Have you ever tried really hard to remember something, only to have the answer pop into your head later when you weren’t expecting it? If so, you’ve experienced the power of leaving your subconscious mind to solve problems. Here’s the interesting question: If you can put your subconscious mind to work for you for trivial questions, could it work for those “big” issues too?
Kaizen research says the answer is yes. Kaizen (pronounced ky-zin) is the Japanese principle of making small, continuous improvements to create dramatic and lasting change. One way to use kaizen is to ask small questions. When you ask small questions, your mind continues to work to find answers, making it easier for you to create the changes you want. Here are a few ways to use kaizen questions:
In your job search:
“How am I going to find a new job that fulfills me and pays me what I’m worth?” is an important question. It’s also a big and intimidating one that may leave you feeling frustrated and not particularly motivated. Instead, use kaizen questions like, “What is one simple step I can take to improve my resume?” “If I were sure that I was the most qualified candidate for the job, how would I behave in my next interview?” You’ll feel more capable and confident. Those are feelings that are more likely to land you a new job.
In your life:
Look at any change you want to create, whether it is working out more or spending more time with your family and ask a small question. For example, the questions, “What is one small way I can find more time to exercise?” or “What is one small way I can spend more quality time with my family?” will generate lots of ideas. These simple ideas will be actions that you can feel good about because they will feel easy to accomplish instead of overwhelming.
If you practice asking yourself the right kinds of small questions, you can reach your goals faster, both personally and professionally. But remember to keep the questions positive. If you ask negative questions like, “What’s wrong with me that’s stopping me from getting a job?” your mind will create answers to those questions too … and you won’t like them. Once you make it a habit to ask kaizen questions, remember to build on your success with more questions. You’ll be pleasantly surprised to see how easy and fun it is to make changes with kaizen questions.
What small question do you need to ask yourself now?