Why?

by Mary Mazzoni on May 20, 2012

“The important thing is to keep questioning” – Albert Einstein

We may find ourselves in a place we never intended to be, unless we pause to ask ourselves questions along the way. Just ask this guy. (Yikes!)

This site is about a particular life transition. A big one. The passage from school to life after IEPs.

But life is full of transitions. Change is constant. The habit of questioning helps us navigate life as it unfolds.

Are we teaching our kids to ask themselves questions about what they want and how they plan to get there? Are we asking ourselves questions about our own goals and plans?

Some Big Questions

We are role models for our kids. Do we ask ourselves Big Questions every once in a while to clarify where we want to go?  There are all sorts of ways to do this. Sometimes I write in a journal, or create collages, scrapbook or art journal pages. Sometimes I talk with a close friend or counselor. Some people like to create vision boards.

However we engage the Big Questions – what might happen if we chose to share some of our personal insights from these questions with our child? How might that honest sharing affect our relationship? How might we empower our child to ask these questions for him or herself?

Here are a few Big Questions for starters:

  • Who am I?
  • What matters most to me?
  • Who do I love to be with?
  • When and where am I happiest?
  • How can I contribute to the world?
  • What is an ideal day for me now? In 1 year? 5 years?
  • What can I do now to make that dream happen?
  • What would I like to learn?
  • How have I changed in the last year?
  • How would I like to change in the coming year?
  • What can I do to make that change happen?
  • What am I grateful for?
  • Who am I grateful to?

Why?

A simple question to ask ourselves once in a while is – “why?”.

Kids ask “why?” a lot, don’t they?

“Why do I need to learn this?” ” Why do I need to do this?”

If our answer is “because I say so” – we’re not exactly encouraging them to ask the question, are we?

Turns out our response to our kids’ “why” questions matters. A lot.

In a major study called  “The Silent Epidemic: Perspectives of High School Dropouts”youth who dropped out of school said they saw school as irrelevant. They didn’t understand “why” they should keep going.

If we want our kids to be more engaged in school – we need to help them see the connection between school and what they plan for their future.

“Why?” is a great question for us adults, too.

Resources are limited. For all of us. It makes sense to ask ourselves why we do the things we do – so we can spend our time, money and energy on what matters most to us.

In fact, “why” is the question I’m asking myself today.

Life After IEPs is now one year old. And I’m asking myself some questions.

The first is  - Why do I spend time publishing this blog?

I want to create something that empowers and encourages you and your child. Adolescence is a wild and wonderful time of life  - your relationship with one another is changing, and so are the “rules of the road”.  There are new curves and bumps to navigate. I want to share tools and stories that help you get where you want to go.

Also, the blog is a creative outlet for me. It stretches me to learn and grow in all sorts of ways – and connects me with people and organizations that share my passion for youth and parent empowerment.

This all aligns with some of my other Big Questions (who am I? what’s important to me? how can I contribute?).  My life is more joyful when the things I do align with my answers to Big Questions.

One question leads to another

Blogging is a new medium for me. When I teach, consult or coach, I’m interacting with and learning from people. I get input and feedback that blogging doesn’t provide.

I got to thinking – how can I find out what you want and need, and what is most important to you?  Each question led to others – until I had drafted a survey – which I hope to share with you soon.

As Einstein said – the important thing is to keep questioning!

Your turn

I absolutely LOVE it when you leave a comment or send an email!

How do you keep in touch with what’s most important to you? Has your child begun asking his or her own Big Questions? Anything else you’d like to talk about?

Hope to hear from you!

Please share this post if you enjoyed it. Thanks!

Photo credit: fontplay.com at Flickr

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