Perspective: Your Life Story Must Answer These Questions

Jan 25, 2019

My life has revolved around journalism … newspapers. 

Which means I’ve devoted a lot of time to asking questions. 

 

I learned many years ago that every news story is built on a foundation of five W’s and the H. 

 
Who? 

What? 

When? 

Where? 

Why? 

… and How? 

 

You must answer all these questions to complete a story. Now, I’ve been thinking about those questions lately.  In terms of the story I’m still writing -- about myself. 

 

This started when I read one of those how-to-make-your-life-better articles by Thomas Oppong. He says I need a personal philosophy, an overall vision or attitude toward life and its purpose. 


 

I find myself babbling a little when I try to put my philosophy into words. But Oppong shared something that helps me focus. He quotes Viktor E. Frankl, a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp, from his book, "Man’s Search for Meaning.”  

 
Frankl said: “Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how.’” Which means, I guess, I should be searching for my “why?” Yes, it’s important and often the most compelling question in any story.  

 

But I don’t see my “why?” etched in stone. 

 

Unless it’s this simple truth: That my philosophy of life has and will continue to evolve and will always be built on the 5 W’s and the H. Not just the “why?” 

 

Because life bumps into all those questions. Every day. And like I said, no story — especially a life story — is complete without answering each one. 

 

Every day. As best you can. Until your story is done. 

  

I’m Lonny Cain … and that’s my Perspective.