The first two things to find out are Feelings and the What (the situation).

Identify and Clarify.


  • Is there any way I’m feeling that I don’t like feeling? OR
  • How am I feeling? OR
  • What would I like to work on? OR
  • How do I feel about that? (IF I’ve stated the problem—the“What”)


  • What am I (un-happy) about? (Always use your own words, i.e. sad, angry etc.)
  • WHAT What about that involves feeling (un-happy)? OR
  • What about that makes me feel (un-happy?) OR
  • What about that is (angry-making, etc.)? Ask “What about that” 3 times
  • What do I mean?
  • What does that mean to me? OR
  • Could I give an example? (If nothing specific is mentioned)
  • Be clear on the WHAT before moving to the WHY.

FEELINGS: Why am I (un-happy) about that?

WHY (Use your exact feeling words)

  • What do I mean?
  • What might I be concerned would happen if I weren’t (un-happy)?

BELIEFS: Do I believe that?

  • Why do I believe that? OR
  • What seems true about that? OR
  • Do I know if that’s true? How do I know it’s true?
  • What might I be concerned would happen if I didn’t believe that? OR
  • Can I think of any way it might be bad for me if that belief were gone?

CLARIFY: Can be asked anytime for clarification.

  • What do I mean?
  • What does that mean to me?
  • Could I give an example?


  • Accept yourself
  • Use your feeling words.
  • Ask questions based on the last thing you said, but follow thread also.
  • Ask respectful questions with sustained, innocent curiosity.

DESIRE: What do I want (instead)? Is there any reason to believe I can’t have that?

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