How To Ask Good Discussion Questions

Have you ever felt stuck when running a discussion session? Like you just don’t have the right questions to ask your group? It all starts with setting the correct atmosphere. When you’ve managed to develop a safe space for your life group members you will be able to ask any question no matter how uncomfortable it might feel to answer them. Listed below are three helpful tips on how to ask good discussion questions.   

TIP #1 DIFFERENT TYPES OF QUESTIONS

There are three different types of questions closed questions, limited questions, and open questions. Closed questions are the “yes” or “no” questions where when you ask your group something they can only respond with one or the other. For example: you ask “does everyone here read the bible daily?” they can only respond with a yes or no. Limited questions are questions that have limited correct answers. For example: you are reading the bible with your members and you ask “What does joy really look like in someone’s life?” there are only so many responses they can give you that are correct.  Open questions are questions that promote open discussion. They are the kinds of questions that make people think deeply about their response. Example: you ask “what does your relationship with God look like right now?” Always try to have a mixture of these different types of questions within your meetings. It promotes a great balance and helps ease into the deep conversations you are aspiring to have.

TIP #2 LEAD THE CONVERSATION

As the leader of your lifegroup you have to be the person who is going before everyone else in order to establish space for conversation to flow. This starts with the kinds of questions you ask and also the way you respond to your members answers. Always show them that you are interested and want to listen to their answers. Don’t drift off into space when people start talking, instead engage with them. Lead the conversation by asking the questions, listening, and then engaging with them. Don’t just let the conversation die, be prepared to continue the conversation until it's time to move on.

TIP #3 BE TRANSPARENT

In order to set the tone of how open your life group will be it has to start with you first. You must be the most transparent one in your group in order to make the members feel comfortable. When you are preparing for your meeting make sure you ask yourself the heart level questions you want to ask your members. Always be the first one to answer the questions in order to allow your members the opportunity to get to know you and to feel like they are in a place where transparency is normal. Remember that not everyone will be willing to answer but as long as you make transparency a priority little by little people will begin to open up.

Bernard Agyakwa