Problem Solving

Every day we face problems, while some are small and unimportant others can be daunting and life altering. Unfortunately, sometimes our problems can seem inescapable as they continue to pile up. But, as is the case in many aspects of life, it is our approach to our problems that can determine our success or failure. There are several steps to help solve a problem. This takes it from being large and unmanageable and breaks it down into smaller pieces that are easier to handle, with less stress and anxiety.

The first step to problem solving is to know what the problem is. This involves us taking a moment to stop and identify the problem. While this step seems obvious, sometimes what we think is our problem can really be a piece of a larger more complex one. So, taking time to think will help to make sure we are solving our real problem.

Next, we need to brainstorm some possible ideas to solve the problem. Typically, about 5 ideas are a good starting point. Keep in mind, at this step, that we are not evaluating the quality of the ideas, but merely writing down possible solutions regardless of how illogical they may seem.

After creating our list, we need to read through it and assess it for viable options to help solve our problem and eliminate any that we don’t think will help.

Finally, we work through our list of possibilities that made “the cut” and try them out. If the first one we try solves the problem- great! If not, we move on to the next one and try again. If we run out of possible solutions before we solve our problem, we need to go back to the brainstorming step and think up some more possible of which could be asking for help.

The earlier in life we learn how to apply these simple techniques of breaking down problems, the better we will become at solving problems that are thrown at us each and every day. 

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