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Last Updated on February 11, 2021

36 Quotes From Successful People About The Wisdom In Asking Questions

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36 Quotes From Successful People About The Wisdom In Asking Questions

I was 7 years old when my grandfather died. That was the first time in my short life that I had come into contact with death. The questions came swirling in – what does death mean? Where did my grandfather go? His body’s still here, so why wasn’t he? What’s it like “up there” without a body? Where is “up there?” These were big questions for a small mind.

Over the years, I read a lot, wrote in my journal a lot – asked questions a lot. Is God real? Why do bad things happen to good people? Am I fated to a certain destiny or do I truly have free will to make my own choices in life?

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Strangely enough, I still don’t have solid answers for any of those questions, but what I’ve realized is that as I grow older, and as I’m hopefully getting wiser, my answers seem to change and get wiser too; I’m realizing that it’s more important to ask a question than to rush to answer it.

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Here are 36 wise souls who agree there’s wisdom in asking questions!

  1. “It is not the answer that enlightens, but the question.” – Eugene Ionesco
  2. “Question everything. Learn something. Answer nothing.” – Euripedes
    lh1
    • “The key to wisdom is this – constant and frequent questioning, for by doubting we are led to question, by questioning we arrive at the truth.” – Peter Abelard
    • “The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure.” -Joseph Campbell
    • “The only true wisdom is in knowing that you know nothing. – Socrates
      Ask Questions -Socrates
      • “A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer.” – Bruce Lee
      • “[…] The art of proposing a question must be held of higher value than solving it.” – Georg Cantor
      • “I questioned God’s silence. I don’t have an answer for that. Does it mean that I stopped having faith? No, I have faith, but I question it.” Elie Wiesel
      • “It is better to debate a question without settling it than to settling a question without debating it.” – Joseph Joubert
      • “The best scientists and explorers have the attributes of kids! They ask questions and have a sense of wonder. They have curiosity. ‘Who, what, where, why, when and how!’ They never stop asking questions, and I never stop asking questions, just like a five year old.” – Sylvia Earle
      • “A question that sometimes drives me hazy: am I or are the others crazy?” – Albert Einstein
      • “I think that probably the most important thing about our education was that it taught us to question even those things we thought we knew.” – Thabo Mbeki
      • “A prudent question is one-half of wisdom.” – Francis Bacon
      • “Question everything. Every stripe, every star, every word spoken. Everything.” – Ernest Gaines
        Ask Questions -Ernest Gains
        • “Question with boldness even the existence of God; because if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear.” – Thomas Jefferson
        • “Fear is a question. What are you afraid of and why? Our fears are a treasure house of self-knowledge if we explore them.” – Marilyn French
        • “The marvelous thing about a good question is that it shapes our identity as much by the asking as it does by the answering.” – David Whyte
        • “We learn more by looking for the answer to a question and not finding it than we do from learning the answer itself.” – Lloyd Alexander
        • “My investment of time, as an educator, in my judgment, is best served teaching people how to think about the world around them. Teach them how to pose a question. How to judge whether one thing is true versus the other.” – Neil deGrasse Tyson
        • He must be very ignorant for he answers every question he is asked.” – Voltaire
        • “Being religious means asking passionately the question of the meaning of our existence and being willing to receive answers, even if the answers hurt.” – Paul Tillich
        • “The greatest gift is not being afraid to question.” – Ruby Dee
          Ask Questions -Ruby Dee
          • “In all my affairs it’s a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted.” – Bertrand Russell
          • “If you do not know how to ask the right question, you discover nothing.” – W. Edwards Deming
          • “That is the essence of science: ask an impertinent question, and you are on the way to a pertinent answer.” – Jacob Bronowski
          • “A wise man’s question contains half the answer.” – Solomon Ibn Gabirol
            Ask Questions -Solomon Ibn Gabriol
            • “Every man ought to be inquisitive through every hour of his great adventure down to the day when he shall no longer cast a shadow in the sun. For if he dies without a question in his heart, what excuse is there for his continuance?” – Frank Moore Colby
            • “We get wise by asking questions, and even if these are not answered, we get wise, for a well-packed question carries its answer on its back as a snail carries its shell.” – James Stephens
            • “Whence come I and whither go I? That is the great unfathomable question, the same for every one of us. Science has no answer to it.” – Max Planck
            • “Learn avidly. Question repeatedly what you have learned. Analyze it carefully. Then put what you have learned into practice intelligently.” – Edward Cocker
            • “A good question is never answered. It is not a bolt to be tightened into place but a seed to be planted and to bear more seed toward the hope of greening the landscape of idea.” – John Ciardi
            • “Always the beautiful answer who asks a more beautiful question.” – E. E. Cummings
            • “Life is an unanswered question, but let’s still believe in the dignity and importance of the question.” – Tennessee Williams
            • “We want to answer this classical question, who am I? So I think that most of our works are for art, or whatever we do, including science or religion, tried to answer that question.” – Paulo Coelho
            • “It is not enough for me to ask the question; I want to know how to answer the one question that seems to encompass everything I face: What am I here for?” – Abraham Joshua-Heschel

            And my personal favorite:

            36. “Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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            Ask Questions -Rilke

              Featured photo credit: Jake Ingle via unsplash.com

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              Published on October 14, 2021

              How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome

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              How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome

              Do you ever worry about being exposed as a “fraud?” You’re not alone. It’s actually quite common for people to feel like imposters. In fact, approximately 70 percent of people admit to having experienced impostor syndrome[1] at some point in their lives — a Twitter poll found that 87 percent of people have experienced this.[2] Even successful and famous people like Tom Hanks, Howard Schultz, and Natalie Portman suffer from imposter syndrome.

              But, what exactly is imposter syndrome. And, more importantly, how can you silence it?

              Originally coined in 1978 by psychologists Pauline Rose Clance, Ph.D., ABPP, and Suzanne Imes, Ph.D., the term “impostor syndrome” describes symptoms that include being unable to internalize accomplishments and being afraid of being exposed as a fraud.

              The individual may also be plagued by chronic self-doubt and believe that they’re unqualified for success despite evidence to the contrary. Inadequacies, fears of failure, and disbelief that success is a matter of luck or timing are also common.

              If you don’t address this phenomenon, feeling like an impostor can prevent you from achieving ambitious goals. Moreover, those experiencing these feelings tend to over-prepare or procrastinate — which obviously hinders productivity and reaching goals. And, as if that weren’t bad enough, imposter syndrome prevents you from pursuing new challenges and opportunities.

              Do you feel like you’re suffering from impostor syndrome? If so, don’t beat yourself up. After all, there are effective ways to overcome these feelings in a healthy and proactive way.

              1. Don’t Hide It.

              “Firstly, acknowledge it,” advises Claudine Robson,[3] the Intentional Coach. “You give strength to imposter syndrome by letting it continue to peck away at your confidence unchecked.” It can only be banished if you acknowledge it as soon as possible and break the silence.

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              “Then you need to separate your feelings from facts,” Robson adds. “One thing imposter syndrome does very effectively is to mix up your perceptions of reality.”

              If you can, take a step back and look at the situation objectively. “Recognize when you should — and when you should not — feel fraudulent,” she says. Appreciate and acknowledge the task, intellect, and insight that have led to your success.

              You might even be able to take action by recognizing that the reason you feel fraudulent is that you’re new to a task. “That gives you a path forward; learning is growth, don’t deny yourself that.”

              2. Implement the STOP Technique

              In her book Cognitive Enlightenment, Melinda Fouts, Ph.D., outlines a technique to overcome imposter syndrome using what she calls the STOP technique.

              “STOP is an acronym for ‘silence the oppressive player,” Fouts explains in Forbes.[4] “You need to eradicate this tape that is playing 24/7, whether you are conscious of it or not. It plays loudest when we are tired, hungry, or feeling defeated.”

              Steps to implementing the STOP technique and rewiring your brain are as follows:

              To replace the tape of not good enough, you need a “launch sentence.” “I’m more than good enough” would is an example of a solid launch statement.

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              Put your launch sentence in prominent locations, such as your car’s dashboard or computer. How come? The reason is that as the tape plays, you won’t be able to remember your launch statement.

              Continue to say “stop” until you recall your launch sentence, says Fouts.

              Put your launch sentence into your own words and pontificate.

              While going about your daily tasks, like while driving or exercising, practice your launch sentence so you can recall it when you need it in the future.

              “I am told this sounds simple and it does,” she adds. However, this technique is challenging when your negative tape is playing. You will not want to replace the tape every day while your brain is rewiring itself. “It is these moments you can’t give up.”

              3. Distinguish Humility and Fear

              When it comes to hard work and accomplishments, there’s humility, and then there’s fear. In other words, having a high level of competence can lead one to discount its value occasionally. However, as Carl Richards wrote in an article for the New York Times,[5] “After spending a lot of time fine-tuning our ability, isn’t it sort of the point for our skill to look and feel natural?”

              The problem is that we feel unworthy from time to time. But, as Seth Godin explained in a blog post,[6] “When you feel unworthy, any kind response, positive feedback or reward feels like a trick, a scam, the luck of the draw.”

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              Feeling worthy without feeling entitled is possible. And, finding the right balance between them is critical for overcoming impostor syndrome. “Humility and worthiness have nothing at all to do with defending our territory,” Godin continues. “We don’t have to feel like a fraud to also be gracious, open, or humble.”

              4. Keep a “Brag Sheet”

              When you were sending out college applications, did you build yourself a “brag sheet?” If not, here’s a clean description from Shawna Newman,[7] “A brag sheet is very similar to a student resume – it highlights your accomplishments, key experiences, leadership skills, and employment throughout your secondary education.” In short, “it’s a quick reference guide with all the details and achievements for someone trying to get to know you better.”

              While it may be awkward at first, you can apply the same concept when coping with imposter syndrome. Just compose a list of your accomplishments, activities, skills. That’s it. Just remember Godin’s advice and also be humble and gracious.

              As an added perk, besides being an effective way to talk myself up, I’ve also found that this has helped me stop comparing myself to others. Instead of harping about other people’s milestones, I’m honing in on what I’ve done.

              5. Celebrate Wins, Period

              Speaking of accomplishments, they shouldn’t be categorized as small or big. After all, you feel as if you don’t belong when you have imposter syndrome. So, the more you celebrate your wins, the more confident you’ll become.

              Furthermore, accept compliments without qualifying them and practice listening to praise every day. Finally, become kinder to yourself by saying at least one kind thing to yourself daily. And, give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back.

              6. Assemble a Legion of Superheroes

              “You know how corporations have a board of directors to — in theory — make them stronger, maintain checks and balances, leverage resources, and help advance the organization’s vision?” asks inspirational speaker, speaking coach, and creative consultant Tania Katan.[8] “Why not assemble your own board of directors to leverage resources to help make your career stronger, keep you in check and balanced, and advance your vision?”

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              “My friend Alison Wade, president of conferences, training, and consulting at Techwell, calls her personal board of directors her “front-row” — those are the people she invites to sit spitting distance from the stage, cheer her on, challenge her, and review her performance,” Katan writes.

              As for Katan, she calls hers a “legion of superheroes.” The reason? “I dig the idea of joining forces to do good in the corporate galaxy.”

              It’s important to have a diverse group of individuals who will defend you. Ideally, they should be varied in all dimensions, such as cultural background, way of thinking, and skills.

              Katan recommends that you meet together frequently, whether if that’s once a week or every quarter. “Share your experiences, fears, creative ideas, aspirations,” she adds. “Celebrate each other’s accomplishments.” You also need to both support and challenge each other. “Discover what you are capable of doing when you combine your powers.”

              7. Visualize Success

              Follow the example of a professional athlete by imagining yourself crushing that presentation or project. You’ll enjoy the relief from performance-related stress. And, more importantly, it can help you avoid focusing on the worst-case scenario.

              Final Words of Advice

              While there’s no single formula to cure imposter syndrome, the tips listed above are a start. After all, your success depends on your ability to fight the negative effects of it. For example, feeling unworthy over time can lead to crippling anxiety and depression if left untreated.

              If you’ve tried the above, then make sure that you speak to someone about what you’re experiencing, whether it’s a mentor, peer group, or licensed professional. And, above all else, there’s a place at the table for everyone — no matter what your inner voice is telling you.

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              How to Silence the Impostor Syndrome was originally published on Calendar by John Rampton.

              Featured photo credit: Laurenz Kleinheider via unsplash.com

              Reference

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