- The most important question you are always asking yourself is usually outside of your conscious awareness. This question you are always asking yourself is called the “Virtual Question”. This means all other questions or statements are filtered through the Virtual Question first. You more than likely have been using this Virtual Question before age eight.
Self limiting Virtual Questions with a “what” question always leads to making lists. “Why” questions are really not answerable. Questions that have ”yes”, “don’t know” or “no” answers set us up for win/lose and anxiety.
Some examples of self limiting Virtual Questions:
Am I enough?
What do I do next?
What do I do?
What do I have to do next?
What could happen?
What are people thinking of me?
Do I know what to do next?
Do I know what to do?
Do I know the right way?
Do they like me?
Am I safe?
Is it safe?
Can I even do this?
Will I get hurt?
Things I need to do?
Why can’t I do anything right
Will I fail?
How do I look?
Am I doing the right thing?
Will I make a mistake?
How do I find my Virtual Question? Maybe you see your Virtual Question in the above examples or you can imagine seeing yourself 10 feet away. Imagine you look like you are asking a question and step into yourself and hear the question you are asking yourself.
To give you a simple experience of how a Virtual Question determines the ways in which a person responds or behaves, notice the immediate change in your own experience when, reflecting upon one of your upcoming tasks, you ask yourself “How can I make the most of this?” versus asking yourself “Do I know the right way to do this?”. Very often, unless the task is something that you definitely know how to do because of prior experience, the second question will cause you to begin questioning your ability to perform.
A helpful Virtual Question will presuppose a positive outcome. A “how question” also gives you process and a choice. Ask each question below to yourself and notice the positive differences in your experience of using these “how questions”. Which one is your favorite?
How can I make this better?
How can I make the most of this?
How can I make the most of this day?
How can I do this?
How can I make the most of now?
If you want to change your Virtual Question that you have probably used since your childhood to one of the above, do the following:
Make a visual symbol of your “old“ Virtual Question. Make a different visual symbol of your “new” Virtual Question. Bring both up in visual field and then allow the “old” symbol to go further and further away until it is a dot. Count to 3 and the dot will explode into a billion pieces. Now imagine a beautiful picture frame and allow the “new” symbol to become words in your new picture frame of your new Virtual Question.
To reinforce the Virtual Question pretend you are born with this question and then come quickly through time with this question throughout all of your experiences to now and then go into the future when you are 90 years old and then come back to now with the full knowledge that this is your new Virtual Question.
Some people write their new Virtual Question on a card and keep it in their billfold. Some write the question on post-it -notes and put them on their refrigerators and computer monitors.
If after a few weeks you find yourself back to using your old Virtual Question, you might consider doing Imperative Self Analysis (ISA) in the post above.