The fundamental five questions for best living that need to be asked are not new to anybody. They are the five “W’s”. The key to these questions leading to daily life improvement is how they are applied. The number of decisions we make each day, each hour…each minute is staggering. Most of these decisions we make we do without thinking, as they are small choices and require less focus. Others require more focus. Much more. I’m constantly amazed by how few instances in which these five questions are employed. The application of these questions (and the resulting answers) is integral to long term goal achievement and overall contentment in life. Here is a look at the fundamental five questions for best living in more depth and advice on how you can begin employing them when it counts.
Fundamental Five Questions For Best Living – Question#1: Who will this affect?
In the era of selfies, facebook and instagram, it is difficult for a person to remember others during the decision making process. More than ever before, society is caught up in “the self”. How do I look? Who’s watching me do this? What will these people think of me?
Me, me, me.
It’s sad, really. How much time we spend weighing how we are viewed by others. The hard fact is, we have very little control on how others choose to perceive us. There is an image we can portray, yes – though this image will be always skewed by another’s biases. Removing the “self” from the decision making process allows you to focus on the choice itself. In doing so, you’re left with the fundamental five questions for best living. The first question (arguably the most obvious) after removing self is, “who else will be affected by the decision I make?” Decisions always have ripple effects, whether we realize it or not. If you’re not certain how much, simply ask your father or a friend who is married about the one decision they wished they had consulted their spouse on before they had made it. You may find hesitation in their answer, Understand, this hesitation is not for lack events, the person asked is simply searching their memory for which decision had the most negative impact. If a relationship is long enough, there will be a myriad of regretful decisions to choose from. Realizing potential repercussions early on in the decision making process allows opportunity to either inform the other parties or at least time to make consideration for the impact the choice made will have. Asking yourself “Who will this affect?” can save you time, future headache and is integral to creating lasting, successful relationships.
Fundamental Five Questions For Best Living – Question#2: What does this decision do to bring me closer to my longterm goals?
Not every decision is going to play a role in reaching your long term goals. Though some will. It’s also more often than you think. Many small decisions will affect your long term planning and happiness. Provided you remain cognisant of this fact, you will give each decision the time it deserves. If the choice has no impact on your long term goals, than it will be relatively low priority and will be made quickly. If the choice will at least in some manner, play a role in the outcome of reaching long term goals, you need to give it the time it deserves. The fundamental five questions for best living are exactly that. Fundamental. These questions, when answered truthfully, will always run parallel to your core values and what brings you contentment as a person. Asking yourself fundamental questions at each opportunity works as a successful strategy to meet long term goals. Consider the practice much like a “sanity check” for maintaining happiness. Often why people find themselves unhappy is because they’ve lost sight of their path – that which defined happiness and purpose for them. We can easily lose sight of what’s important in life. There are a number of distractions around contributing to this daily. The only safegaurd for this distraction is to have mechanisms in place which offer us a reminder. Hence the fundamental five questions for better living. If you can ask and answer these questions at regular intervals, they become habit. Once they are, your likelihood of veering off the path – whether it be pursuing you passion or reaching a smaller goal on the way to a long term goal, asking the five fundamental questions for best living will reduce the possibility of you going off course and finding yourself asking, “What does it all mean?”
Fundamental Five Questions For Best Living – Question#3: When do I need to do this?
Asking when might be the question that will see your life improve the most in the shortest amount of time. In my own experience, until I learned how to ask the fundamental five questions for best living, I spent much of my time…well, I wasted much of my time on tasks which weren’t important. By asking yourself “When do I need to do this?” you may find that a number of tasks you spend much of your time doing aren’t worthwhile. Not only are these items not critical to your everyday well-being, they aren’t even critical to your long term goals. When asking this question, you may find instances where the answer is “never”. When such instances happen, remove the task from your list and do so without delay, or guilt. Living your best life means living in the present. If you are only ever working towards future happiness, then you will be running a deficit in your current contentment. Life has to have balance. In this way, you need to prioritize activities in life. How are your relationships? Are there some relationships when considered in the big picture, that are suffering because you are focusing too much in one area? I can tell you from my own personal experience as a writer, this issue is a daily battle. Chunks of time can simply disappear while writing, especially when the writing is going well. In these times, I have to be especially diligent to keep relationships in mind. Whether it’s spending time with loved ones or making time for a long overdue visit with a friend, best living is about keeping perspective. Don’t be afraid to take a step back when pressure mounts and ask yourself, “When do I need to do this?”
Fundamental Five Questions For Best Living – Question#4: Where will this decision take me?
Asking yourself where a decision will take you is important in a few ways. First is when considering the value of your own time and how you can leverage it. Sometimes making a decision means you will be commiting yourself much more than you want or need to. If you haven’t asked this question, you should, especially when it is in the service of others. Understanding the value of your own time means asking not only yourself, but others involved this follow-up question. If you commit time in the service of others, be very clear from the outset what resources you have to offer. This manages expectations and also makes it clear to the other parties that your time has value and you can not afford to waste it. If this distinction is not made, you may find you’re giving up more time than you wanted to, more often than you wanted to. The benefit of asking the fundamental five questions for best living means knowing how to commit responsibly, for the betterment of all parties involved.
Second, asking where a decision will take you is important in realizing opportunity. Sometimes by agreeing to help somebody, or taking part in an event will open a door towards new prospects which will allow you to meet your long term goals sooner. Alternately, the decision may bring you much more life balance and contentment. If there is an opportunity that comes up after asking yourself this question, you need to seize it everytime it does.
Fundamental Five Questions For Best Living – Question#5: Why do I need to make this decision?
Having a reason why is what drives us all. The reason why is what gives us impetus to get out of bed and take on the world each day. Knowing “why” means knowing yourself. If you’re uncertain as to why you are making a decision, or more importantly why you even need to – then don’t be afraid to hit the pause button. There is a lot of pressure in our world to make a decision now. Much of the reason can be attributed to a lack of present-mindedness. People who are uptight, anxious…even angry are typically experiencing these emotions because they are either living in the past or future, though not the here and now. In doing so, that emotion can carry over into the present. I see this in traffic on a daily basis when somebody is tailgating another, virtually using their vehicle as a weapon, to force another driver into a decision so that the angry driver can get what they want. You also will see it on the office, where one employee will be talking to another, exchanging a genuine hello and asking them how they are doing. The other employee simply answers with a cursory nod or a “yeah, good” and then either moves on, or moves into another line of conversation. Present-minded thinking allows you to ask more often “why do I need to make this decision”, regardless of outside influences. By answering this question for yourself, you will find clarity on what’s important to you in life as well as an ability to simply say “no”. Being able to say “no” will allow you to learn to say “yes” when you should, only because you’ve already answered for yourself why you need to make the decision you are saying yes to.
Fundamental Five Questions For Best Living – Bonus Question: How can this decision make for best living?
Once you have asked any or all of the other questions, the answer to how should be pretty clear to you. If it isn’t clear, then ask yourself the question and don’t be satisfied until you’re able to answer it. Answering the question may show you that you may need to make some alterations to your decisions before you follow through on it. If you answer the how, act on the decision with complete commitment. You’ve already answered the other important questions for yourself and now you finally understand how it will make your life the best it can be.
The five fundamental questions for best living can be used to serve as a road map to meeting our long term goals and providing clarity on what’s most important to us. When used to this end, the questions will provide an unending source of contentment with decisions and confidence to make more.