Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Most valuable player

In your day-to-day life, who's got your back? Who can you most reliably count on to help you out when you get into difficulties?

This week's theme is your team.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

When the going gets tough

Suppose that you and your team will be part of a contest of endurance in a rugged and remote place. Among the people you know, who is the most skilled and resourceful? Who would you want to have with you as you faced a challenging and unfamiliar environment?

This week's theme is your team.

Monday, September 28, 2009

On your team

Suppose you had a chance to compete on a game show where you and your friends must solve complex, unique problems or puzzles. Among all the people you know, who would you most want to have on your team?

This week's theme is your team.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Top Ten: problems you prevented

Heroes who sweep in to handle a crisis get plenty of attention and praise, but it's an often-noted irony that you rarely get credit for preventing a crisis. Nothing happens; it's a non-event; and often no one but you knows what you did to keep things from going off the rails.

What are ten problems (large or small) that you prevented, crises that you averted, or disasters that didn't happen because you were there to stop them?

You might have to dig through your memories to answer this question, but it's worth taking the time to give yourself another silent round of applause. Did your well-timed advice keep a friend from making an expensive mistake? Did you recognize someone's symptoms and help steer them towards getting appropriate medical care? Did you talk someone out of taking rash action in a moment of anger or desperation? Were you at the right place at the right time to hold things together when they otherwise would have fallen apart?

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Bon voyage!

What is one fictional place from TV, films, or novels that you wish you could actually visit?

Now imagine that your wish has been granted and you are preparing for a trip to that place. What will you pack to take with you? What will you want to do first when you get there? Who will you hope to see during your visit?

Friday, September 25, 2009

Safety net

If you were free to implement any imaginable changes to your life, what would you do to make yourself feel completely secure?

This week's theme is security and insecurity.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Before and after

Was there a milestone in your life when your sense of personal security changed?

This week's theme is security and insecurity.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Your sanctuary

What are the places or settings where you feel most secure?

This week's theme is security and insecurity.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Uneasy places

What are the places or situations where you feel generally less safe or less secure?

This week's theme is security and insecurity.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Security and insecurity

What are some of the things that you do to keep yourself feeling secure in your life? Are there some precautions or safety measures that you recently added to your routine?

This week's theme is security and insecurity.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Top Ten: Ha, who needs that!

What are ten modern conveniences that you're pretty sure you could live without?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

It should have been me

Do you sometimes feel jealous when you see other people win awards or receive recognition of their skills and accomplishments? Do you sometimes think, "I've done things that are just as worthy — how come no one's acknowledging me?"

Which situation is most likely to inspire twinges of envy in you: when a family member is praised, a friend, a casual acquaintance, or a public figure?

Morrissey drily sums up this phenomenon in his song We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful (on YouTube).

Friday, September 18, 2009

I can't believe we did that

What friend goaded you to take a crazy risk, a reckless adventure that you would never repeat today?

This week's theme is old friends.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

That's what friends are for

What friend introduced you to new culinary delights, foods that you never had at home?

This week's theme is old friends.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

With friends like these...

Which friend has given you more grief than any other over the years? Overall, has their friendship been worth the trouble?

This week's theme is old friends.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Jukebox of memories

Is there a song that, every time you hear it, reminds you of one of your earliest friends? What song is it, and what is the connection between this song and your friend?

This week's theme is old friends.

Monday, September 14, 2009

First friend ever

Who was the first friend you ever had, from early childhood? What are your earliest memories of your friend?

This week's theme is old friends.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Top Ten: new job

Putting aside practical considerations like salary, location, and training, what are ten jobs you think might be fun to try for a month?

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Learning + Opportunity = self-discovery gold!

What is today's unique opportunity? How can you apply the lessons you learned yesterday to today's unique opportunity?

Friday, September 11, 2009

A little of everything

Scientists studying nutrition made a surprising discovery: people eat too much at buffets. Faced with a wide range of choices of healthy, delicious food, people on average take far more than they need, eat more than they should, and steadily gain weight. Is this "buffet phenomenon" also responsible for everyone being too busy? Is life simply too full of tantalizing opportunities? If so, could you bring your life into balance by arbitrarily limiting the range of things that you choose from?

If you have to leave some things off your buffet of activities, how do you go about making that choice? Which kinds of activities are essential to who you are, and which could you manage to live without?

This week's theme is being too busy.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

All I need is a team of gnomes

Suppose there were magic gnomes who stop by in the middle of the night to help you with your unfinished chores. If you could give the gnomes just one task each night, what is the one thing you would ask them to do for you tonight? What is one difficult or unpleasant task that you'd be happy to let someone else take care of for you?

With a team of gnomes handling one chore a night, would that be enough extra help to bring your schedule into balance? Or would you still find yourself with too much to do?

This week's theme is being too busy.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

What's missing from this picture?

What would you like to make time for, if you could get through all of the more urgent things that you are doing right now? What are some important things that you would want to take care of if you weren't so busy? What are some fun activities that you would want to fit into your life if you could find the time?

Which things do you resent the most, because they take up time that you'd rather spend doing something else?

This week's theme is being too busy.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Busy season

Is this the busiest time in your life? Or can you think of an earlier time when you life was even busier? Was there a time in your life when you actually felt bored because you had too little to do? What happened to make you more or less busy? What kinds of events and circumstances affect how busy you are?

This week's theme is being too busy.

Monday, September 7, 2009

How busy are you?

Which of these best describes your life?
  1. I have plenty of time for everything
  2. I sometimes have too much to do
  3. I always have too much to do and too little time
  4. I only have time for things that are actually on fire
Most people say they are chronically too busy, with a profound mismatch between how much time they have available and their list of things to do. Why does that happen? Why do so many of us try to do more things than we have time for?

This week's theme is being too busy.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Top Ten: goals for 2009

New Year's Day isn't the only day when you can make resolutions! Now that we're entering the final third of the year, it's time to get serious (and realistic!) about your goals for this year.

What are ten things that you will make a point of accomplishing, ten goals that you intend to check off before New Year's Eve 2009?

Saturday, September 5, 2009

How bright is that light?

Here's a philosophical riddle for you to ponder: If more people see a light, does that make the light brighter? Or is the brightness of the light an objective measurement that's entirely separate from who might be looking at it?

Along the same lines, if more people agree with your side of an argument, does that make you more right? Or is the rightness of a statement an objective fact, entirely separate from what people think about it?

Friday, September 4, 2009

The past ends right now

Every moment gives you an opportunity to start anew and break from the past.

What is one thing you can do today to help complete and release your past, so you can be more free to move forward?

This week's theme is incompleteness.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Amends and apologies

What apologies do you still need to deliver? What harmful actions or mistakes from the past do you still need to correct? Are there debts that you must repay?

This week's theme is incompleteness.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Shadows and highlights

What periods or events from your life are the most painful for you to remember and relive?

Now, imagine that you are a professional publicist, and your task is to put a positive spin on those period of your life. How could you recast those events so that they seem like positive and necessary elements in your life story?

This week's theme is incompleteness.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

I could have been a contender

What is the biggest promise of your life that you have not yet delivered? What great potential do you carry, still unfulfilled?

If you were to die prematurely, what one thing would you most regret leaving undone?

This week's theme is incompleteness.