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Pause and Ask Why?

Updated: Nov 1, 2019

Does anyone else know a toddler who went through a “Why?” phase? My son went through a “why” phase. He would ask “why” multiple times a day....he was and still is a very inquisitive little soul.


I have been pondering the power of this question more recently as I work with more and more teams who are genuinely enthusiastic about understanding their colleagues as best they can and creating the best work environment possible.


What if, in our interactions with others we paused and asked why when we notice that someone is not their usual self or they speak to us with an unpleasant tone or treat us unfairly. Is our immediate reaction always “How dare they?” and to seek support from others for how we have been wronged!


I’d like to pose a challenge....

For one week each time you have an interaction with a person that could quite easily result in you becoming offended or disgruntled Pause and Ask Why with regards to the other persons behaviour.


This pause moment provides the opportunity for insight. Insight that has the possibility to changes the way you view the person and how you could extend kindness or support to them.


I am not for one second suggesting we should condone any behaviour that is just plain abusive or disrespectful but if its average everyday kind of stinky behaviour try the Pause and Ask Why challenge and see what happens.


Maybe they are hungry?

Maybe they ran over their cat on the way to work?

Maybe they just received some hard news?

Maybe they are feeling overwhelmed by the weight of the pressures they carry?


Maybe they are desperate for someone to ask:

Hey is everything ok?

Is there anything I can do to help you? I understand


Kindness is sometimes the narrow road but it is oh so needed in our world today.

It has power and can turns situations and circumstances around and reveal the truth about how our friends, families and colleagues are actually travelling.

This then opens the door to more authentic relationships and vulnerability and a greater understanding of one another which in turn leads to healthier communities be that at work, home, school or in our neighbourhoods.


This weeks questions.....

As you consider someone you are finding challenging “Pause and Ask Why”?

Does this give you any insight as to how you might be able to extend kindness or support to this person?


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