What When Where Why and The Who: My Take on The Five W’s and What They Can Do For You

5ws“The Five W’s.”

Also referred to as the Kipling Method, named after English writer and poet Rudyard Kipling.

Often used in journalism, research, and police investigations, as well as, in personal growth and achievement as problem solving pronouns to aid in the evaluation and better understanding of a certain event, subject, or situation.

Whew.

Now, if you’ll notice I have listed The Five W’s out of their customary sequence.

That the Who, which is typically first on the list, is now last.

You might also have noticed that, “The Sixth W”, or, “The One H” (aka the How) appears to be absent.

I say appears because while it does look that way it is not at all the case.

And that’s because in this case the How is The Who.

“What?!”

Perfect, let’s begin with What.

Q&A WITH SOME W’S THROWN IN

So…What is it that excites you? What is it that you just can’t seem to stop thinking and/or daydreaming about? What are you curious about, good at, or wanna be good at?

What is it that you’d like to do, achieve, or accomplish?

What if anything at this point in your life do you regret not doing, and given the opportunity, would jump at the chance to do now?

What’s that one thing you’re willing to fully commit to, sacrifice for, and day in day out relentlessly work at? What? What? What?

Where, more often than not, begs the question, where might you see yourself further on down the road, say in six months, a year, or even five years? 

And while this kind of forward thinking may be useful, wouldn’t the more pertinent question here be, “Where do you need to focus your attention today?” or “Where do you need to concentrate your efforts today?”

Because while peekin down the road is one thing, pullin up your boot straps and walkin down it is a whole other matter.

When,although applicable, better lends itself to journalism and police investigations than to personal growth and achievement.

For example, “When about does this take place?” or, “When exactly was the crime committed?”

No doubt important stuff on both counts, but not so much here, because when it comes to your everyday dreams and aspirations it’s not so much when you make something happen, it’s simply makin damn sure that you do.

And you and I both know that the best time to make something happen…is now.

Hmmm, maybe instead of What, Where and When, it should be What, Here and Now.

Why? It was Robert Kennedy who once famously said, “There are those who look at things as they are, and ask why…I dream of things that never were, and ask why not?

Nice, but I’m kinda partial to this version by George Carlin. “Some people see things that are and ask why? Some people dream of things that never were and ask why not? And some people have to go to work and just don’t have time for all that shit.”

The point is that while asking why can oftentimes prove extremely valuable, even profound, it can equally be viewed as somewhat of an irrelevant question. In the sense that you don’t necessarily need to know why you’re doing something in order to actually do it.

Keepin it simple, here’s why I do some of the things I do.

WHY ME?

Why do I enjoy riding dirt bikes? Because when I open up the throttle and feel those ponies come alive it’s an instant and immediate rush. When that front wheel’s gracefully skimmin over a whoop section at a decent clip or the rear end unexpectedly pitches sideways like the tip of a sapling in a 60 mph windstorm it’s an awesome feeling.

One I don’t plan on giving up until my knees give out.  

Why do I play drums as often as I can? Because there’s nothing quite like gettin in a groove. Okay you knew that one was comin right?

But all kiddin aside it’s a great feeling to plug away at something a little bit every day, improving, progressing, knowing that if you stick with it you might end up not half bad.

It’s a simple task, and in the long run certainly a rewarding one.   

And why after nearly a decade do I keep plugging away at this crazy little thing called Ingzig?

Why when after a long hard day at work it’d be so much easier to just twist open a couple of cold ones do I continue pushin myself, tellin myself, maybe…just maybe.

Well, maybe it’s because we all need something to believe in; something to hold on to, because if you ain’t got that, well, Why bother?

And that brings us to the How, err, The Who.

FOR THOSE ABOUT TO ROCK

Before we continue I’d like to just say, as you may already know, that I don’t much care for idea of talking about “how” to do something.

You see as much as I want you to reach your goals and realize your dreams I simply don’t feel it’s my place to tell you how to go about doin it, in large part because I’m still trying to figure it out myself.

Believe me when I say I’m right there with ya everyday wondering how the &^%# I’m gonna do this or how I’m gonna do that I mean it.

And secondly, contrary to what the experts have to say about it I don’t think there’s a whole lot to say about it.

However, in the information/advice-driven world of personal growth and achievement it is The One H that invariably gets top bill. In fact I’d bet one could safely say that it’s probably been the focal point of virtually every piece of literature ever written on the subject. As well as, the echoing overtone that bellows down from the standing room only rafters at every self-help presentation and conference around the globe.

Why? Because we all wanna know How?

And so it is against my better judgment that I will tell you How. But please, listen very carefully, or ya might just miss it.

The other day I was driving home from work while tuned into 100.3 The Sound, a local classic rock station here in L.A,. When on came a song that I’ve heard probably at least a thousand times. The song was written in 1963 by a Peter Dennis Blandford Townshend and was featured on a 1971 album entitled Who’s Next. The song is Won’t Get Fooled Again; the band…is The Who.

Like I say I can’t tell ya how many times I’ve heard this song before, yet on this day for some offbeat reason there was a particular line in the chorus that curiously caught my ear:

“I pick up my guitar and play, just like yesterday.”

(Pause)

(Ponder)

So, what’d ya think?

Did ya get it?

You didn’t miss it did ya?

Of course you didn’t, you can’t be fooled that easily.

And now, now that you’ve successfully solved this minor little problem; now that you’ve carefully evaluated the situation and have a far better understanding of it—now that you’re about to embark on the journey of a %&$^# lifetime, I leave you with this one kind and encouraging word from Who front man Roger Daltrey.

“YEEEEAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!”

See ya on Aug 1st. Till then, keeep it up.


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