I’m always amazed at how often people won’t ask a question they want answered. Instead they will speculate, assume, dread and hope for an answer. But they never just ask.
When we want to know something, why don’t we just ask?
I’ve sat in mental misery spinning over a question endlessly: Does he like me? Is my boss upset? What did she mean by that? Will I be invited? Do we have any unfinished business? etc. etc. And I’ve seen plenty of other people – people old enough to know better – do the same thing.
When it finally dawned on me to just start asking, the relief was immense. It sounds so simple and obvious doesn’t it? But do you do it? Do you just ask?
Just asking does require a bit of bravery, some clarity, and self-awareness. Here are a few tips to get you started on your path to just asking:
- Don’t expect answers or even civility in response to questions that are none of your business.
- Sometimes answers will come in time. It’s okay to be patient and simply observe. Sometimes you already know the answer inside.
- Don’t ask questions to which you’re not prepared to hear any answer. If your heart is set on only one answer or outcome, then that’s not a question you should ask.
- If you want something and you’re already at “no”, you have nothing to lose by asking. People cannot respond with yes to the unasked question. I’ve been given plants, food, drinks, jewelry, raises, better seating, upgrades, discounts and help just because I asked. So ask!
Can I ask you something? What keeps you from just asking?