Friday, January 22, 2010

Tips For Problem Solving

There are many situations, both in our personal and professional life, which throw up problems that need specific attention. Think about it, we solve problems and make decisions everyday at home, at work, at play, even at the grocery store! So, are there any ways of doing it any better than we do already?

Some problems and decisions are very challenging and demand a lot of thought, emotion, and research, while others can be very simple to deal with. But if you keep the following tips that we've put together for you in mind and apply them, you will find it very easy to solve any kind of problem that you are up against.

1. Positive attitude: Begin with a positive attitude. When we are faced with a problem, our typical reaction is to wonder why such a thing has happened to us. Don't waste your time in recriminations and self-pity; accept that there is a problem and look at it as a learning opportunity. Do not be afraid of making mistakes. Sometimes, in order to find the best solution to a given problem, you may have to go through a hundred bad solutions first. The most important thing is to accept that it is OK to make mistakes. How else would you learn otherwise?

2. Open mind: When you are faced with a problem, approach the task with an open mind. Don't assume that there is only one answer and that you already know it. Often, there are multiple solutions to any given problem. Stop for a second and take the time to understand what the problem is truly about before applying a solution. Be open to all possibilities.

3. Global view: Things often look very different when we look at them from a vantage point. Think of it as a "helicopter" view. By looking at the big picture, you might actually be able to understand the problem in its entirety and right context. Once you have done that, you can determine the best course of action.

4. Smaller chunks: If the problem you are facing appears too huge for you to handle all at once, do not fear. Try and break it up into smaller, easily manageable chunks. A problem is like a jigsaw puzzle - when you are confronted with a 1000 pieces, that you have to put together, you can easily feel overwhelmed and give up. But try taking small sections of the puzzle at a time and soon you will have solved the entire problem.

5. Rational thinking: Never approach a problem when you are angry or upset. Emotions or stress can cloud your thinking and judgment. It is best that problems are dealt with logically. Take a step back, calm yourself and think through the problem instead of springing into action when you are all wound up.

Often, working oneself into a frenzy over a problem poses a large hurdle in the way of its resolution. Use your energy thinking about the solutions instead.

1 comment:

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