Information is always general until it is customized by a question. Les Brown says, “Information does not change people or everyone who can download from the Internet would be successful”. Information has no value on its own unless it is applied. But we cannot apply information that does not directly relate to us, so we must ask questions. It is in the process of asking questions that we will discover how that information can be adapted to suit our peculiarities.
Asking questions is what bring a body of knowledge to our level of understanding. Here are a few dangers of not asking questions:
- Learning diminishes: a question is usually an inquiry into what we don’t know; hence, the more questions we ask, the more we learn. On the other hand, the fewer questions we ask, the lesser we learn. In a world of rapid knowledge advancement, how can we stay competitive without asking what’s new and what’s next?
- No clarification: clarification is an essential part of our daily lives. We constantly require more clarity on issues we encounter. According to Lemony Snicket, “Assumptions are dangerous things to make … Making assumptions simply means believing things are a certain way with little or no evidence that shows you are correct, and you can see at once how this can lead to terrible trouble”. Abraham H. Maslow also said, “I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.” This means that assumption limits us to the little we know or have, and then we try to fit everything else into our perspectives.
- It reveals our attitude: if asking questions is associated with willingness to learn, then not asking questions may imply contentment with a current level of knowledge. This is not a good attitude to life. We must keep an open mind to learn what we can from others.
- We miss access to people’s minds or secrets: it is amazing how much we can learn from people if only we listen intently and ask the right questions. Imagine you are granted 5 minutes with the most successful person in the world or an icon you have always wanted to meet? What will you do with the 5 minutes? Will you only take a selfie to post on social media page, or will you ask crucial questions that can make you replicate the success?