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Answer These Riddles and You Will Find the Answers to Life

Answer These Riddles and You Will Find the Answers to Life

Looking for deeper meaning, trying to find patterns in everything, eager to answer life’s riddles—it is this curiosity and hunger for knowledge that has gotten us to where we are now as a species. We have built an advanced civilization by coming up with solutions to problems, and even though we may be somewhat complacent at this stage of our history, there are still a lot of little questions that every person needs to answer throughout his or her life in order to find that unique brand of happiness that will be slightly different for each of us.

As I am a big fan of the Socratic method, I will play a benevolent Riddler and give you a list of brain-teasers that, when answered and understood, will help you come closer to finding answers to much deeper issues. Oh, and trust me, learning how to apply any of this knowledge in real life, day to day, will be the true challenge you’ll have to face. There will be enough space between each riddle and its answer to allow you to think it over and do some guessing before you scroll down, so take your time.

Riddle 1

Journey without it and you will never prevail, but if you have too much of it you will surely fail.

Journey

    Answer: Confidence

    While there are plenty of those who lack the confidence to stand up for themselves and seize opportunities, there are also plenty of people out there who overestimate their abilities and bite off more than they can chew. To ensure a reasonable level of happiness in life and achieve as much as you can, you have to live between these extremes and learn to strike the right balance between the different values that you govern yourself by.

    Riddle 2

    Poor people have it. Rich people need it. It can make you or break you.

    Rich vs poor

      Answer: Adversity

      Steel is hardened by being exposed to the roaring fires of a furnace and then cooled down, and so too is the human spirit hardened by adversity. The rich and privileged lack it and often become spoiled, with a warped view of reality and a childish ignorance of the ways of the world. However, if a person faces numerous hardships without the ability to cool down and recover, his or her spirit can be broken or they can become bitter and jaded. You need to live through some tough times to get a respect for life and hone those survival skills, but remember that there are also those whose hardships have taken them to a dangerous place—beware of such people.

      Riddle 3

      Everyone wants more of it to feel special, yet the more you have of it the less special you feel.

      Feel Special

        Answer: Knowledge

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        Ah, to be young and foolish is a wonderful thing. You think you know everything, that you are indestructible and have life all figured out, then as you get older and wiser, and delve much deeper into certain subjects, you suddenly realize just how much more there is to know. It can take people an entire lifetime to truly master a skill or acquire detailed knowledge on a topic, and there are just too many skills and topics for any one person to cover in several lifetimes. Understanding this makes you humble, and it also makes you question people who think they have all the answers.

        Riddle 4

        If you have me, you want to share me. If you share me, you haven’t got me. What am I?

        Sharing

          Answer: Secret

          Some people fail to grasp the true importance of secrets. From a moral standpoint, they help you avoid lying, but at the same time allow you to protect your privacy and the privacy of those close to you. There is an urge to gossip and spread interesting information that we as humans are born with, but it has to be controlled. Little facts that only a few people know help strengthen the bonds of friendship and love between them—protecting someone’s secret in this day and age is nearly as brave and noble as protecting them from a wild animal.

          Riddle 5

          You can only have it once you have given it.

          Giving

            Answer: Respect

            One of the most misunderstood concepts out there, respect is asked for yet seldom given. Some even try to take it by force or buy it, but if you are unable to show others respect and treat them as equals you will never be able to truly earn their respect. People respect bravery, intelligence, skill, talent, compassion and physical and mental strength, and these things cannot be faked.

            Riddle 6

            Imagine you are in a dark room. How do you get out?

            Candlelight in darkness

              Answer: Stop imagining it

              There is something to be said about the destructiveness of self-fulfilling prophecies that people regularly impose upon themselves. When every hint of trouble is immediately viewed as a disaster and any attempt at remedying a situation is brushed aside with “What’s the point? It will never work,” then what chance do we stand when things really go bad? It is important not to give up before the battle has even begun, and to avoid taking yourself to that dark and lonely place all the time. A little positivity and determination will go a long way.

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              Riddle 7

              What is always coming but never arrives?

              Coming Soon

                Answer: Tomorrow

                Procrastination is born out of laziness and the fear of making changes, and it is the biggest dream killer out there. If you keep rescheduling important things for tomorrow, Monday or next month, you’ll stay in the same place as the world keeps moving on without you. Some 20-30 minutes here, an hour or two there, it’s not much time to invest in bettering yourself and if you keep doing it every day you will reap huge benefits. Don’t wait for tomorrow, do what needs to be done right now.

                Riddle 8

                 At night they come without being fetched. By day they are lost without being stolen.

                Mostly at night

                  Answer: Doubts and fears

                  That old piece of advice given by our elders: “sleep on it”, is as simple as it is absolutely brilliant. At night before sleep we are at our most vulnerable, even if we have someone to hold tight. Those nagging doubts come creeping in, our insecurities and fears start eating away at our mind, and that self-critical voice gets a bit louder as the room goes quiet. However, after a good night’s sleep, as we wake up and let some sunshine into the room, get some fresh coffee and tasty food in our system, those troubled thoughts seem miles away. This is a much better time for talking things over, making big decisions and important phone calls.

                  Riddle 9

                  A prison you feel safe in, yet never quite happy. Whenever you try to leave, it only grows bigger.

                  Prison

                    Answer: Your comfort zone

                    The feeling of safety we get when we hide in our little comfort zone is a false one, and the lack of initiative will eventually lead to us feeling miserable. In order to improve we have to be willing to try new things, throw ourselves into uncomfortable situations and learn to cope with them over time. As we become comfortable with different situations and become proficient in a variety of additional skills, that comfort zone will keep expanding, and we will constantly need to keep running beyond its edges.

                    Riddle 10

                    If you break me I do not stop working; if you touch me I may be snared; if you lose me nothing will matter.

                    Clockwork mechanism

                      Answer: Your heart

                      Letting someone get close, reach in and touch our heart is an exhilarating and frightening experience at the same time. There are plenty of people out there, more than enough for everyone to find a great match. In fact, you may find a good match several times over, and just as your heart breaks it will also mend and be ready to be touched again. However, if you lose that empathy that makes you a decent human being, life will become bleak and meaningless, so keep your heart somewhere safe and nurture it.

                      Riddle 11

                      It starts off light and easy to bear, yet the more you carry it with you, the heavier a burden it becomes.

                      Heavy burden

                        Answer: A guilty conscience

                        We sometimes make rash decisions, especially when we are young and full of raging hormones, and even when we know we did wrong we manage to rationalize things and convince ourselves that we did nothing wrong or that we have no choice. The thing is, you can only keep justifying your actions for so long before your conscience starts eating away at you. This is why many people living a dangerous lifestyle, be they thugs or soldiers and cops, burn out and turn to alcohol or drugs. Abide by a code of ethics you have adopted at all times, and you will stay in good mental health.

                        Riddle 12

                        I do not listen to reason, but I hear every siren’s song and will try to steer us towards the rocks if you let me take the wheel. Who am I?

                        Siren

                          Answer: Ego

                          When you let your ego take over it’s very easy to take offense at the slightest insult, start shouting matches with people, try to show off and injure yourself at the gym, bite off more than you can chew and ruin relationships. It is only concerned with preserving your perceived social status and will quickly turn you into a drooling Neanderthal, and this goes for both men and women. When you walk out of the house it’s best to leave your ego at home – you don’t have to prove anything to anybody as long as you have a good sense of self-worth and are surrounded by people who understand and respect you.

                          Riddle 13

                          One by one we fall from heaven down into the depths of past, and our world is ever upturned so that yet some time we’ll last.

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                          Fallen angel

                            Answer: Dreams and aspirations

                            The way we see ourselves will change over time, and some of the dreams we had and the goals we set will be left behind. However, as our worldview and personality changes, new dreams and aspirations emerge, which is a perfectly normal and healthy part of maturing. We are not giving up who we are, we are just evolving into an improved version of that same person, and knowing this allows us to let go of the past.

                            Riddle 14

                            A mile from end to end, yet as close to as a friend. A precious commodity, freely given. Found on the rich, poor, short and tall, but shared among children most of all. What is it?

                            PENTAX Image

                              Answer: A smile

                              This simple little thing really becomes a precious commodity once you get older. A lot of people suffer from anxiety and depression, and most of us spend a good part of the week under constant stress. We forget to smile sincerely, from the bottom of our heart like the carefree children we once were. This is why time spent with close family and friends becomes so precious. We need to remember how to open our eyes to the beauty and hilarity of the world around us, and smile more.

                              Riddle 15

                              We hurt without moving. We poison without touching. We bear the truth and the lies. We are not to be judged by our size. What are we?

                                Answer: Words

                                Our words can have an incredible effect on others. They can cause pain and sorrow, bring joy and laughter, make people uncomfortable, educate or offend. A lot of people don’t really think about the words they use, but we should all choose our words more carefully. Just a few inappropriate words uttered in the wrong moment can change our lives forever, and it is up to us to learn to communicate more tactfully so that we can dictate the outcome of such situations, rather than let our emotions get the better of us.

                                Spend a few minutes pondering these riddles and try to think about a moment in your life that could serve as an example for any of the points covered here. Feel free to dissect each of the riddles and come back to them again after you’ve had them running around in your head for a day or two.

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                                Ivan Dimitrijevic

                                Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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                                Last Updated on May 21, 2019

                                How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

                                How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

                                For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

                                If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

                                Example 1

                                You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

                                You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

                                In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

                                Example 2

                                You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

                                People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

                                You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

                                Example 3

                                You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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                                The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

                                Example 4

                                You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

                                Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

                                If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

                                Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

                                • Understand your own communication style
                                • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
                                • Communicate with precision and care
                                • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

                                1. Understand Your Communication Style

                                To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

                                In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

                                Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

                                2. Learn Others Communication Styles

                                Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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                                If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

                                “How do you prefer to receive information?”

                                This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

                                To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

                                3. Exercise Precision and Care

                                A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

                                On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

                                Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

                                I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

                                I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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                                In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

                                The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

                                Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

                                4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

                                Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

                                In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

                                “Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

                                Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

                                Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

                                It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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                                It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

                                It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

                                Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

                                Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

                                The Bottom Line

                                When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

                                I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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                                Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

                                Reference

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