Top 12 Questions

The questions on the Top 12 List evolved out of Marilee Adams’ work with coaching clients and workshop participants over many years. The list can be used in at least three ways:

First, it is a logical sequence of questions to help you work through any situation you

might want to change or improve.

Second, you might just want to scan the list for questions you’ve been missing.

Third, you can turn to it when you’re looking for just the right question to emphasize in a particular situation.

Within this list are questions that are applicable to a variety of life’s challenges. The goal

is to integrate these questions into your everyday thinking. Then, when a challenge arises, you’ll be able to easily recall some of them. Not every question applies to every situation. That’s why you’ll want to develop a collection of your favorites and work with them on a regular basis. These questions can open and change your mind. They allow you to unveil new choices, options, and possibilities you might otherwise have missed.

Here’s the list:

  1. What do I want?

  2. What are my choices?

  3. What assumptions am I making?

  4. What am I responsible for?

  5. How else can I think about this?

  6. What is the other person thinking, feeling, needing, and wanting?

  7. What am I missing or avoiding?

  8. What can I learn?
    …from this person or situation?
    …from this mistake or failure?
    …from this success?

  9. What action steps make the most sense?

  10. What questions should I ask (myself or others?)

  11. How can I turn this into a win-win?

  12. What is possible?

Keep this list in a handy place where you can refer to it whenever you feel stuck, want new alternatives, or a change.

2022 Inquiry Institute

2022 Inquiry Institute