Ask empowering questions of myself and others.
Appreciative Inquiry is a particular way of asking questions to envision and create a desired future. It builds on the basic goodness in a person, a situation, or an organization.
I like a positive focus that looks for what is right, not what is broken and needing to be fixed. By asking positive and empowering questions, Appreciative Inquiry seeks to discover what is already going well.
I’ve learned that whatever we focus on in life expands. We usually find what we’re looking for. Problem solvers, for example, go looking for problems to solve. In so doing, they find even more problems. The more they look, the more problems they encounter.
In this world, some people chose to be critics. They search for flaws and somehow they think they’ll look smarter by pointing out what is wrong with a particular situation.
I prefer to ask questions that focus on what is already going well. What is right? What are the strengths? When did we experience a time of exceptional success?
I also want to look at my job and to focus on what is going well. The more I focus on that, the more it will expand. I want more of what is going right, so I will probe into those areas and find ways to bring even more success into my life.
I value the advice given in Philippians 4:8 (NIV) which says “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
This idea was originally created as part of the Rejuvenation Project, a month-long challenge to find one actionable idea per day that could help me to 1) keep my batteries charged, 2) remain focused on career priorities and 3) rejuvenate the creative spirit.