Last month’s In Case Of Emergency list drew a lot of comments and got everyone thinking about organizing the business part of their lives.
This month I’m giving you The List: Questions For Someone Special. They aren’t Fifty Shades of Grey kind of questions… Not necessarily that kind of “Someone” or that kind of “Special.”
You can ask them of your partner, your parents, your kids, a close friend, or someone you’d like to know on a deeper level.
What’s So Great About These Questions
Here’s why I like these questions: You might think your life is an open book. You might believe you’ve shared everything there is to know about yourself. You might believe you know every chapter your Someone Special has experienced.
And just like there is always another chapter to be written, there’s always another chapter that hasn’t been told.
Several years ago my husband and I attended a couples’ retreat in the Bahamas. One afternoon we were given a homework assignment: Find a quiet spot where we would not be distracted and answer a simple set of questions. I remember thinking it seemed like a pretty trivial exercise but being good sports, Dave and I decided to go for a walk on the beach, questions in hand.
The first question was, “What name do you like to be called and why?” I’m fairly certain we each rolled our eyes and made a feeble attempt to answer. Admittedly, it felt a little odd, and maybe we were a touch nervous. But why would we be nervous? These were simple questions.
We continued and soon realized, even after all those years of marriage, there were things neither of us knew about the other. Answering those simple little questions turned into a lovely, memorable afternoon.
I’ve since done something similar with our kids, friends, and other family members. Without fail, I always learn something new about the people in my life. And they learn something about me too.
So Much to Be Discovered
Are there things to discover about people you love? Have you ever unplugged from everything and devoted an hour to find out? To simply listen? Would you be willing to try?
Make your own memorable afternoon. It’s a nice little gift to give each other.
Ready? Set. Go!
Who would you like to spend some time with? Your spouse? A good friend? One of your kids? A parent? Forward this article and the questions to whoever you choose.
Allow time–maybe a day– for both of you to consider your answers and develop your thoughts. Then arrange a date for dinner, coffee, FaceTime, or any opportunity the two of you can be undisturbed for an hour.
Turn off your electronic devices, the radio, and the tv. Find a quiet spot (a rowdy bar probably doesn’t qualify) and really focus on what the other person is saying. Give them your undivided attention. Listen attentively and without judgment. Take turns answering the questions and most important . . . listen to the answers.
The List: Questions For Someone Special
- Little kids have fantasies. And also bizarre ways of interpreting their world (monsters under the bed, they’re secretly adopted, their parents are spies, etc.). Describe a fantasy or your own bizarre interpretation of the world when you were a little kid.
- Who was someone you looked up to and admired as a kid?
- In high school, were you the cool kid, the jock, the nerd, the homecoming king/queen, the class clown, or all of the above? How would your friends have described you?
- What is one past event you remember with warm, positive feelings?
- What is something you’d like to accomplish this next year?
- Describe a time when I was your Superhero.
- If I gave you a magic wand and we could go anywhere, do anything, or have an extraordinary experience, what would it be?
- What qualities do you like most about me?
I’m fairly certain you’re going to discover chapters you haven’t heard before. I’m also certain you’re going to have some laughs . . . some somber moments . . . and share a few dreams.
But the most important thing?
Sixty minutes of your undivided attention is a rare gift these days. I know because I’m just as guilty of falling victim to technology distractions as the next person.
Let me know how it goes and I’ll do the same.
Unplug. Listen. Share. Because some of those old chapters deserve to be read aloud again.