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Question Quotes 2

Question Quotes 2

My goal was to put a question-related quote on every page of my book, 1,001 Real-Life Questions for Women – but it turns out that good, relevant quotes are more difficult to come by than you might think. As a result, there’s one quote about every fourth page. All quotes in the actual book are related to the process of asking questions, but I’ve been a little less stringent with the quotes for Twitter and the Facebook group. For Twitter and Facebook, I included the quote if it simply contained the word “question.”

Once a week, I’ll share a few question-related quotes from all of the above-mentioned sources.

Here we go with more quotes about questions!

“Hypothetical questions get
hypothetical answers.”
~Joan Baez

“It is the nature, and the advantage, of strong people that they can bring out the crucial questions and form a clear opinion about them. The weak always have to decide between alternatives that are not their own.”
~Dietrich Bonhoeffer

“Every scientific fulfillment raises new questions; it asks to be surpassed and outdated.”
~Max Weber

“I wish I had an answer to that because I’m tired of answering that question.”
~Yogi Berra

“To be or not to be — that is the question.”
~Shakespeare

PREVIOUS QUESTION QUOTES

Please visit the Web site to download a sampler with 40 random questions from the book. And mark your calendar for Tuesday, November 30,  for our big VIRTUAL LAUNCH PARTY. Experience first-hand the power of a discussion group with other smart women. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.

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#559 Have you ever refinished/restored something you found at a yard sale or a flea market?

#559 Have you ever built something from recycled goods? Refinished/
            restored something
you found at a yard sale or a flea market?

People seem to break into one of two categories on this topic: (1) those who prefer everything shiny and new (if that’s you, this topic may not be for you), and (2) antique lovers who cherish the charm and history of old houses, furniture, clothing, cars, and more. If you fall into the latter category, your answer to this question is likely an unqualified, “Yes!”

iVillage writer, Mary Kate Frank, has a very practical approach to the idea of refinishing flea market/swapmeet finds: 

How many times have you been advised (by well-meaning magazine articles and Web sites and maybe even crafty friends) to freshen up a piece of flea market furniture by refinishing it? It’s a great idea, but is it really that easy? Alas, I have a feeling, judging by the description of this furniture refinishing class that I recently signed up for, that it is not. But I’m determined to find out.

Ginny Figler Colon makes the great point that reclaiming furniture is the epitome of green living. She offers tips for safe green ways to restore used furniture.

Anyone seeking inspiration for decorating with reclaimed pieces need look no further than Mary Randolph Carter’s delightful series of books on the “junk” theme:

And for those who are supremely inspired to get into the restoration game, the world-famous Brimfield Antique and Collectibles Show takes place three times a year in Brimfield, Massachusetts (about 1 hour west of Boston). The 2011 dates are

May 10-15    July 12-17     September 6-11

There’s nothing wrong with preferring to be the first owner/wearer/user of your treasures. But if you love the idea of bringing new life to old items, restoring/refinishing may be the route for you.

If you want to know MY answer to this question, you’ll have to visit the 1001RLQFW membership site and click on the Forum. There, you can add your responses and compare notes with others!

In the meantime, please tune in tomorrow, November 16, when Therese Skelly and I will be hosting In All Honesty – a teleconference with two experts speaking on the topics of question-asking and journaling as powerful tools for self-development. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.

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Questions Can Help Diffuse Our Sense of “Otherness”

Questions Can Help Diffuse Our Sense of “Otherness”

Was thinking the other day how interesting it is that, no matter who we are, we tend to surround ourselves with other people like us. We group ourselves by all manner of descriptors, but when it comes right down to it, our human nature makes us most comfortable with people who are similar to us.

We self select myriad ways: Intellect. Politics. Income. Gender. Sexual orientation. Religious affiliation. Celebrity status. Urban or rural settings.

We – or others – give ourselves names: Rednecks. Goths. Mensans. Recovering. Soccer moms. Birthmothers.

We hang out with others in our chosen professions: Doctors. Lawyers. Realtors. Accountants. Writers. Cops. Stay-at-home moms.

All this division definitely serves a purpose. Those who are like us understand us. They share our issues and challenges, and often, they are the first ones with whom we want to celebrate our successes.

The problem arises, however, when we become so insulated within our self-identified groups or roles that we forget how to interact with those who belong to other groups, people outside of our close-knit circles. Sometimes, that otherness leads to an irrational fear. In their paper, “Scary Cities: Urban Geographies of Fear, Difference and Belonging,” Marcia R. Simon and Stephanie Simon write: “Looking at aspects such as gendered, aged and sexualized geographies of fear, urban researchers have noted that fear of the city is often related to discourses surrounding those who are seen as different in social contexts (Madge 1997; Pain 2001; Shirlow and Pain 2003; Valentine 1992).”

Problems arise when we start becoming fearful of the other. We become distrustful. We worry about protecting what’s ours – afraid that “they” may come and try to take it from us. We become incapable of level-headed dialogue, devolving instead into name-calling and ugly epithets. We have no room to entertain the other’s opinion, justified in our certainty that because they’re who they are, they’re just plain wrong.

What if we could change that thinking? What if, for one minute, we were to stop viewing the others as other, and began looking, instead, for our common ground, our similarities?

“I have absolutely nothing in common with that person,” we may want to dig in and hold tightly to our otherness. But that’s not true, is it? There are lots of things virtually all of us have in common:

  • We breathe air, involuntarily.
  • We eat food and drink water.
  • We were born and have or had parents.
  • We walk and talk and sit and speak.
  • We laugh when we’re happy and cry when we’re sad.
  • Our bodies are made up of chromosomes and DNA.
  • Our hearts pump blood through every complex cell.

And once we get past those general similarities, we can certainly find others: We have jobs. We love our families. We want to be happy.

Once we can start to find ways to connect, the otherness begins to break down. Yes – that person from another country with odd customs and funny clothing is still different, but we learn to focus less on our differences and more on our similarities.

Asking questions is a great way to facilitate the dialogue that can uncover our similarities, but it only works if we are willing to stop making assumptions and go into “investigative reporter” mode. Next time you find yourself feeling irritated, getting defensive, or even sensing a threat from someone who is other, see if you can diffuse the anxiety by finding common ground. We can only gain by remembering that funamentally, we’re way more similar than we are different.

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Please mark your calendar for tomorrow, November 16, when Therese Skelly and I will be hosting In All Honesty – a teleconference with two experts speaking on the topics of question-asking and journaling as powerful tools for self-development. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.

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#471 Do you ever eat at buffets? How often? With whom?

#471 Do you ever eat at buffets? How often? With whom?

2006 figures put the number of cafeterias, buffets, and grill buffets in America at slightly more than 5,000.

The top 7 restaurants that come up in a Google search for “Phoenix, Arizona buffets” (my hometown) are:

  1. HomeTown Buffet

  2. Pancho’s Mexican Buffet

  3. Oriental Buffet

  4. Golden Coin Chinese Buffet

  5. Crown China Super Buffet

  6. South China Buffet

  7. Eastern Buffet

The most distasteful part of my search was the use of the term “all you can eat restaurants.” Maybe it’s my liberal social bent, but knowing that 925 million people are hungry, and every day almost 16,000 children die from hunger-related issues makes it hard to think we’re such a gluttonous people that we need to market buffets as “all you can eat,” rather than “serve yourself exactly what you want.”

Though their restaurant data is not the most up-to-date, PhoenixAbout.com captures the gist of buffets everywhere:

There are several places in the greater Phoenix area where you can get your fill for a very reasonable price. These all-you-can-eat buffets are great for people who like to eat a lot, like lots of variety, don’t like to dress up, and they will be popular with the kids, too. All of these buffet restaurants in the Phoenix area serve both lunch and dinner. Chinese buffets are not included here.

Though Las Vegas made them famous, buffets now trend from comfort food like that found at Hometown Buffet to the healthier like Souper Salad and Sweet Tomatoes to catch-all Asian fare like that found at many Chinese buffets. Perhaps the best way to describe them is literally, “something for everyone.”

If those hunger statistics prompted you to want to DO something about the problem, here are four great organizaations working toward eliminating poverty.

 

 

   
       

And if you want to know MY answer to this question, you’ll have to visit the 1001RLQFW membership site and click on the Forum. There, you can add your responses and compare notes with others! Speaking of working toward ending poverty, stay tuned for a future post about my worst blind date ever. This issue played a starring role!

In the meantime, please mark your calendar for next Tuesday, November 16, when Therese Skelly and I will be hosting In All Honesty – a teleconference with two experts speaking on the topics of question-asking and journaling as powerful tools for self-development. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.

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A Sense of Belonging Is Crucial for a Healthy, Happy Life

When life begins to pile on us, it’s easy to believe we’re the only one going through the trials and problems we are experiencing. It’s easy to feel all alone, like no one else on earth could possibly relate to our situation or circumstances. Chances are, though, that we’re not really alone. Someone, somewhere, is experiencing – or has experienced – the same situation. Does that make your problem easier? Not necessarily – but it may ease the stress to know that you’re not alone in the challenge, no matter how bad, weird, extreme, or disastrous it may seem.

Although loneliness and depression are not the same thing, they are intricately related. With current figures indicating that more than 15 million Americans suffer from chronic depression, there’s no denying it’s a serious problem. I’ve heard it said that nearly 40 percent of us feel we don’t have even one close friend – and without even one person in our corner when times get tough, it’s easy to turn to desperate measures.

One of the biggest contributors to a chronic sesne of loneliness seems to be the feeling of not belonging. In his famous “hierarchy of needs,” Abraham Maslow defined the sense of belonging as the third most important need of every human being. An eHow article describes the senese of belonging as “the feeling of being connected and accepted within one’s family and community. It is important in healthy human development and combating behavior problems and depression.”

When we’re in a funk – or depression – the last thing we may want to do is go out and be social, and yet that’s the very thing that can pull us out of the blues. There are lots of places to find groups and other inviduals who share our challenges. Meetup.com has groups for almost any interest under the sun. With some careful scrutiny, craigslist can be a very useful tool for finding people with similar interests. And if all else fails, you can start your own group: put an ad in your local newspaper, church bulletin, or on facebook.

The book 1,001 Real-Life Questions for Women naturally lends itself to discussion groups, which can help facilitate conversations that lead to a stronger sense of belonging. That said, I clearly am not a doctor, nor am I engaged in offering medical, health, psychological, or any other kind of personal professional services or advice. If you require personal medical, health, psychological, or other assistance or advice, you should definitely contact a professional.

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Please mark your calendar for next Tuesday, November 16, when Therese Skelly and I will be hosting In All Honesty – a teleconference with two experts speaking on the topics of question-asking and journaling as powerful tools for self-development. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.

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#250 Would you be more embarrassed or delighted to give a coworker a lift home in your car?

#250 Would you be more embarrassed or delighted to give a coworker a lift home in your car?

According to Department of Transportation and U.S. Census Bureau figures, more than 250 million passenger vehicles are registered in the U.S., and nearly 90 percent of American workers drive to work, the vast majority riding alone in their cars.

Nevertheless, accidents happen, cars break down, and money is occasionally too tight to fill the gas tank – meaning that we sometimes find ourselves needing to bum a ride from a friend or coworker.

Believe it or not, eHow even has an article titled, “How to Get a Car Ride to Work.”

This first one is too obvious. I almost didn’t include it, but thought what the heck… See if there is a coworker in your area that will give you a lift. Be sure though this is someone that you like being around. You may get stuck returning the favor more often that you think 😉

Good advice, I suppose! If you want to know MY answer to this question, you’ll have to visit the 1001RLQFW membership site and click on the Forum. There, you can add your responses and compare notes with others!

In the meantime, please mark your calendar for next Tuesday, November 16, when Therese Skelly and I will be hosting In All Honesty – a teleconference with two experts speaking on the topics of question-asking and journaling as powerful tools for self-development. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.
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Rediscovering Personal Identity

Identity exists on many levels: who we are; who we think we are; who others think we are; who we think others think we are. According to the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, “We often speak of one’s ‘personal identity’ as what makes one the person one is.” 

Our identity is formed, in large part, during our early years, a product of the influence of our first families, schools, religious organizations, social and civic communities. Then we grow up, pursue an education, get married, find a career, live in the community of our choosing, determine a political persuasion, perhaps change religious affiliations. All of these things go into determining who we are.

But what happens when our life circumstances change? Or our start in life was nontraditional in some way? Some people struggle with discovering or rediscovering their identities.

Adopted persons, for example. They become members of new families, after being removed from their families of origin through no fault of their own. Some find their way and assimilate easily into their adoptive families; others feel always at least a little on the outside. According to Nancy Verrier, author of The Primal Wound, one characteristic shared by many adopted persons is an inability or difficulty in making decisions, because they’re constantly seeking the approval of others in an effort to fit in. Their identity is confused, at best. While this situation is improving with the advent and acceptance of open adoption as standard practice, many adopted persons still struggle with questions of identity.

Widows and divorcees are another group of people who may struggle with rediscovering their identities. Having spent many years as one-half of a couple, to suddenly – or even not-so-suddenly – find oneself single again can be incredibly challenging. From finances to meals to simple companionship, learning to shift from living with a partner to living on one’s own likey requires some significant adjustments.

Folks who spent much of their adult lives in a single career or industry and now, in the new economy, find themselves either out of work, in a radically different industry, or working beneath their skill level may be struggling with a new identity.

Often we identify ourselves with our homes, neighborhoods, and communities. So what happens when financial calamity forces us to move suddenly or downsize against our will?

People in recovery are among those learning to find new identities. New friends, new hangouts, new habits and hobbies are all part of the brand new life that comes with leaving addiction behind. The past identity as a user or addict is transformed into something new, but understandably, the shift can be challenging.

Similarly, people newly released after incarceration may find themselves searching for a path to a new identity.

Mentally ill people often find themselves living with labels imposed on them by doctors, families, social workers, and society at large. But what if they want to shift those labels and discover a new self-identity?

Each of these groups – and anyone who wants to change their label or identity – could benefit from a self-inventory tool to assist them in discerning their tastes, values, desires, goals, and preferences. It might be as simple as a willingness to ask some probing questions and answer them honestly, and then the desire to act on the discoveries.

For a further commentary on personal identity, you may want to read this article by the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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Please mark your calendar for next Tuesday, November 16, when Therese Skelly and I will be hosting In All Honesty – a teleconference with two experts speaking on the topics of question-asking and journaling as powerful tools for self-development. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.

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#142 How organized/disorganized is your underwear drawer?

#142 How organized/disorganized is your underwear drawer?

A quick Google search with the term “organized underwear drawer” revealed more

Notice the holly and the hearts?

relevant responses than I would have imagined. My favorite was the third, a post from the 1-2-3…Get Organized blog:

Time to tackle the old underwear drawer! Start by tossing anything you don’t like, that is holey, doesn’t fit, or excessive. What’s left? Do you have enough underwear to make it through a week’s laundry? As you are taking stock, are there items you need?” Apparently January is “Get Organized” month. So now you know – and you can put it on your 2011 calendars today!

Another comment came from PainterMommy.com:

I have always had major trouble keeping my underwear drawer organized.  I have an old dresser with large drawers, so everything always wound up in a big pile that I would have to pick through to find anything.  Socks, bras, underwear, pantyhose…  it was all together in one drawer.  I was CONSTANTLY losing the ‘other sock’ in a pair.  My bras were getting tangled together and stretched out from trying to pull them apart.  And I wound up wearing the same pair of underwear over and over again, because I just picked what was on top. So I finally came up with a plan that works really great for me.  Watch this video and find out how I keep my underwear drawer organized.

Guess you’ll have to visit the site to watch the video if you want to know Dawn’s secret…

If you want more input and advice, you can do your own Google search! If you want to know MY answer to this question, you’ll have to visit the 1001RLQFW membership site and click on the Forum. There, you can add your responses and compare notes with others!

In the meantime, please mark your calendar for next Tuesday, November 16, when Therese Skelly and I will be hosting In All Honesty – a teleconference with two experts speaking on the topics of question-asking and journaling as powerful tools for self-development. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.

Note: This is a question from my book, 1,001 Real-Life Questions for Women: A Self-Exploration Workbook to Make You Laugh, Cry, Ponder, Ruminate, & Consider.

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Understanding the Question Is Half the Battle

Understanding the Question Is Half the Battle

Just saw this tweet:

It reminded me of several pieces of advice my dad gave me repeatedly during my primary and secondary education. First, he used to admonish continually, “If you don’t know, ASK!”

As I explained in the very first post on this blog, “He taught me to never be ashamed to ask a question for clarification or if I was confused about a point a teacher made. He reminded me that sometimes others had the same questions, and even encouraged me to ask questions when I did know the answer if I suspected there were others who didn’t quite understand the topic being explained at the moment.” This sometimes resulted in teachers looking straight at me, speaking really slowly and loudly – as if I was an idiot – because they had no idea I was asking on behalf of the rest of the class. Oh, the indignities I endured for the greater good!

But beyond simply asking, my dad also encouraged my sister and me always to make sure we understood the questions our teachers were asking of us – especially on exams. His last piece of advice on this subject was that we read the entire test before even beginning to answer a single question. That way, we’d know what was coming, which would allow us to plan and use the alloted time for the test to our advantage. He loved to regale us with the story of the time one of his teachers gave the class an exam on which the last question was, “Simply write your name on the top of the page and hand this in. It’s been a test to see how well you follow directions.”

The above tweet reminded me of this, specifically.

No doubt, my dad’s advice about asking and answering questions has a lot to do with the fact that I’ve become a chronic question-asker … and now author of 1,oo1 Real-Life Questions for Women. But beyond being a chronic question-asker, I’m also an advocate for asking – and answering – questions! Developing good question skills will teach you many things, improve your conversations, and make life much more interesting.

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Please mark your calendar for next Tuesday, November 16, when Therese Skelly and I will be hosting In All Honesty – a teleconference with two experts speaking on the topics of question-asking and journaling as powerful tools for self-development. Don’t worry if you can’t make the scheduled call time – we will make a recording available to all who register.

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