Like anyone, I have had my fair share of problems. I have had conflict in relationships. I have had competing demands on my time. I have had forks in the road where I have had to choose what to do. I have always weighed up the pros and cons but recently I went over my therapy notes and found in-depth material on problem solving that was invaluable.
I’m embarrassed to say that in recent years I haven’t written my problem solving out however when I went through the steps I realised that I did several of them automatically, I suspect because I learnt them formally in 2009 and am so familiar with them. Nevertheless, since re-reading my notes I have made a commitment to write my problem solving down so as to greater enhance my problem solving process.
The truth is that we all face problems at some point or another but I firmly believe that it is our response to problems that largely determines the quality of our lives, with a calm and logical approach the best by far. Having a thorough methodology to problem solving allows us to feel more in control and enables us to be more logical in making decisions.
Of course, it’s important to remember that there’s no wrong or right – the choices we make simply offer us fresh opportunities to either achieve what we want or provide us with experience that will help us learn how to better achieve what we want in future.
With this in mind, there are just different forks in the road ahead, all of which ultimately lead to greater personal understanding, growth and mastery. That being said, we can use problem solving techniques to make well informed decisions, thus enabling a faster learning curve.
Problem solving can assist us with a vast array of problems that we may face in life. To see if you have faced or are facing issues that problem solving could help with, take a look at the list below which outlines situations that can be problem solved:
- Threatened or actual loss
- Conflicts whereby someone faces a major decision
- Work difficulties
- Study problems
- Coping with boredom
- Dealing with problems related to poor mental or physical health
- Weight control
- Relationship problems (more than likely you will need to use assertiveness techniques – please read ‘Assertiveness: A Journey Worth Taking’ for an in-depth look into assertivness)
Stay tuned – next week we will discover the worry chart – an amazing tool which lets us see in an instant whether our situation can be problem solved.
What steps have you taken to problem solve in the past? Do you have a tried and true process? Please share your thoughts in the comments below to gain encouragement, support and insight from our community, we’d love to hear from you.
- Write down any problems that you would like to work through during this series.
- Write down any attempts at problem solving the problems on your list that you have made and note what approaches didn’t work.