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Coaching Guide

Learn the essentials.

Total Read: 25 Minutes

Introduction

Welcome to the Inqwire Coaching Guide.

Inqwire is designed to help you think faster and more clearly about nearly anything in your personal life.

You tell The Inqwire Facilitator what you want to talk about, and it will listen and respond with questions that are specifically designed to help you consider things you haven't thought of before and think about things in new or different ways, which is a key part to having insights.

You can start a session with Inqwire by using one of many starters around common life topics.

Or you can simply write a few sentences about what’s on your mind, and the Facilitator will find ideas for what to talk about.

No two sessions with Inqwire will be identical. Each will evolve as you make new connections and explore different topics. As long as you have new things talk about, the Facilitator will be ready with new questions to ask.

The more you talk with the Facilitator, the more it improves, by building a model of your life that you curate and manage.

This life model allows the Facilitator to ask you better questions, and to help accelerate your thinking so you can find insights significantly faster and more effectively than trying to sort things out in your head.

All of the insights or realizations you have across all your sessions with Inqwire can be captured as a record of the knowledge you gain as you reach greater clarity about your life.

And what's more, is that while you talk with the Facilitator, it simultaneously trains you to ask yourself better questions, so that even when you're away from your computer or phone, and you need to sort something out, you'll have the cognitive skills to help you.


Stage 1: Life Model Articulation

Modeling isn't about including everything, it’s about including the biggest players, the largest influences, so you can get a sense of the whole without getting caught up in the details.

A map is a kind of model that helps you navigate an area of terrain. You don’t need to represent every blade of grass on the map in order to navigate to where you want to go. All you need on your map are the most important and meaningful landmarks for it to work.

The same applies when you’re creating a model of your life.

Step 1

The first step is to create a list of the most significant and important aspects in your life for each category.

You can see a list of categories in the scratch area on the left, and you can see descriptions and examples of each category when you click into a text area below a category, or by clicking on the question mark icon next to each category header.

For each category, think about your life and scan your memory for the aspects that subjectively feel like they are or have been significant and important in your life. Make sure to scan your entire life since the beginning.

When scanning your life, you want to look for the big aspects, the ones you know inside and out. These might be things you are bored with, or “over and done with”. They are the sorts of things you tell acquaintances who are trying to get to know who you really are, or the things you might tell a biographer who is trying to paint an accurate picture of your life. These aspects should represent the truth of your life.

As aspects come to mind, write them down the scratch area. Take your time on this and frequently ask yourself, “is this true?”

You want to practice being honest with yourself. You may be forced to challenge beliefs about what is truly significant, meaningful, or important in your life.

Consider all of the following criteria when scanning your memory for aspects:

  • Significant
  • Important
  • Meaningful
  • Formative
  • Fundamental

Notice that each of these criteria can bring to mind completely different aspects. For example, the most influential aspects in your life might not be particular meaningful to you, or the most significant aspects might not all be the most influential.

Notice that it’s possible for some aspects in your life to fit into multiple different categories. If Gandalf the wizard was modeling the role of magic in his life, he might enter a Relationship to magic, or enter an identity “The Wizard”, or enter a state “feeling magical”. Try to categorize aspects in ways that make the most sense to you.

Also notice that some aspects can be hard to label or title, and that changing the label you give an aspect can make a difference in how easy it is for you think about it.

If you find yourself writing out an aspect and then asking, “what does that even mean?”, you might be labeling something a certain way because that’s what you’ve been taught to call it instead of the way that is the clearest and most meaningful to you. You want try and label things in a way that feels the most plainly honest and true.

While doing this exercise, let yourself reflect and think, walk around if you need to. Make sure to take a break if you feel yourself getting tired or fatigued.

It could take you up to a couple hours of work for each of the 12 categories, and will require multiple sessions to complete this step.

Step 2

Positive and Negative Patterns

Now you’re going to review your aspects to see if there are positive or negative patterns.

It can be easier for the brain to bring to mind aspects that match the mood or state you might be in right now. If you’re in a bad or negative mood, it’s likely that the easiest aspects to think of are also bad or negative.

In contrast, it can be harder to think of positive aspects when your mood is negative. But just by noticing this, you can actively overcome it.

For example, when looking at your aspects in the Life Experiences category, can you imagine some that would be easier or harder to bring to mind when you’re feeling either bad or good about life?

Go back through all of your lists and notice if there are any patterns that suggest whether you were biased towards a particular positive or negative mood while thinking of aspects.

If you see more of one or the other in each category or any other indicator you selected by mood, try to imagine what aspects you would recall if you were in the opposite mood and add any that seem significant.

Take your time before moving on.

Resolved and Unresolved Aspects

Next, go back to each list of aspects and mark the aspects that are unresolved (You could separate them from the others, or put something next to them in the list like “#”).

Unresolved aspects are the ones that have a strong pull on you. They often are the ones that make you feel bad or depressed right now. They also might represent puzzles in your life that you desperately want to sort out. They are likely to be things that are more recent, or the things that have been on your mind - where you want answers and you have questions.

Not all negative aspects are unresolved aspects. You will need to notice the difference between recognizing that an aspect is negative and feeling negatively about an aspect.

For example, you might have gone through a significantly negative life experience a long time ago. But now when you think about it, you might be “over it”, or even able to laugh about it. That’s still a negative life experience, but it doesn’t make you feel bad anymore, so you would consider it resolved.

It’s also possible for positive aspects to be unresolved. For example, there may be something you value that you do not currently have in your life right now.

Even though the value itself may be positive, bringing it to mind right now might be painful because it reminds you of something you are missing.

Resolved aspects are either difficult things in your life that you made sense out of already, or they’re aspects that were never ‘unresolved’ in the first place.

For the remainder of the program, you’re only going to work with aspects in your life that are resolved.

The unresolved aspects are candidates for life projects to work on after you’ve finished this program.

If you end up with less than 5 resolved aspects in any category, you may want to spend more time looking deeper, but if you can’t find more and only end up with just one or two in a particular category, that’s ok.

If you have more than 10 in a category, you should prioritize them by importance or significance. You can always decide later to remove aspects that aren’t adding much to your understanding.

This could take you between a half hour and a couple hours to complete.

Why remove unresolved aspects?

You want to avoid having aspects in your model that bother you so much, or make you feel so crummy that it interferes with your ability to focus on the whole of your life as you go through this process.

You’re trying to get clear on life from its first principles. You’re trying to work on foundational things, that when revised, will ripple through your entire life. There’s no point in moving on to things that are bothering you until your understanding of your life is resting on a solid foundation.

As an analogy - imagine if you were inside the Leaning Tower of Pizza. Everywhere you look, pictures aren’t hanging straight and furniture is piling up on one side of the room. If you wanted to level out the tower, there’s no point trying to level the picture frames. Being reminded the picture frames are crooked might pull you into trying to straighten the pictures when you may just need to go down and work on the foundation.

When modeling your life, you want to work with the foundational aspects of your life because if you find things that change, those changes can ripple through your whole model. Many other things will shift and could even get resolved as the outcome of resolving big foundational things.

This life modeling process is the only time you’ll be doing this comprehensive, big-picture review of your life. After you’re done, you’ll have an accurate, up to date life model that will help you as you return to working out any remaining unresolved things in your life.

Step 3

If you haven’t already, start by entering the aspects from the first 2 categories in your scratch area (Values and Principles), into your model.

Use the Add button in the header of each category.

Make sure to select whether the aspect is from your past or present. You shouldn’t be entering any future aspects right now. Also mark the start and end dates that apply to each aspect.

This is an opportunity to be very honest with yourself again and only add aspects that are true.

For every aspect you’re adding, ask yourself, is this really true? Is this in the right category? Is this labeled correctly?

Sometimes you could label something that, on closer inspection, makes you think, what does that even mean? It’s best to label things that are true to how you understand them and that feel as close to reality as possible.

The key is to listen to your intuition. Stay close to what feels right and true, and try to recognize when you might be fooling yourself.

When you’re ready, continue to stage 2 to start viewing your lenses,. After you’re done viewing your lenses for these categories, you will return here to add the next category of aspects into your model, return to your lenses, then repeat this for all the categories of your life.

Why remove unresolved aspects?


Introduction

Welcome to the Inqwire Coaching Guide.

Inqwire is designed to help you think faster and more clearly about nearly anything in your personal life.

You tell The Inqwire Facilitator what you want to talk about, and it will listen and respond with questions that are specifically designed to help you consider things you haven't thought of before and think about things in new or different ways, which is a key part to having insights.

You can start a session with Inqwire by using one of many starters around common life topics.

Or you can simply write a few sentences about what’s on your mind, and the Facilitator will find ideas for what to talk about.

No two sessions with Inqwire will be identical. Each will evolve as you make new connections and explore different topics. As long as you have new things talk about, the Facilitator will be ready with new questions to ask.

The more you talk with the Facilitator, the more it improves, by building a model of your life that you curate and manage.

This life model allows the Facilitator to ask you better questions, and to help accelerate your thinking so you can find insights significantly faster and more effectively than trying to sort things out in your head.

All of the insights or realizations you have across all your sessions with Inqwire can be captured as a record of the knowledge you gain as you reach greater clarity about your life.

And what's more, is that while you talk with the Facilitator, it simultaneously trains you to ask yourself better questions, so that even when you're away from your computer or phone, and you need to sort something out, you'll have the cognitive skills to help you.


Introduction

Welcome to the Inqwire Coaching Guide.

Inqwire is designed to help you think faster and more clearly about nearly anything in your personal life.

You tell The Inqwire Facilitator what you want to talk about, and it will listen and respond with questions that are specifically designed to help you consider things you haven't thought of before and think about things in new or different ways, which is a key part to having insights.

You can start a session with Inqwire by using one of many starters around common life topics.

Or you can simply write a few sentences about what’s on your mind, and the Facilitator will find ideas for what to talk about.

No two sessions with Inqwire will be identical. Each will evolve as you make new connections and explore different topics. As long as you have new things talk about, the Facilitator will be ready with new questions to ask.

The more you talk with the Facilitator, the more it improves, by building a model of your life that you curate and manage.

This life model allows the Facilitator to ask you better questions, and to help accelerate your thinking so you can find insights significantly faster and more effectively than trying to sort things out in your head.

All of the insights or realizations you have across all your sessions with Inqwire can be captured as a record of the knowledge you gain as you reach greater clarity about your life.

And what's more, is that while you talk with the Facilitator, it simultaneously trains you to ask yourself better questions, so that even when you're away from your computer or phone, and you need to sort something out, you'll have the cognitive skills to help you.


Introduction

Welcome to the Inqwire Coaching Guide.

Inqwire is designed to help you think faster and more clearly about nearly anything in your personal life.

You tell The Inqwire Facilitator what you want to talk about, and it will listen and respond with questions that are specifically designed to help you consider things you haven't thought of before and think about things in new or different ways, which is a key part to having insights.

You can start a session with Inqwire by using one of many starters around common life topics.

Or you can simply write a few sentences about what’s on your mind, and the Facilitator will find ideas for what to talk about.

No two sessions with Inqwire will be identical. Each will evolve as you make new connections and explore different topics. As long as you have new things talk about, the Facilitator will be ready with new questions to ask.

The more you talk with the Facilitator, the more it improves, by building a model of your life that you curate and manage.

This life model allows the Facilitator to ask you better questions, and to help accelerate your thinking so you can find insights significantly faster and more effectively than trying to sort things out in your head.

All of the insights or realizations you have across all your sessions with Inqwire can be captured as a record of the knowledge you gain as you reach greater clarity about your life.

And what's more, is that while you talk with the Facilitator, it simultaneously trains you to ask yourself better questions, so that even when you're away from your computer or phone, and you need to sort something out, you'll have the cognitive skills to help you.


Introduction

Welcome to the Inqwire Coaching Guide.

Inqwire is designed to help you think faster and more clearly about nearly anything in your personal life.

You tell The Inqwire Facilitator what you want to talk about, and it will listen and respond with questions that are specifically designed to help you consider things you haven't thought of before and think about things in new or different ways, which is a key part to having insights.

You can start a session with Inqwire by using one of many starters around common life topics.

Or you can simply write a few sentences about what’s on your mind, and the Facilitator will find ideas for what to talk about.

No two sessions with Inqwire will be identical. Each will evolve as you make new connections and explore different topics. As long as you have new things talk about, the Facilitator will be ready with new questions to ask.

The more you talk with the Facilitator, the more it improves, by building a model of your life that you curate and manage.

This life model allows the Facilitator to ask you better questions, and to help accelerate your thinking so you can find insights significantly faster and more effectively than trying to sort things out in your head.

All of the insights or realizations you have across all your sessions with Inqwire can be captured as a record of the knowledge you gain as you reach greater clarity about your life.

And what's more, is that while you talk with the Facilitator, it simultaneously trains you to ask yourself better questions, so that even when you're away from your computer or phone, and you need to sort something out, you'll have the cognitive skills to help you.


How to Start a Secure Session

In this section we're going to cover the basics of data security with Inqwire and how to start a new session.

When you talk about your life, there's no doubt that you're going to touch on some pretty personal details. And no one wants that kind of information stored somewhere on the Internet.

With Inqwire, nothing you talk about during a session ever gets saved on the Internet, aka “our servers”.

Instead, your data is saved to files that get stored on your computer. If you're using the desktop app, this process is handled for you automatically. But if you're using Inqwire in your web browser, you'll need to manage the data saving and loading process manually.

Whenever you want to start a new session in your browser, all you have to do is upload your file.

At the end of your session, a new file containing any new data you created during that session will be automatically saved to your computer.

This means no one can see anything you write or anything you talk about during a session.

So what are you going to talk about during a session? When you're sorting something out, you need to work with the relevant aspects of life.

In Inqwire, these are called Topics, like conversation topics. Before the Facilitator can start asking you questions, you first need to enter some topics.

If you're using a starter, the first topics will come preloaded into the session for you. You might need to edit the specifics, but otherwise you're ready to start.

If you are starting from scratch, without a starter, there are two ways to add your first topics to the session. You either have something specific in mind, or you want to write it out.

Sometimes we know exactly what we want to talk about. For this option, Inqwire provides a simple and quick way to enter specific topics in a form that Inqwire can work with.

Other times, we might not know exactly what's bothering us, and it's often helpful to just write out what's on your mind.

For this option, you only need to write a sentence or maybe a few, and the Facilitator will look at your writing and come up with some ideas for topics you could add to the session.

Depending on the situation, it might make sense to add just 1 topic, or it might make sense to add a few.

For example, maybe you want to get clarity around the relationship you have to an important person in your life. You could enter that person as the topic for this session, and start from there.

Or, maybe you're trying to make a difficult decision, and it involves many different factors, like the things you value, the people in your life, your long term plans or goals, etc. You could enter everything that might be relevant to your decision, and begin.

Some topics you add to the session might feel very relevant. But others might only feel somewhat relevant, where you want those topics to exist in the context of the session, but you don't necessarily want to focus on them.

With Inqwire, this is easy to do. Simply toggle on or off the option to mark a topic as either very relevant or somewhat relevant.

Don't worry about making any mistakes when adding topics. It's easy to add, remove, and change the relevance of topics at any time during the session.

So now that you know how to add topics to the session, in the next section we're going to talk about the way you view and answer questions during a session, and how you can manage your topics as the session evolves.


Managing Topics

Once you have a topic or topics to talk about, you're ready to start viewing questions.

There are two modes to work from. Chat Mode:

And Visual Mode:

Visual mode, although it's different than what you're probably used to, can be extra useful because it allows you to visually experiment with the way information is arranged on the screen. You can drag things around, make things bigger or smaller, or put things close together or far away based on how you think about them, or want to think about them. Situating concepts like this helps clarify and streamline our thinking.

When you're viewing questions, you'll notice that most questions, like this one, ask you about the connection between a particular topic and some category of life, like relationships.

If you previously added topics to the session that fall into the Relationships category, or if you have relationships in your Life Model (which we cover in the life model section), those will show up as possible connections or answers to the question at hand.

These kinds of connection questions are what help you to see patterns, connect the dots, and understand how everything works together. This is important because it's through this sort of understanding that you can uncover insights, find solutions, and reach greater clarity.

In chat mode, If you see a topic that connects, you click on it and you'll get one, 2 or a few new questions that ask specifically about the connection between those two things. If you're using visual mode, you can drag the topic into the central topic, then click to connect the two aspects.

If you don't see a topic that connects, but you can think of one, you can go ahead and add it. This will also automatically add that topic to your life model.

If you see multiple topics that connect, you can connect them one at a time, OR if you happen to see a pattern between all of the topics, you can use the text area to speak to that pattern in general.

If you're not big on writing, you don't have to write much. In fact, you don't have to write at all during your entire session. You can just answer the questions in your head. However writing can be useful during a session in a couple of ways.

First, the Facilitator processes everything you write and comes up with new ideas for more topics you could add to the session along the way. Just note that this works best if you write in clear, simple sentences.

Second, it can feel good to write out your thoughts and feelings. When you feel like it, you can write all you want, at any time.

The most important thing to keep in mind when considering answering questions is that NOT ALL QUESTIONS HAVE ANSWERS. This is kind of an obvious point, but it takes some practice to get right. It will be up to you to skip questions that don't have answers, that don't make sense to you, or that feel like too much work.

If you notice yourself spending more than a few seconds trying to make sense of a question, it's probably one to skip. Also, if you notice that every time you get a question about a certain topic, you feel annoyed, or you feel like the questions aren't relevant anymore, then that's a sign to either change how relevant that topic is to the session, or remove it completely.

This speaks to the evolving nature of a session. Over the course of even a short session, you might learn a lot. You might start see things differently. You might find new topics worth talking about. As you get further into a session, you might find that the topics you originally thought were important or relevant, are no longer relevant at all. And that's OK.

So you should never feel locked in to the topics you started with. You have to be ready to go where the session takes you, follow your curiosity, and do what feels right. There is no wrong way to do it. The number of topics you want to talk about, the amount you want to write, the speed at which you view questions, is all up to you.

You can spend all day thinking about one good question if you want. You can take a break and go for a walk. And you can change the session to talk about something completely different.

So far, we've talked about this idea of adding, connecting and changing the relevance of topics in a session, but behind the scenes, every topic that makes it's way into a session, also makes it's way into your life model.

In the next section we're going to see how this is crucial in helping you to reach insights and clarity dramatically faster than otherwise possible.


Your Life Model

At the end of the last section, we pointed out that any topic you add or connect in a session is automatically added to your life model, and that your Life Model plays a crucial part in accelerating you towards insights and clarity.

A key part to gaining clarity around life topics, is to understand how things fit in to the rest of your life. Every connection question that the Facilitator asks you helps you do this.

In the previous section, we saw the example where we were asked if there were any relationships in our life that connected to the topic at hand. If you were to sit there and scan your memory for all the relationships in your life, it might take you a few minutes. And that doesn't sound like a big deal, but it is. Because in order to uncover insights, gain clarity, and make sense of things, you need to examine the connections between many different things in your life, which means you need to consider a lot of questions.

Imagine that for every question the Facilitator asked you in a given session, it took you between 2 and 5 minutes to bring to mind all the aspects from your life in a particular category. Multiply that by a hundred or so questions, which is pretty typical of a session with Inqwire, and it quickly adds up to be a multi-hour long session. This problem exists simply because our memory is slow. However, we recognize information much faster, in a fraction of a second.

So for every question, if all we had to do was recognize information that's already there on the screen, and we didn't have to slowly search our memory every time, then it might only take a few seconds to consider all the connections involved in a single question.

With this kind of speed, now we're talking about only a matter of minutes to finish an in depth, meaningful session with yourself where you considered all the essential connections in your life. So how do we go from the speed of memory, to the speed of recognition?

This is where your life model comes in. By keeping track of all the life topics that make it into your session, you'll automatically see those topics in the context of the relevant questions you see.

Inqwire keeps track of all the life topics that make it into EVERY session, meaning that as you use Inqwire more, all of the relevant life topics you've entered from past sessions will appear in the context of relevant questions you're asked in future sessions with Inqwire.

This feature is designed to help you see larger patterns, increase the quality of insights, and make sense of your life as a whole.

You have the opportunity to set up an initial life model before starting your very first session with Inqwire. Your life model isn't going to be perfect when you first set it up. But as you use Inqwire, you'll be able to continually manage and update your life model, adding new aspects of your life that are missing, removing aspects that aren't that important anymore.

You can think of it as though you're managing the background information you give the Facilitator about your life. If you were talking to a person, it'd make sense to give them some background information about your life so they have more context around what you're talking about, and so they can ask you more intelligent questions.

The more complete, the more relevant, the more up to date your life model is, the better and potentially more insightful the questions from the Facilitator can be.

Before you start your very first session, you'll be asked to add some topics to your life model so that your first session with Inqwire can be more insightful. As a general rule of thumb, you want to aim for about 3 life aspects for every category.

These aspects should be big, obvious things in your life. Things that are important or significant. If you have trouble on any particular category, that's OK, just skip it for now.

So far we've only mentioned this idea of having insights, which is one of the most exciting parts of using Inqwire. So in the next section, we're going to talk about what to expect when it comes to having insights with Inqwire, and how to capture them when they strike.


Capturing Insights

In the last section, we learned about Your Life Model, and how it plays a crucial role in accelerating you towards insights and clarity. But we didn't talk about what to do when you have an insight, also known as an epiphany, a breakthrough, or a eureka moment.

First, it's easy to think that a successful session with Inqwire is one that results in a big, clarifying insight. In reality, if all you did was make some time to sit down and check in with yourself, and just ask yourself, "hey how are you?", "what's on your mind?", "what's bothering you?", that can go along way. And even if you have a long session with Inqwire, you view a lot of questions, and you still don't have an insight, you might feel like you still made progress, which is definitely something to count as a success.

It's hard to say how soon and how often you can expect to have insights with Inqwire. You might be in a session for only a few minutes and have a quality insight about something. Other times it might take multiple long sessions before reaching an insight.

In some cases, you might not have enough information to reach an insight about something, meaning that you have go out and get that information, whether it's through looking something up on online, asking someone else a question, or just experiencing more of life in general. Some things in life take years before they're ripe for insights. That's OK, in the meantime, there's lots of things in life to get clarity around.

Inqwire is designed to increase the chance that you'll have insights, but there's no guarantee that you'll have an insight during every session. But, for the sessions when you do have an insight, you're going to want a way to capture it when the insight strikes.

When you have an insight, you can capture it with the insight capture button.

All of your insights across all of your sessions with Inqwire will be recorded for you under Insights and saved within your Data File.

Some insights you experience might stay with you for the rest of your life, others might only hold up for a few days, being replaced in the future by new insights after you gain new understanding that makes you see things differently. You can think of your Insights as a sort of living document, an ever changing record of the insights that help you reach more and more clarity about life.

In the next section, we're going to offer you a tool that you can use to help yourself navigate towards greater clarity over time, and in the final section in this series, we'll also give you some tips and things you can try to help increase the chance of having insights.


Your Life Outlook

In the last section we talked about insights and how to capture them. But as you now know, insights aren't always required for a successful session. Another way to know if you've had a successful session, is if your outlook on life improves.

Whenever you start a new session or continue a previous session with Inqwire, you'll be asked about your outlook on life. When you set the sliders, you capture a snapshot of how you currently feel.

At the end of the session, you'll be asked about your life outlook again. This will show you if your outlook on life has changed and if you feel any different from when you started.

Sometimes it's obvious when you feel better, but other times the difference can be subtle. By recording your life outlook before and after each session, you get practice with paying attention to those subtle changes in how you feel. This can give you a clue about whether you're on a path towards greater clarity.

Whether your life outlook goes up, stays the same or goes down after a session, consider how that session went. What topics did you talk about? How many questions did you view? How long was your session? Did you have insights? Did you uncover any new topics or aspects to add? What might you try differently next time?

Through reflecting on each session like this, you might learn what leads to better sessions. And this may not only help you to have better sessions with Inqwire, but it can also serve as a sort of training to help you have better conversations with yourself.

If you think about it, we're constantly talking things through in our head as we go about the day. Often what we're doing is trying to sort something out or making sense of something. So everything you learn about managing a session with Inqwire, including how certain topics or styles of thinking affect your life outlook, and the kinds of questions you ask yourself, can all be applied to enhance your ability to reach clarity even while you're away from the computer.

Now that you have a way to track and understand your own experiences with Inqwire, for the final section of this series, we're going to help you avoid some common pitfalls and provide you with some tips to help you have sessions where you're more likely to have insights and gain clarity.


Tips and Troubleshooting

So far in this series you've learned about all the important parts of Inqwire, from how to manage topics, how to view and answer questions, all about your life model, how to capture insights, and your life outlook. In this last section, you're going to learn some tips for having better sessions with Inqwire, including how to overcome some common pitfalls, as well as some things to try if you're struggling to reach insights or gain clarity. So first, here are a few general tips.

1. Don't feel discouraged if you don't make a ton of progress in your first session.

There are a lot of factors that lead to a great session, and not all of them are in your control. That's OK, just keep at it. You've also got to give yourself some time to learn your way around Inqwire. Just as with any tool, as you use it more, the more comfortable and skilled you'll get.

2. Only answer questions that have answers.

This point is worth mentioning again because it's harder than it sounds to put into practice. When someone asks us a question, we can feel compelled to answer it, even if it doesn't make sense or have a real answer. But the Inqwire Facilitator isn't a person, and it won't feel bad if you say “NEXT!” as many times as you want until you hit a good question. If you feel yourself lingering on a question that doesn't seem to make sense, or it feels like too much work, that's a cue to just skip it.

3. Change a topic's category if the questions don't seem right.

There are many things in life that can be thought of in different ways. Let's say you want to talk about stress. Well, how do you think about stress? Does you want to talk about your relationship to stress? do you think of it as a state of mind? Is stress really a behavior where you stress out about things? Or is it an identity, where you think of yourself as a stressed person?

For topics like this where you can think of it in different ways, pick the category where it makes the most sense to you. If the questions you get about it don't feel right, or sound kind of weird or off, try changing the topic to a different category that works.

If you've been using Inqwire and you're not having insights or you don't feel like things are getting clearer, here are some things to try:

1. Go faster and view more questions.

Sometimes, finding an insight is a matter of looking in all the possible places. Each question that the Facilitator asks you is designed to help you look somewhere new. It's as if you've lost your keys in the dark, and the Facilitator, armed with a flashlight, is helping you look for them by asking, “are your keys over there?” No. “Are your keys over here?” No. “Hm, what about over there?” If you have a lot of places you need to look, it's better to move a little faster and leave no stone unturned.

2. Explore a variety of related topics.

If you've thought a lot about a topic already and you haven't had any insights, chances are, you're not going to have an insight by thinking more about that topic in the same way you've been thinking about it. Instead, try to adjust the session towards topics that are related to the thing you're trying to get clarity around, even if these topics seem tangential and unlikely to reveal anything new. You might be surprised.

3. Follow your curiosity.

When you're trying to make sense of something, it's as if you're conducting an investigation. As you view questions, you're searching for clues that might lead you to a missing piece of the puzzle. But sometimes there are many options for paths you could explore. How do you choose?

Any great investigator relies on their sense of curiosity to help them decide what investigative paths to take. A sense of curiosity serves as a helpful guide when looking for insights. If you're struggling to uncover insights and you feel lost for where else to look, try tapping in to your sense of curiosity. The more you do this, the more confident you will become when navigating through a session.

4. Sleep on it and start over tomorrow.

If you feel yourself getting fatigued while in a session, maybe you've been at it for a while, then put Inqwire away, and come back to it tomorrow. Then when you come back, try starting over from scratch with a new session. Sometimes you need to give your brain some time away from the problem. You might find that when you start again from scratch, it's easier to articulate things, which can lead to a more insightful or productive session.

5. Shelf it and talk about something else.

If you've really tried everything, and you aren't making any headway at all on a particular topic, it could be that this topic needs more time before it's ripe for insight.

In the meantime, try and switch to a completely unrelated topic. Try something from your past that you think you know and understand really well. Often to our surprise, there are insights just waiting to be revealed when we revisit these topics with fresh eyes and ask ourselves different kinds of questions about them. When we uncover insights like these, they are often powerful and far reaching, and they can help us get clearer on what's going on in the present across many aspects of our lives.

Now, some final things to keep in the back of your mind while using Inqwire:

1. You don't have to talk about anything you're not comfortable with.

There's no reason to talk about things that might be uncomfortable, upsetting, or painful unless you want to talk about it. Don't feel pressured to answer any question. If a question ever makes you feel like you don't want to go there, skip it.

2. You decide when you're done with a session.

There's no countdown timer to tell you when time's up. You can be done when there are no more questions, you can be done when you have an insight, you can be done when you're tired, you can be done when you find a really good question you want to take with you. Bottom line, it's up to you.

3. And finally, a little bit of time each day goes a long way towards clarity.

If all you do is check in with yourself for a few minutes or answer a couple of questions, even if you don't have insights or feel like you make progress, it's still a win.

If you want to learn more about the science behind any of the topics we touched on, like how Inqwire helps you find insights faster, the positive benefits of making sense of life, what life outlook is really about, or a whole host of other topics related to the science of making sense, check out the Inqwire Science Guide.

And if you run into any issues, have any questions, feedback or advice, email us at [email protected]

Scratch Area
Use the text areas below to capture ideas for life aspects you may want to enter into your model.
Values


Principles


Life Missions


States


Behaviors


Beliefs


Identities


Adversities and Challenges


Chapters


Cultures and Groups


Relationships


Life Experiences


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