The Ericksons

Q is for: Question Everything


Question Everything

Many years ago I ended up being the president of the homeschool support group at our church. I say, “ended up,” because after attending only 1 meeting, I agreed to become the vice president and then the president resigned 2 weeks later. So my unexpected rise to power left me feeling pretty overwhelmed. I had to question everything in order to come up with a plan to improve the way we dd things.

There were some problems

As we began to question everything, we started with the attendance. It was really low. There were only about 5 of us. Yet, we had a lot of homeschooling families in our church.  Why weren’t they part of the group? What was it they needed that we could offer? What was it that was keeping them away? I thought about what kept me away. The meetings were in the evening when I felt I should be home for my family. I wasn’t the only one. Homeschooling moms often feel guilty about leaving the kids with Dad the minute he walks in the door from work.

During the winter months, it gets dark early in Minnesota. There are times when it’s dark by 4:30 pm. On top of that, it’s cold! This makes heading out to a homeschool support meeting even more unappealing. So, nights were a problem.

We had to question everything about our proposed solutions.

But during the day, women can’t come because they have kids to teach and care for. What if we had something for the kids? Someone could do a project with them while the rest of us were in the homeschool support meeting. When we put the invitation out for people to come during the day and bring their children, we had almost 100 patents and children show up. We had to arrange for a larger meeting room. That same year, we organized a homeschool co-op. We came up with a lot of great ideas and our support group became quite successful.

The A to Z Blogging Challenge

A to Z Blogging challengeI’m doing double duty this month during the A to Z Blogging Challenge. Here at Heather Erickson Author/Writer/Speaker, I will share ideas for “Thinking Creatively.” I’ll also be doing the challenge at Facing Cancer with Grace, where I will focus on “Avoiding Burnout.” I hope you’ll visit me at both sites. While you’re here, sign up for my email list. Today’s post is Q is for Question Everything.

Asking questions is one of the best ways to probe under a problem and find the pain points. Take the idea behind Netflix for example. The driving question that co-founder Reed Hastings asked after he was fined $40 for an overdue DVD was, “What if a video rental company didn’t charge late fees?” Think about a problem you want to solve.

Brainstorm as many ideas as possible by using these two magic questions:

  • What if…?
  • How might we…?

What could you do differently, just by questioning the way things have always been done?

What are YOUR thoughts?

I’d love to hear in the comment section, below. I appreciate my readers as well as the writing community. To show that appreciation, I use Comment Luv. Just leave a comment below and your latest post will get a link next to it. Thank you!

About Heather EricksonThe Ericksons

I am an author, writer, and speaker and homeschooling mom of 3. Since doctors diagnosed my husband, Dan with stage IV lung cancer in 2012, I’ve focused my writing and speaking on helping cancer patients and their families advocate for themselves and live life to the fullest, in spite of their illness. My goal is to help people face cancer with grace. My books are available at Amazon.com:

The Memory Maker’s Journal 

Facing Cancer as a Friend: How to Support Someone Who Has Cancer

Facing Cancer as a Parent: Helping Your Children Cope with Your Cancer

I also blog about living with cancer at Facing Cancer with Grace.

What are your thought? I'd love to hear them!

8 comments on “Q is for: Question Everything

Asking questions like what if have ended in my first book, Being Human. Questions are a great way to get the ideas flowing.

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Hi Patricia. Yes, questioning things is perfect for getting ideas, and causing ideas to blossom into more ideas. It can also help you see potential problems before they become real, big problems.

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Oh yes, questioning everything can be good. I wish students would question more.

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Hi Liz. I agree. One of the things I love about teaching is seeing the curiosity in someone. My youngest has a very narrow field of curiosity. I’m always trying to find what she’s passionate about. Not easy…

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Yes to questions – they can open up so much. One of my favorite is always “How does it get better than this?” I like it because if something isn’t going well, it opens the way to thinking new solutions. But if things are good, it acknowledges that they are in fact going well, but encourages dreaming/thinking even bigger to perhaps make things great.

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Hi Deborah. I love your question. It’s a question that has, and will, change the world.

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Thanks for the reminder to ask questions, Liz. Our writers group is suffering from low attendance and we are struggling to remedy the situation. Time to brainstorm with some tough questions.

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Hi Gail. I love that you qualified them as “tough” questions. Those are the questions whose answers make an impact. I hope you can come up with some innovative solutions to your attendance issue.

Reply

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