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Insights / August 17, 2015

Question Everything

By Abby Breyer

Kids are inherently curious. Around three years old, every kid goes through a “why” phase — a couple weeks or months where every single thing anyone tells them is met with “WHY?”

They don’t care about the facts before them. They want to know the motivation, the rationale, the science behind the facts.

Why did we all stop asking “why?”

So much of what we know as adults has been presented to us by someone with more knowledge than we (think we) have: our parents, teachers, mentors, bosses, clients — they tell us, with the very best of intentions, what they believe we need to know. The rules for living, rules for working. There’s room for curiosity and exploration in the application of these rules, sure. But how much more would we learn if we met every piece of information presented to us with the question “why?”

Why does this work like this?
Why can’t I do that?
Why do you feel that way?
Why did we choose this solution?
Why isn’t that an option?
Why haven’t we considered this?

This week, question everything. Don’t just accept what’s presented to you as fact. Dig deeper. Explore. Unearth the whys and hows and what could bes. Open your mind. Feed your curiosity. Look for (and ask for) more than what you’re given. And challenge the people around you to do the same. Because the solutions we develop are only as good as the knowledge behind them.