Asking The Right Question Can Help Create a Clear Path to Your End Goal
A common question we ask is; “What’s next?” Are we sure that’s the best question to discover our next step? Can “what’s next” lead us to the wrong decision? Absolutely.
“What’s next” is effective but lacks clarity.
Let’s say we are unemployed, and we ask what’s next? The obvious answer is to find employment. Is that really the correct question? No.
A better question is; What’s first? The answer: Create a great resume. That’s what’s first.
The “what’s next” question causes us to miss important details. The “what’s next” question is too broad and cannot focus our thinking.
The question of “what’s first’ creates a sequence of thoughts. Without proper order, we overlook important details. The wrong question results in putting the horse in front of the cart. The result is two steps forward and one step backward.
Therefore, “what’s next” is the wrong question. At every stage of progress, the primary question is “What’s first?”
“What’s first” is paramount for maximizing sequential results.
Say a person with severe anger issues needs counseling. In the counseling session, we ask, “What’s next?” The obvious answer is to treat the anger. However, treating anger is the wrong answer.
The correct sequence is to first discover the cause of the anger. Notice we skip the most vital step by asking the wrong question. The better question is “What’s first” in treating our client?
Once we know the cause, we can treat the symptoms properly.
Let’s Get Practical:
Look at your weekly schedule. How do you prioritize your demands? This is big. And yes, there are a variety of good methods on how to prioritize your day.
Let’s say; You’re facing a big day and a demanding week. Your calendar is maxed. Monday arrives, and you hit the ground running. You run to the shower, throw on some clothes, and rush out the door.
Are these healthy steps to handle a hard day? No way.
This is a “what’s next” mentality.
Let’s consider “what’s first” in the same scenario. It’s Monday morning, and you wake up refreshed. Why?
Because the night before you considered, “What’s first?” “What’s first” for a busy next day? A great night’s sleep is the right answer.
Once again, in the first scenario, we overlooked the simplicity of “what’s first?”
Busy days turn out best when we use the “what’s first principle.”
It looks like this:
- Get up earlier than needed
- Prioritize quiet time
- Get centered on your day
- Fuel your body with a nutritious breakfast
- Give yourself adequate time for your commute
The above list is a sequential order that establishes “what’s first.”
The use of “what’s first” will establish a proper sequence of priorities.
After knowing “what’s first,” considering “what’s next” is an option.
Think it over. Do you see how “what’s first” must precede “what’s next?”
“What’s first” works in every situation.
Try it, it may be “what’s next” for greater results.