Sunday, January 3, 2010

Questions for the New Year

During this busy month of holidays and transition to a new year, an idea kept rising around me that the QUESTIONS in our lives have the power to steer our direction and influence our choices.

My winter meditation began on Christmas Day using a series of questions for The 12 Days of Solstice offered by the Rev. Mary Grigolia and based on insights from Carl Jung. Questions like: Who am I? What is my treasure? What is home for me? and How do I honor creativity? These questions have guided me to take stock of my choices this past year from different angles. The final question is: What are my intentions for the next cycle of growth? which puts no boundaries on the timetable for that next "cycle" and suggests only that I form intentions which will be my framework for the coming growth period.

In my training as a reference librarian, I was told that when a patron poses a reference question at the reference desk, I must ask at least 3 questions of the patron. Otherwise I will not understand what the patron really wants. And I have found this to be true. Every time.

More recently, after years as a medical and pharmaceutical librarian in large academic and corporate libraries, I found that I was no longer interested in the issues, in the questions that librarians in those environments face every day. That led me to consulting. Now I'm finding the same recognition. The questions I answer today, the issues I try to solve today are of less interest to me than when I started my consulting business. Now I'm seeking the questions that I do want to answer. What issues do I want to tackle for the next few years? What message will I be able to communicate through the questions I feel compelled to answer?

My husband and I exchange presents on Christmas Day, usually buying for each other something that we both want. This year was no different. I bought a new book for us by Dr. Jan Garavaglia (Dr. G, Medical Examiner on the Discovery Health cable channel) entitled "How Not To Die". In it Dr. G talks about how she chose forensic pathology for her life's work. She says that it is in forensics that she discovered the questions that most interested her--the ones that she wanted to answer, felt compelled to answer.

For his present, George bought Susan Boyle's new CD for us. One of the songs is "Who I Was Born To Be". The chorus is:
And though I may not know the answers,
I can finally say I'm free
And if the questions led me here, then
I am who I was born to be.

So in the light of the Blue Moon,(by modern folklore, the second full moon which rose in December), whose light crosses the New Year's boundary with casual disregard, I give you the idea of questions.

Which questions interest you? Which questions do you enjoy exploring and answering? Do you need to choose new questions? Which questions will lead you to be who were born to be?

Happy New Year!

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