Answering Questions ?

Reflecting before answering.
Photo by Public Domain Pictures on Pexels.com

Asking questions, especially reflective ones, may be something we embrace. This might include questions we ask ourselves. Do we also embrace being asked questions? What is the response or reaction when we are the questioned one? Do we keep an open mind when asked a question? Do we respond reflexively or do we allow for reflection before responding? Obviously, that question itself is greatly influenced by the type of question being asked. Being asked if you want a second helping of your favorite food might suggest a quick and emphatic yes. Being asked if you liked a new dish, that you could not even identify might suggest some thought and perhaps some in-depth preparation of a response. This begs another question, is your response dependent on the questioner? In the previous question on the mystery dish, would you prepare a different answer for a restaurant taste test than for your spouse, who prides herself on her cooking? In fact, are there not many contextual variables that affect how we respond to questions?

Question hanging on a mobile

on a mobilePhoto by Daria Sannikova on Pexels.com

Is there even a mindset involved in our answering. Do we focus on the questioner, the question, the situation, the people in the scene or all of the above. Probably all of the above and many more factors? Similarly to when we ask questions, a lot of concerns are considered. Does this increase the importance of having a mindset about questions that helps us to avoid reflexive, reactionary and flippant responses. Are you a proponent of the STAR method for answering questions? It provides a blueprint for responses to contemplative questions like one might face during formal or informal “interviews”. STAR represents: Situation, Task, Action and Result. Would such a template and an open, positive mindset promote more in-depth and authentic answers. In essence can we program ourselves, without knowing the questions, to respond to questions in a consistent manner? Would that be worthwhile to aid in avoiding hasty, regrettable answers?

An interesting thought might be raised about the need to ask questions. When I am asked a question, why do I want to answer? Are there times to just ignore the question or to “deal with the question” without answering it?

“At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and what you want”
–Lao Tzu

Is answering questions a complicated process? Should we, like with many life situations, have a predetermined plan? This might require some thought?

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