Why ‘Why’ Is The Least Helpful Interrogative Question

Why ‘Why’ Is The Least Helpful Interrogative Question

Why ‘why’ is the least helpful interrogative question.

I was reminded yesterday of the potential negative impact that the ‘why’ question can have.

Someone asked me ‘why did you choose that’. I instantly found myself defending my choice, even though it wasn’t that big a deal, and they were not being aggressive with the question.

Whilst, I quickly caught myself. It is useful to remember that the ‘why’ interrogative can trigger us; it can be felt linked to our identity. As such we can become defensive and feel that we are personally under attack. For that reason, when having conversations with colleagues and families, try reframing questions.

Other helpful questions can begin with What, Where, When, How or Who interrogatives instead. If it impacts you, you can share how it does at the same time.

Finally, whilst at times asking ‘why; can be powerful. You may also begin to notice how ‘why’ questions can often be less helpful when talking to yourself. Often bringing out the inner critic without adding value.

What, Where, When, How or Who…

See if you notice the difference!

Is there a question that raises your hackles, or do you have a go to question, that gives you great answers or extra motivation?

Simona Hamblet


About Simona Hamblet

Simona works with partners and law firm owners, to take back control of their time, complete projects, develop their leadership skills, enjoy more of life and work, and grow their practices with greater ease. In addition to high-end professional coaching & training. Simona has over 20 years of experience as an employment solicitor and partner in a multi-office law firm (focusing on staff development & business growth).

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