“Happiness is not the absence of problems, but the ability to deal with them”
Charles De Montesquieu
What is the secret ingredient of the achievers that makes them successful? How do they survive in the same set of problematic circumstances while others surrender? And eventually …. How do they win when others lose?
Problems Are Signs of Life
Successful people understand and accept that problems are signs of life. They believe that life can’t be without problems. Problems are signs of life because as long as life will be there so long problems will be there.
Close your eyes and think for a moment – Does a dead man has any problems in life? ….NO! Visit a nearby crematorium, stand with folded hands, and think – Do they have any problems? …. NO! We should be grateful enough because you and I are alive so we need to deal with problems. Remember, Problems are signs of life.
Achievers are believers that life cannot be without problems, but it is all about defeating or overcoming the problems.
Does Everyone Have Problems ?
The answer is yes. Each one of us has some sorts of problems in life. The degree, depth, or acrimonious effects of problems may differ. But, it exists with everybody. You manage one, the other one appears, you solve that, then another one surfaces, again you need to handle that.
Everyone has a problem in life, even others problems may be more intense than your problems.
But, we always tend to blame our missing and never appreciate our blessings and happiness.
One day many friends were chatting around a round table. All were bogged down with some kinds of problems with their own. Each one of them had a perception that his problem was the most intense. Other problems were not as intense as his problems. He was so unlucky and the biggest sufferer. So, on a piece of paper, they wrote their individual problems, folded them, mixed them all, and exchanged the folded piece of paper among themselves.
After a while, everyone silently took back their own piece of paper and left the round table!
Remember – “Success is the ability to solve problems” Brian Tracy
Read books by Brian Tracy. Check Price on Amazon
Why Problem Solving is a critical skill?
Problem-solving requires creative, analytical, and cognitive skills. It is a learnable skill. Strong problem-solving skill is a part of conflict management. Problem-solving skills make a huge difference in your personal as well as in your professional career.
Problem-solving skills build up your decision-making capability, make you more creative, thoughtful, and confident. Effective problem solving adds value to your career pathways. It encompasses a wide range of abilities like imagination, determinations, design thinking, and resilience.
Problems are natural, normal, and inevitable in our life. Problems may have some merits of their own.
History time and again showed us that a polio-affected person can convert his physical problems to a winning habit or a stammering candidate can be a super salesperson in his organization. It is all about your growth mindset and how you turn your problems into opportunities.
Time-tested steps to improve your problem-solving skills –
- Define the Problem – You need to define or identify the problem first. Do not do it apparently but find out the exact nature of the problem. When you define the problem in a proper way it saves time, money, and energy and finally leads to a solution.
“ Take away the cause, and the effect ceases” – Miguel De Cervantes, The greatest writer in the Spanish language
- Ask Questions – Once you have clearly defined the problem ask yourself some empowering questions. Ask yourself – Why did this problem happen? What can I do? What can I ask for? Can I read something to get an idea? Remember – sometimes the right questions are the right answers.
Read a book on ‘The power of asking right questions’ – Check price on Amazon
“ The important thing is not to stop questioning” – Albert Einstein
Keep digging till you find out the root cause. Follow the ‘Fish Bone Method’.
Fish Bone Method – It is a process of tracking the root cause of the problem. Imagine the skeleton of a fish. The main bone or spinal cord being the main problems and the spines may be the possible causes.
- Prepare a List of Possible Solutions –
“Life is 10 % what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.” – Louis Leo Holtz
Start thought storming. Take a pen and a notepad and write down all possible solutions. Do not miss out even a trivial point. Do not even miss out however foolish an option it may sound.
Remember, maybe there is someone who has spent numerous years identifying, studying, understanding, and giving ideas to a problem quite similar to yours. That problem-solving idea may be there in a magazine, journals or books. If required, go to a library or search online about look-alike problems.
- Make a Decision – The motivational speaker, author, and coach Tony Robbins said that “ Never spend more than 10% of your time on the problems and spend at least 90% of your time on the solutions”.
So, make a decision based on your list of probable solutions. Taking a decision and start acting on it is much better than making a no-decision.
- Develop Learnability habits and Practice brain Gym –
As probably by this time you have comprehended that problems are part of life. Once managed or sorted out, wait for the next one. So, ‘prepare and prevent than to ‘repair and repent’ should be a guiding action plan.
I suggest keeping your mind open to learn something new, try to improve yourself on something you choose, something you love or you are passionate about. It will keep your cerebral hemisphere active and there will be enough biochemical flow.
Michael Merzenick, a neuroscientist, University of California in his beautiful speech said “ our brains are indeed PLASTIC, they can grow, develop and change itself with proper nourishment, training, and exercise.”
Final Remarks – Stress and happiness do not come from a situation but from how we respond to such situations. In our life problems are natural, normal, and inevitable. They never end. They only vary in size, shape, and in effects. In the beautiful journey called ‘life’, you come across any problems look at the problem from a different perspective. Look at it as a learning opportunity. Problems are like friction and fire. Remember “Diamonds can’t glow without friction and gold can’t glitter without fire”.
So, now on…will you treat your problems as frictions and fire to radiate you out with colorful and glittering impacts?