Lifestyle and Trends Self Development By Katherine Shaw / April 7, 2016 When was the last time you asked yourself some significant questions? I mean the really BIG questions… Have you had the chance recently to examine the kind of life you are living right now? Most of us are ‘going through the motions,’ and a majority feel stuck in ‘everyday problems’. Others are so at ease in their comfort zones, afraid to question anything, and thus stick to performing their daily routines. But if we pause for a while and reflect on important matters, we may be able to venture out of our comfort zones and live a more fulfilling life. Hopefully, reading this will inspire you to do just that. The Greek philosopher Socrates once said, “An unexamined life is not worth living.” This famous quote from this wise man has inspired us to get together a series of articles with thought provoking questions that anyone can ask themselves and reflect on Part 1 Simple Questions To Ask Your (Potential) Boyfriend To Find Out If He’s Serious About You Introspection can help anyone assess and look at their own lives from a different point of view, examine it more thoroughly, and find out what’s really important and meaningful for them. We prepared 365 questions that will be featured in several batches; read and ponder on at least one question each day and observe where it takes you: Are you satisfied and content with your life right now? Have you achieved your life’s goals? If not yet, what are the things that you’re currently doing to achieve those goals? What are your greatest strengths? Do you have regrets in your life? What are they? Are you affected by others’ opinions about you? Do they influence how you lead your life? What makes your life worth living? Are you really, truly happy? What is your greatest inspiration? What are you passionate about? Are you doing anything to pursue it? What are the simple things that make you smile everyday? Are you willing to try a new adventure? What would it be? What was your childhood dream?Have you achieved it? If you can change anything in your life right now, what would it be? Are you contributing to someone else’s happiness? What is your happiest memory? Can you recreate that event? What makes you sad? Can you do something to relieve it? What motivates you to live a meaningful life? How can you make your community a better place? What are you most afraid of? What are the things that you can do to conquer this fear? What is your favorite place in the world? What is the greatest lesson that you have learned about life so far? Are you carrying any emotional baggage? How can you get rid of it? What are your thoughts about revenge? Is it really necessary? What would you like other people to remember about you? When you look in a mirror, what do you see? What do you like to tell yourself whenever you’re down or disappointed? What is your definition of success? Have you achieved that status? What excites you on a daily basis? Is spirituality important to you? What religious beliefs do you have? Do you believe in heaven, hell, and life after death?Why or why not? Do you have friends that you can really trust?On the other hand, are you loyal and trustworthy as a friend? Where is your “happy place?” Can you stay there most of the time? Who do you think of when you need an inspiration for success?What are his/her qualities that you would like to emulate? Do you consider yourself a strong person? Why or why not? What specific achievement are you most proud of? That’s the first round, and hopefully some of these questions have encouraged you to ‘go within’ and perhaps incited some much-needed introspection. As Aristotle, another famous Greek, said: “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.” Part 2 Questions to Ask a Potential Boyfriend before Sex This is Part 2 of the series on ‘365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself’. Try to mull over at least one question each day and see if you can go deeper with each question. What are the three most important aspects of your life right now? What material things can you live without? What natural phenomenon fascinates you the most? What is your happiest childhood memory? Is having a lot of money really important for you? Or is just having a comfortable life enough? How can you contribute to preserving the environment? If you only had one month to live, what would you do with your remaining time on earth? If you had to say your last goodbye to someone, who would that person be and why? What is the best gift or present that you would like to receive on your birthday? Is it really necessary to celebrate any occasion with a lavish party? How would you like to celebrate an important event in your life? If you were given the chance to live in a human colony in Mars as part of an experiment, wouldyou go for it? Why or why not? If you could choose any country where you could live happily, where would it be and why? What is the song that best expresses your emotions at present? If you could choose to have one talent or skill, what would it be? If a genie granted you three wishes, what would those be? What are you most grateful for in your life? What is the most valuable lesson that your parents taught you? If you could make a difference in someone’s life, whom would you choose to help and what are the things that you could do to make his/her life better? How can you make yourself more productive everyday? What is the ideal job for you? How can you get your dream job? How can you achieve a work-life balance? What are the things that you can do to be successful at work but at the same time, spend quality time with your family? How can you be mentally strong? What is the most stressful thing or event that you can’t tolerate? How can you overcome it? How can you have a positive outlook in life most of the time? Do you want to lead a simple life or a complicated one with a lavish lifestyle? Why? Have you found your soul mate? If not yet, do you believe that he/she will still come to your life? What is the most romantic thing that your partner did for you? What is the most unselfish thing that you have done for someone you love? Is it better to love and fail in the relationship than to never love at all? If you wanted to pamper yourself today, what activity would you do? If you would treat a friend or a family member to a leisurely day, where would you go and what would you do? What is the best material gift that you can reward yourself with? If you had the opportunity to be an entrepreneur, what would be your smart business idea? If you had a choice between a large house in a big estate or a “micro-living” house, which one would you pick? Why? What skill would you like to learn more about? How important is honesty for you? What person’s character impresses you the most? Who is the person that you admire the most and why? Do you ever feel that there is a void in your life? What do you think can fill it? What book would you like to read again and again? Why? If you have already forgiven someone, do you think that you should also forget what he/she did wrong to you? Why? Where will you be five years from now? What is your biggest regret in life? If you could travel in time, where would you go?Would you go back to the past or would you like to see the future? We hope you liked the second round of questions that we prepared for you. There are still a lot to go before we finish the full set for one year, so watch out for the next batch of questions we’ve put together. We leave you with a wonderful and very apt quote from Carl Jung: “Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” Part 3 5 Annoying Questions that Single Women Get Tired of Hearing This is Part 3 of the series on ‘365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself’. Read and reflect on at least one question each day and see where it takes you: Are you taking good care of yourself physically, emotionally, and mentally? What steps can you take to better nurture yourself in these aspects? Do you really know yourself, for who you really are? Is there someone who you think owes you an apology? Are you ready to forgive him/her? What makes you unique as an individual? Which famous person’s biography inspires you the most? If you could talk to a famous person, who would that be and what would you tell him/her? How do you handle stressful events? What popular myth did you think was true? What is your favorite childhood / bedtime / fairy tale story? What is your favorite movie of all time and why? What is your most treasured photograph, and what makes it so special? What legacy would you like to leave behind? Does love make you a weak person or a strong one? What three words best describe yourself? What is your expertise that you would like to share with the world? Are you willing to risk your life to save a stranger? Do you believe that money can’t buy happiness and why? What is the kindest thing that a stranger has done for you? What is the greatest challenge that you have faced in your life? How did you overcome it? What is the most precious thing that you have right now? What is the best life lesson that you have learned the hard way? Do you think that you can be a role model to the youth? How can you accomplish this? What will it take to make you get out of your comfort zone? Would you consider life to be fair? Do you easily give up or do you consider yourself resilient? Are you at peace with yourself and with everyone around you? Are you excited about the future or afraid of it? If you could go back in time, what would you change and why? Have you realized your life’s purpose?If yes, what is it? What keeps you motivated at work? Have you reached your full potential, or is there still room for improvement? Are you afraid of failing? How can you conquer this fear? Have you ever watched the sun rise or set? How did it make you feel? Do you appreciate small things, like the beauty of the flowers or the sound of the rain? What gadget can you not live without? If you could pack your most valuable possessions in one bag, what would the contents be? If you won a free vacation, which would you pick – a beach holiday or a trip to Paris? If you won the lottery, what would you do with your prize money? If there is one part of your body that you could improve, what would it be and why? Are you a good listener? Or do you talk more than you listen? Do you consider yourself assertive or easily swayed? How would you describe the perfect holiday? What drives you crazy? What is the craziest thing you have ever done? How do you feel about it? What changes would you like to do in your life? That ends the third round of questions that we prepared for you.See you on the next batch of thought provoking questions! Part 4 This is Part 4 of our series on ‘365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself’. See if you can answer and reflect on one question each day to continue with this one-year series. If you could be a superhero for a day, who would you like to be and why? What do you look forward to in the future? If it was possible to trade your life with another person whom you admire or idolize, who would you do it with and why? What do you consider your biggest weakness? How can you overcome this? What have you learned today? Who can make you laugh so hard that you end up crying? What is the happiest moment of your life so far? What is the best advice that you have received? What will make you quit your job? Do you believe in supernatural beings? Why or why not? Are you willing to let go of someone you love if he/she doesn’t want to stay in the relationship anymore? Do you really know how to love someone unconditionally? What is a childhood memory that stands out the most for you? What do you think is your most desirable trait? Do you consider yourself to be an inherently good person? Do you believe that if you change your appearance, some partsof your personality also change? If money is not an issue, what would you be doing right now? What personal experience taught you the best lesson about life? Can you live with someone you have no affection for? Are you being honest with yourself all the time, or do you tend to be in denial when something bad happens? What are the ways by which you can lessen distractions and achieve laser-like focus in any aspect of your life? Which do you believe in – luck (being at the right place, right time) or pure hard work? What are the five things that you will never do, no matter what? What is your definition of freedom? Are you experiencing it right now? If you were diagnosed with a terminal illness, would you tell your loved ones about it? How would you spend your remaining days? If you could bring someone back from the dead for one hour, who would that person be and what would you tell him/her? What is the most embarrassing thing that you have done because someone dared you to do it? If you were given the chance to be reborn, would you choose the same gender you are now? Why or why not? How would you define a great relationship? Do you have it right now? Are you truly living your life to the fullest or are you merely existing? What is your favorite thing to do during your free time? What season do you like best and why? What part of your body are you most proud of and why? What bores you to death the most? What are the three natural phenomena that you find most fascinating? What was the worst punishment that you had during your childhood? What country would you like to visit the most? Would you live there if given the chance? Can you imagine your life without the‘modern comforts’ of technology? If you could give a big hug to someone right now, who would it be and why? If you failed and you had to start again from scratch, whom would you run to for help? If your life could be made into a movie, would it be interesting to watch and would you watch it? If you reach the ripe old age of 80, could you say to yourself that you lived a full life and you did the best that you could? What is the perfect adventure for you? Name three of your biggest fears, and if they came true, how would you handle them? What do you consider the best day of your life? That ends the fourth round of questions that we prepared for you. Please continue to the fifth round in the next section. For now, we leave you with a quote from Rainer Maria Rilke: “Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart…live in the question.” Part 5 This is Part 5 of our series on ‘365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself’. Make an effort to answer and reflect on one question everyday to continue with this one-year series: Do you have any bad habits that you want to get rid of? How can you overcome them? Do you easily give in to pressure? Do you easily lose your temper? How do you handle stress and frustration? Do you consider yourself impulsive or do you always have a plan for everything? What makes a relationship endure and last forever for you? Do you think suffering is necessary for you to appreciate life? What do you miss the most from your childhood? If you could go back to the past, at what stage of your life would you go back to and why? What electronic device can’t you live without? If you went back to school, which course would you choose and why? What are the top three devices that make life easy and comfortable for you? Do you think it’s important to connect with nature? Is there any opportunity that you think you have wasted? Do you regret it? What changes do you seek in your life? How can you carry them out? If you were asked to speak in public, what is the most urgent message that you want to deliver? Do you easily admit to your mistakes or do you always make up excuses for your behavior? What is the worst mistake in your life that you will never ever do again? Would you like to lead a boring but stable life than face life’s challenges, or would you rather prefer an exciting life but with a lot of risks? Are you afraid of committing mistakes, or do you welcome them so you can be a stronger person? What childhood trait do you wish that you still had and why? If you could be forever young or immortal, would you take this chance? Why or why not? If you could influence others to follow your lead, what important thing would you like them to do? Whom do you consider most special in your life and why? Do you believe in karma? Why or why not? What are the three books that have profoundly affected your life? Have you ever wanted to be in another person’s shoes? Why? What behaviour irritates you the most? Which hobby or activity makes you lose track of time? Is it worth your while? Have you done anything crazy in your life? If not yet, are you willing to do it just for fun? How do you celebrate the important events in your life? Do you go for grand parties or do you prefer intimate gatherings? Do you have any exciting plans for the coming year? What are they? When looking for a partner, is physical appearance important to you? Why or why not? What are you most scared of losing in your life? If your life was a book, what would be its title? If you were given the opportunity to start a new life and erase your past, would you take it? Why or why not? What are the top five priorities in your life? What is the greatest mystery in the world that you want to solve? What is the biggest lie that you have ever told? What effect did it have in your life? What is your most cherished memory? Where do you see yourself 5 years from now? What is your best talent that you can share with the world? Which do you use most of the time when you need to make a decision – your heart or your brain? How important is equality in a relationship for you? Have you ever been blamed for someone else’s mistake? How did you handle it? Do you bottle up your feelings, or do you openly express your emotions? That ends the fifth round of questions that we prepared for you. Please continue to the sixth round in the next section. See you there! Part 6 This is Part 6 of our series on ‘365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself’. Try to answer and reflect on one question everyday to continue with this one-year series: When you wake up in the morning, what are you most thankful for? Have you ever had a broken heart? How did you move on from it? What are you willing to sacrifice for your career? Do you think it will be worth it? What one word best describes your personality? Do you think that you should maintain your individual self and independence when you are in a relationship? What are the things that you think of before going to bed at night? Can you imagine your life without the people that you care about? Is there anything that troubles you at this moment? What can you do to resolve it? If there is one thing that you can change about your partner, what would it be? If a fairy granted you a wish and you could do everything that you desire in one day, what are the things or activities that you would do? What are the top 3 most valuable lessons you learned from your parents? Do you make promises lightly? Or do you do everything to fulfill them? What is one gift that you have received that you treasure the most? How do you express yourself creatively? Would you do anything and risk everything just so you can prove your point? Do you satisfy your curiosity? Or have you stopped being curious a while ago? What makes you greet the day with a smile? Do you choose your battles wisely or do you get into fights all the time, without analyzing the situation first? What is the most embarrassing thing that you have done in public? Did it have any impact on your life? Would you rather be a genius who has a complicated life, or an average thinker who takes pleasure in simple things? In your opinion, is exacting revenge ever justified? Why or why not? Where do you imagine yourself three years from now?Have you already achieved some of your goals by then? Are you the one controlling your life or do life events control you? What principles in life do you value the most? Do you strive to live by them? Are you trapped in your comfort zone or would you like to venture out and explore the world? What prevents you from achieving your ultimate goal? What sacrifices are you willing to make in order to realize your dreams? Do you accept yourself for who you really are, and are you content with what you have become? Have you reached the point where you feel that all is well in your world and you are at peace with yourself no matter what happens? What movie made the biggest impact on you? If your partner asked you to make a sacrifice for him/her, would you grant that request? Why or why not? If you could recreate one precious moment in your life, what would it be and why would you choose it? Can you consider yourself a good friend? Can you help a friend in need? Was there ever a time when you sensed that giving up was the best option? How did it turn out? Would you believe in something even if you could not physically see and feel it? How do you calm yourself down in nerve-wracking situations? When was the last time you rewarded yourself with something special? Do you love or hate surprises? Have you treated your parents to a vacation that they will never forget? Have you ever hurt another person? Did you apologize to him/her? Are you willing to wait for the perfect partner, even if it would take a long time? What do you think is the best decision that you have ever made that turned your life around for the better? What are your accomplishments that you are most proud of? How do you handle uncertainties in life? If you could have either good looks or intelligence, which one would you choose? That ends the sixth round of questions that we prepared for you. Please continue to the seventh round in the next section. Part 7 This is Part 7 of our series on ‘365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself. Reflect on at least one question each day and see where it takes you: What is life? Can dreams foretell the future? If you were asked to become a participant in a vaccine trial for a deadly disease, would you do it? Why or why not? Do you know when to be determined (or strong-willed) and when to give up? Is there something that you have given up on that you tried everything to change the outcome but your efforts proved to be futile? What recent event had a significant impact on your life? What important life lesson would you share with your younger self? Is there someone to whom you are greatly indebted, a mentor who helped you become a better person? Have you thanked him/her? If a time machine was invented, would you choose to go back in time and change a historical event? What would that be and why? What good habits would you like to acquire? What are the steps you should take to have them? Do you consider yourself a positive person? How can you have a positive attitude most of the time? Do you devote some time and effort for your personal growth and development? What major aspect would you like to change about your attitude or behavior? If you could travel and work part-time (with very little financial gain) simultaneously, would you go for it? Or are you content with your boring but stable (highly-paid) corporate job? What bad attitude or behavior infuriates you the most? What responsibilities do you have now that you wish you could just delegate to someone else? What makes you attractive or desirable to another person? Do you feel that there is something missing in your life? What could it be? What holds you back from doing something that you really want to do? Can you act on it now? If you could give pleasure to someone today, who would that person be and why? What first impression would you like to give when meeting other people for the first time? Do you believe that you can forgive someone even if he/she has not asked for your forgiveness? Have you ever felt alone and sad? How did you cope with the situation? If you were betrayed by a friend, do you think that you could regain your friendship in the future if he/she asked for your forgiveness? What do you consider the biggest stumbling block in achieving your goal? What can you do about it? What activities do you do just for fun? What song best reflects your emotions right now? Is there still something new to discover about you? How would you describe in one sentence your relationship with your partner at present? What are your top three favorite sounds from nature? Do you still have faith in the human race’s capacity for kindness and love? What scent pleases you the most? What funny memory makes you laugh so hard? What childhood phobia do you still have that you can’t overcome no matter how hard you have tried? How often do you say “I love you” to your loved ones? What is the best compliment that you have received so far? In your opinion, what is the most fascinating place on Earth? What is the most important question for you that needs to be answered? What is the most expensive item that you can afford? Would you buy it as a reward for yourself? Why or why not? Do you believe that the best things in life are free? Why or why not? What is your favorite holiday? Why? When you were a kid, was there an object that you wanted so much but your parents couldn’t afford it? Could you give it to yourself now to satisfy your childhood wish? What inspirational quote was most life-changing for you? What was your most horrifying experience? Have you gotten over that incident? What event in the past do you wish that you could go back to? Why? What situation do you wish to change in your life? Can you still do something about it now? Do you believe in reincarnation? Why or why not? Who is the person that you immediately turn to when you’re in trouble or when you just need someone by your side? What is the life-changing moment that made your life better? How do you deal with difficult people? That ends the seventh round of questions that we prepared for you. We leave you with a quote from Rollo May, author or Man’s Search for Himself, according to May: “Many people suffer from the fear of finding oneself alone, and so they don’t find themselves at all.” 365 thought-provoking questions to ask yourself: Finale This is part 8, which concludes our series on ‘365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself’. See if you can answer and reflect on one question everyday to finish this one-year series. What do you think is the wisest decision you have ever made? What is the most mind-boggling problem that you have encountered? How were you able to solve it? Do you always seek the advice of others before making a decision? Are you sensitive to other people’s perceptions about you? If you can reset one day in your life, what would that be and why? If you had a choice between a highly-paid but stressful job and a lower-paid but simple job, which one would you choose and why? Do you spend enough quality time with your family and friends? How can you focus on the most important things in your life and avoid unnecessary diversions? Are you vocal about your opinion even if it goes against the popular belief? Do you feel like other people are taking advantage of your generosity and kindness? Is there any negative incident in your past that you still cling to? How can you move on from it? Who inspires you to be the best person that you can become? What challenge or trial in your life made you a much stronger person? Have you figured out what your passion in life is? Are you currently pursuing it? Do you believe that a relationship should have spontaneity to keep it interesting? What was the most impulsive thing that you bought? Did you regret it afterwards? What special moment in your life would you like to revisit? Why? What was the most vivid dream that you had, that it almost seemed real? What was the most powerful emotion that you have ever felt? What is the most persistent thought in your mind for the past three days? What do you intend to do about it? In times of crisis, who is the person that immediately comes to your mind as someone whom you can depend on? Do you have a deep, dark secret? Have you confided about it to someone you trust? Who is your favorite person to confide to? What significant life event shaped or molded you as the person that you are today? When was the last time that you got so mad that you couldn’t control your rage anymore? Do you get affected by the serious problems in the world like disease, hunger, and abuse? Are you doing anything to help out in whatever small way? What for you is your biggest win so far? Why do you realize the value of people or things when they are already gone from your life? How do you make the most out of your day? Are you able to use your time efficiently? What are things that you are indifferent to? How old or young do you feel? What age would you give yourself today and why? Do you appreciate the people around you who genuinely care for you? Or do you just take them for granted? Are you flexible enough to adapt to life’s constantly changing landscape? What major lifestyle change do you plan to accomplish in the next six months? What kind of responsibility or commitment would you avoid at all costs? If you suddenly decide to resign from your job, what will you miss the most in the workplace? What are your imperfections that you think are perfect? Do you believe that happiness is the best revenge? Why or why not? Are you busy living your life or making a living? What would you consider a priceless moment in your life? Are you scared to try new things that you haven’t tried before? What is your perspective about life – something to be endured or something to enjoy? Are you a born leader or do you just follow the crowd? Do you give your best in every endeavor that you undertake? Name something or someone that made you smile today. What is the question that you are afraid to ask yourself? Is there someone in your life that you need to let go of? What is your favorite thing to eat, and when was the last time you had it? At what exact point did you realize that you only have one life to live (or you only live once)? Do you let stress and anxiety affect your everyday life? How do you cope with them? Do you love the life that you have now? Have you ever said emotionally abusive things to your partner? Do you regret saying them? If you can change anything about the world today, what would it be? What are the 3 most magical moments in your life? What do you think is your biggest contribution to the world so far? That ends our series. We hope you enjoyed reading and pondering on these questions as much as we have enjoyed putting them together.Were you able to discover new things about yourself? How deep were you able to go in your introspection? Hopefully, these questions have encouraged you to go ask yourself the big questions in life and take a little time each day to ponder on where you are, where you want to go, how to get there, and most importantly how to enjoy the ‘journey’.