeeded (only to lose the election after the war, and then win again). He was feeling defeated but he managed to bounce back.

There are other examples of leaders who experienced loss and then made a remarkable comeback. Abraham Lincoln is known as a former US president, but no one remembers that he was defeated in elections for the U.S. House of Representatives just a few years before that. Napoleon Bonaparte was the emperor of Europe, only to be exiled (and then come back and then go into exile again).

Most of us are not ruling Europe or the US, but you get the point—you win some, you lose some—and you should never give up on your goals and dreams. This isn’t relevant only to famous historical characters. The human spirit is measured when it’s at its weakest and in need of finding strength.

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Personally speaking, I experienced a tragedy, having to watch my father die in front of me when I was 25. Less than an hour later, as I was in the hospital, I told myself that nothing would break me, and I embarked on a journey to save other people’s lives with Safe Lane, a non-profit I started to prevent car accidents. It is what we do that defines us, and not what happens to us. It’s how we deal with feeling defeated that defines who we are.

Feeling Defeated Is Not Your Fault

Research shows that feeling defeated is not your fault. The deep-rooted feeling of defeat is validated in research. For example, studies of animal species with dominance hierarchies showed that after losing in non-lethal fighting, the animals that lost showed signs of depression.[1] Other studies suggest that defeat and feelings of entrapment are associated with depression and anxiety. Sadly, it happens to humans as well.

Research also suggests that it hurts the poor more than others. In a study conducted in economically deprived areas in England, over half of the people felt defeated. They experienced feelings of entrapment.[2]

The research also proved a connection to anxiety and depression, showing that this feeling impairs the mental health of those living in more impoverished areas. The clear connection between where you live and how you feel is disheartening, as it makes clear that some populations are inherently more prone to suffering than others.

9 Ways to Take Back Your Power

The good news is that there are pretty good solutions one can use to fight this horrible feeling. Some of them can provide immediate improvement, while others help within a matter of weeks.

Here are 9 ways to take back your power when you’re feeling defeated in life.

1. Write a Gratitude Journal

Once a day, take three minutes to write down two things you’re grateful for. It might seem like a childish thing to do, but investing time in a gratitude journal has been scientifically proven to be helpful. Taking a note for yourself of the good things in your life makes you appreciate them more, and this kind of positive thinking also helps your brain change patterns.

According to a study conducted in Berkeley, students who wrote a gratitude letter to their peers had “significantly better mental health 4 weeks and 12 weeks after their writing exercise ended. This suggests that gratitude writing can be beneficial not just for healthy, well-adjusted individuals, but also for those who struggle with mental health concerns.”[3]

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Martin Seligman, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania, proved that participants who took the time to write about the good things in their lives had a huge increase in happiness scores.

2. Take Regular Breaks

When you’re working too hard, it can sometimes feel good because you’re pushing your limits. Nonetheless, you can’t work without taking breaks. Your energy is limited, and there have been a few studies proving this.

According to numerous researches, “taking a break can be very beneficial for you and your work. Micro-breaks, lunchtime breaks, and longer breaks have all been shown to affect well-being and productivity positively. By taking regular breaks, you can boost your performance.”[4]

3. Find Yourself a Mentor

I’ve personally found this to be very helpful. Every issue that you’re going through has been experienced by someone before you, so learn from that. Having a mentor reduces stress and helps you both practically understand how to handle the situation and emotionally put things in perspective. It also helps remind you that you’re not alone.

According to UNL, “mentoring provides professional socialization and personal support to facilitate graduate school success and beyond. Quality mentoring greatly enhances students’ chances for success. Research shows that students who experience good mentoring also have a greater chance of securing academic tenure-track positions or greater career advancement potential in administration or sectors outside the university.”[5]

4. Meditation and Mindfulness

Meditation and mindfulness are powerful tools that are widely available today through the use of apps such as Calm and Headspace. There have also been countless books written about them. One of them is “Wherever You Go, There You Are:  Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life” by Jon Kabat-Zinn’s. By being present, you can control where your energy goes.

I used to be a skeptic, but I have learned that it’s helpful to meditate when you need a moment. Countless studies have proven that breathing helps build resilience. Just by breathing slowly and deeply, our body knows when to enter into a relaxation mode.

We’re living at a time that makes us feel overwhelmed. We have too much on our plate and sometimes, we’re in a position that doesn’t immediately allow us to solve the problem at hand.

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Don’t worry—by meditating, breathing, or just trying to relax, you can understand what to do by letting your mind some time to think and improve. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be here reading this article!

5. Your Self-Talk Is More Crucial Than Ever

Our thoughts and beliefs can sometimes be discouraging. Many people tend towards a negativity bias, which means that we’re prone to notice negative thoughts and emotions more than positive and neutral ones. This is where self-talk comes in.

Using self-talk to analyze whether your perceptions are helping you or not and whether they’re an accurate representation of reality can help you understand that things may not be as bad as you think. Research shows that this is, in fact, often the case.

It’s a good habit to also remember to be kind to yourself. Some of us sometimes forget the crucial ingredient of self-compassion. It also might be a good idea to motivate yourself by watching others—Youtube might be a good place for that.

Here’s an excellent example:

6. Educate Yourself

For whatever of life’s hurdles you’re currently facing, there’s an answer that someone else has already thought of. Google Scholar or even just plain old Google can help you find proven methods to deal with what’s bothering you. Educate yourself about your situation and learn what can and cannot work for you. Knowledge is power, indeed.

7. Don’t Obsess About What Happened

One of the proven ways to help sports teams stay on track is not overthinking the future and not getting stuck in the past. It’s useless to obsess about what already happened, and at worst, it can only harm your mental and emotional well-being.

One psychological way to think about that is the radical acceptance approach, which is pretty self-explanatory. It means that you should accept what happened and instead, think about what you should do moving forward.

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According to the NYU School of Medicine, “past experiences shape what we see more than what we are looking at now.”[6] So, it’s not easy to fight that. But it is also possible to change it by radical acceptance and growth mindset methods.

8. Create a Vision for Your Life

Another method for dealing with daily hardships is to think like an organization and create your life vision. When you understand your goals and purpose, it’s easier to not sweat as much as some of the difficulties on the way.

According to “Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice” by Francis J. Greene,

“Effective strategic management begins with the organization clearly articulating its vision for the future. The organization’s vision refers to the broad category of long-term intentions that the organization wishes to pursue. It is broad, all-inclusive, and futuristic (Ireland et al., 2009)”.

It is imperative to understand your vision and implement it in your daily life to keep your balance.

9. Stay Healthy: Exercise and Eat Well

You don’t have to run a marathon. Simply walking or doing any other type of physical activity you enjoy can help pump things up and make you feel better physically and emotionally. Exercise can help you overcome depression and improve your mental health. It also enables you to feel in control in some cases, and that’s a powerful tool for someone who’s feeling defeated.

Healthy eating and keeping yourself hydrated goes a long way. Sleeping more than 7 hours each night is also super helpful for improving your physical and mental well-being.

Final Thoughts

It’s normal to feel defeated in life sometimes. After all, we all have our unique struggles and challenges along our journey in life. The important thing is that you learn how to face these roadblocks in your life. Whenever you’re feeling defeated in life, you can start with these 9 ways to gain back power and control in your life.

More Tips When You’re Feeling Defeated in Life

Featured photo credit: Anthony Tran via unsplash.com

Reference

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