Questions are a form of self-talk and thus they’re one of the best ways to have a meaningful conversation with yourself. And thought provoking questions are one of the best ways to change your perspective.
Don’t believe that?
Let me give you few examples.
First, people who ask questions like:
- Why me?
- Why is god doing this to me?
- Why am I such a failure?
- Why can’t I get anything right?
- Why are the situations so difficult?
- Why am I such a wimp?
- Why I always fail?
Those people usually suffer a lot because their focus is directed into negative self-talk (negative questions). And, surprisingly, whatever questions you ask, your mind will do its best to come up with answers for these questions.
I bet that, just by reading the above questions, you started to feel bad.
And it’s not only about self-talk. Questions can shape your beliefs (negative or positive) and reinforce them.
The above negative questions will reinforce a lot of negative and limiting beliefs. And vice-versa.
The first step to change a belief is to start questioning it, to start asking questions. Newton, for example, started asking good questions when the apple fell on his laps.
He asked questions like “why the apple fell down?” the simple answer is because there’s a force that is pulling it down. This answer wouldn’t have existed unless the question was asked in the first place.
Steve Jobs was driven by the idea of changing the world and basically doing meaningful and great work. He, too, asked a lot of questions. Questions that their answers not only changed his life but the world as well.
He asked, ‘Why not normal people be able to use personal computers easily?’ ‘Why do I have to spend 4-5 years in college?’ ‘Why do music players have to be ugly and big?’ ‘Why not change the world?’ ‘How do people know what they want if they haven’t even seen it?’
Sure, I’m not a mind reader. However, I do believe that Steve asked these question at some point in his life, in a way or another.
And I also strongly believe that questions have the power to create big changes and amazing breakthroughs. Why? Because they help you shake off and question your beliefs, and if you used them correctly you can shake off the limiting and toxic beliefs you have about yourself, your abilities, your future and even life itself.
Sure you don’t have to ask “big questions” like the above in order to change your life. The idea is that you ask questions to help you change the limiting (and toxic) beliefs and also help you build and acquire good (and healthy) new beliefs.
That will get clearer in minutes.
The questions below will help you look at things from a different perspective, question the toxic beliefs and start building new empowering beliefs and thinking patterns that will empower you.
Contrary to many lists you can find online, these questions aren’t here to entertain you.
These questions are carefully designed to make you think deeply about yourself, your life and your situation to do something about it.
Go through the entire list, really stop at the questions that resonate with you and think for a while, and save this article to come back to it whenever you need a hand.
The 77 Thought Provoking Questions List
The questions are divided into 6 categories to help you organize your thoughts better and not overwhelm you.
First of all, I have to warn you, some of these questions are really uncomfortable to answer. You need to be more honest with yourself and feel this discomfort.
Sometimes the truth hurts, but it’ll liberate you. You better be slapped by the truth instead of being kissed by the lies.
Let’s get started.
- Why not you?
- What one thing you can do today so that when you look in the mirror tomorrow you be proud of who you’re looking at?
- When was the last time you did something nice to yourself (exercised, prepared a nice and healthy dinner, took a rest and slept well, planned for your future, read a book …etc)? How about now?
- What about your health? How much are you taking care of yourself? What can you do to improve your health?(Health and energy are highly connected to your performance and mood).
- What was the most important (and difficult) decision you’ve ever made?
- What’s one action you can start doing today that will improve your social life (working on overcoming shyness, being more open and honest, practicing conversations …etc)?
- What are few activities that you’re doing that are consuming a lot of your time (and you can get more time by stopping them)? (examples)
The People in Your Life/Around You:
- Who loves you? (be fair).
- Who is in your life inspires you to become the best version of yourself?
- Who are same-minded people you can surround yourself with?
- Do you really realize that those people around you aren’t super humans (and they have their own insecurities and imperfections just like you)?
- What are you trying to do to gain approval from people around you? For your own self-respect’s sake, how can you stop these behaviors?
- Who is in your life trying to define you by your “ugly past”?
- Why follow the crowd? Are the people I’m following are really happy and successful?
- What’s your biggest fear in life?
- Do you truly realize that fear, procrastination, lack of discipline and laziness are going to totally ruin your freaking life?
- In what area in your life are you trying to be perfect? How this pursuit of perfection is damaging you?
- In what area in your life are you in the “inaction and over thinking mode” (because of fear and hesitation usually)? What can you do to break free from that?
- In what area in your life are you doing the same things but expecting different results (and seeing only the same results)?
- In what area in your life are you sabotaging yourself (you have what it takes, and you know it, but you’re still screwing up yourself)?
- In what area in your life are you being impatient (and expecting very fast, or even immediate, results)?
- What is the one thing that you’ve been putting off lately (and is causing you mood swings because you’re running away from it)? (hint: identify it to deal with it immediately)
- Are you trying to control things that are out of your control? Honestly?
- Who are you comparing yourself to in an unfair way? (you just started and he/she has been doing this for a long time. Of course, he/she is going to better and more experienced).
- What distractions can you cut out of your life to become more focused on what you really want?
- What is one thing that is sucking your mental and/or physical energy (certain people usually, unnecessary conversations …etc)? What can you do to solve that?
- Do you have an unproductive routine in your life? (Routines kills productivity and growth chances).
- Do you realize that media (music, movies, articles, books or whatever goes inside your mind) has a great impact on your ideas, belief and thus your behavior (and even your mood)? How can you use that to your advantages (and stop it from damaging you)?
- What are the things that are holding you back from achieving your full potential? (bad habits, behaviors, beliefs …etc).
- What can you really do to liberate yourself from these things?
- What bad labels do you put on yourself on a daily basis (I’m stupid, I’m such a wimp …etc)? Do you truly realize how harmful this can be and why you should stop doing it?
- What are you grateful for (or what could you be grateful for)?
What Do You Really Want Out of Life?
- What makes you excited? Really?
- What can keep you up all night working on it even though you’re totally exhausted?
- What’s the most important thing to you at the current moment?
- How are you keeping yourself from achieving/reaching that thing?
- How would you act if you were 100% sure that your life would get better (and that you would reach your biggest goal)?
- What book, article or quote you’ve recently read that really inspired you? What book, article or quote can you read to get inspired and charged up?
- What do you really want to be good at (what do you want to master/learn)?
- When was the last time you’ve lost the sense of time? What were you doing?
- What is the bravest thing you’ve ever done in your life? (even though your heart was racing, you did it anyway)
- What’s your definition of success?
- How can you achieve that?
- What is your definition of love (what does it mean to you to be loved)?
- How can you achieve that? (remember not to try to control what you can’t control).
- What really drives you in life (money, family, freedom, the idea of fighting for your dreams, the idea of changing the world and making it a better place …etc)?
- What one important lesson can you learn from the last mistake you’ve made?
- What’s one thing that when you think of it you say to yourself “there’s something worth living for”?
The Harsh, Painful and Ugly Truths:
- What is your favorite method to escape your problems? (Facebook, YouTube, porn, drugs, sleeping, eating, being social, T.v …etc).
- What bad emotions are you experiencing as a result of escaping your problems?
- Is your life better after escaping your problems and running away from negative emotions?
- Ain’t you sick enough yet?
- What’s one thing you can do today to start facing your biggest life’s problems? (Maybe just the decision to never escape anymore).
- What are you lying to yourself about? What are you trying to hide from yourself? (before mentioning the problems).
- Are you waiting for someone to come around and save you? Or for something to suddenly happen and change your life?
- What if there was no “next time”? What if it’s “now or never”?
- Who said it’s going to be easy?!
- Are you willing to make few sacrifices in order to reach where you want to reach?
- Do you want something for nothing? Honestly?
- If today is the last day in your life, would you be proud of who you are today?
- If today was the last day in your life, would be happy doing what you’re about to do today?
- If you can face one fear today and push through it, what would it be? And how would your life benefit from that?
- How does it feel after doing something extremely difficult and scary? Are you feeling proud, confident and excited?
- Imagine yourself living the kind of life that you hate. Imagine every minute and every hour. Imagine waking up every day to live a life that you don’t like. How that makes you feel? Are you willing to live like that for the rest of your life?
- Imagine you’ve given up today, how are you going to feel about yourself when you look into the mirror a few years from now?
- If you can face your biggest fear today, and liberate yourself from it, how would your life become? And how would you feel about yourself?
- Why not?
- What another way to look at the same situation?
- What can you do differently this time?
- What can I learn here?
- Couldn’t something different happen this time when you try?
- What different questions can you ask to get different (and better) answers?
- Who has gone through this situation successfully before? What did he/she do?
- How can you get help here (reading books, or articles like this 🙂 , asking someone, group support, faith and help from god …etc)?
- Is this is all there is?
- Do you really realize that whatever pain you’re going through right now, that you’re not the only one in the world who is going through some pain and difficult times?
- Instead of saying to yourself “I should’ve done that/I shouldn’t have done that”, why not say “What can I do now?”(feelings of guilt and shame can be more destructive than the mistakes)
Was that helpful? You can also read:
- How to Be Confident: 25 Professional Tips That Really Work
- I Feel Nothing: A Brief Guide on Emotional Numbness
- Replacing Bad Habits With Good Ones (The Right Way)