16 Questions to Ask Yourself Today

One of the perks of having a progressive disease is that I retired from conventional work at 40 years young.

Now, with time on my side, I’ve been gifted opportunities to converse longer with: writers, teachers, librarians, dog trainers, insurance agents, car salespeople, lawyers, dentists, physical therapists, police officers, baristas, deli technicians, barbers, former students, fellow retirees, active drug addicts, recovering drug addicts, people with progressive brain disorders, strangers snarled in the post office line, and Amazon delivery people.

Some of these interactions have produced compelling questions. Questions, when removed from the context of the conversation, are theses for philosophical discussions with university professors or late-night-staring-at-your-ceiling-listening-to-your-spouse-snore conversations with yourself.

In my suburban quest to answer, “Does adversity build character?” I’ve learned that asking adversity questions is an essential step for building character.

However, before adversity can build character, asking it questions is elemental. Questions are not only fundamental for learning, they’re fundamental for building relationships.

And like it or not, we are in a relationship with it.

As in any relationship, we have to attend to it. Listen to it. Pay attention to it. Building a healthy relationship with it is essential for becoming a better version of ourselves.

And so, sometimes the smartest and bravest thing you can do is ask yourself a question, listen to the silence, and just wait, however long, until you discover the answer.

For example:

1.What little things can I do today, and tomorrow, to positively deal with it?

2.What can I do today, and tomorrow, to feel emotionally and physically stronger?

3.Do I love myself enough to forgive myself?

4.Who do I admire? Why?

5.Who don’t I admire? Why?

6.What do I need to accept right now?

7.If a person I love was dealing with it, what advice would I give him or her?

8.Does feeling sorry for myself make me feel good?

9.Am I doing my best?

10.Am I making myself proud?

11.What is it asking of me?

12.What am I grateful for?

13.What healthy habit could I begin today and continue tomorrow?

14.If I can be kind to others, why is it so hard to be kind to myself?

15.What feelings or attitudes about it do I need to let go of right now? 

16.What is it trying to teach me?

Be well,


Greetings to everyone who found me on the University of Pennsylvania’s Ataxia Clinic’s website! Thanks for stopping by. I have ataxia and though I’m not a doctor, I hope my words comfort, encourage, empower, and serve as good company on your journey.

Arriving 11/1/23!

Ordinary Hero: The Power of Building Character One Step at a Time

August Book Promos for You:

Are looking for inspiration? Are you searching for a better version of yourself?

This month I joined literary forces with some best-selling authors in two awesome book promotions. Click the link below:

NEW: Hot Summer Self-Help 

NEW: Memoirs, Biographies, Self-Help Books and More!

Buy Here!

Recent letters you may enjoy:

25 Things to Remember When Life Get Hard: Part 2

Life is Change

Adversity Also Builds This


Jay Armstrong is a speaker and an award-winning author. Despite being diagnosed with a rare neurological disease, that impairs his movement, balance, eyesight, and speech–Jay presses on. The leader of the Philadelphia Ataxia Support Group, he hopes to help you find joy, peace, and meaning in life.

For Jay, a good day consists of 5 things:

1. Reading
2. Writing 
3. Exercising
4. Hearing his three children laugh
5. Hugging his wife
(Bonus points for a dinner with his parents or a drink with his friends)

Jay hasn’t had a bad day in quite a long time. 

You can also visit Jay at jayarmstrongwrites.com

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