How To Be A Better Problem Solver
Want to learn How To Be A Better Problem Solver? Follow these five helpful lessons for further guidance.
As humans, we are prone to many different unhealthy stimulants during our day. It might be as simple as a wrong coffee at your favourite spot or as major as losing a job. For the majority, we can move on from the moment. However, there are other moments that cannot be let go. Not because it has happened once, but because it has become a pattern.
As Karl Popper, who was a 20th century philosopher of science, once quoted, “All life is problem solving.”
Let us look at some different ways to combat the same outcome over the course of the problem:
Take a break
If you simply can not have a calm discussion with someone, this is the time to get some air. Go to another room, or have a walk outside. By removing yourself from the situation, this allows your brain to process the argument and figure out a different approach. If you know that the person will not back down, simply end the conversation till later.
Engineering professor Barbara Oakley quoted to the Mother Jones newspaper, “When you are focusing, you are blocking your access to the diffuse mode. The diffuse mode, it turns out, is what you often need to be able to solve an exceedingly difficult, new problem.”
Keep a journal
If the problem is more serious, try writing down the issue. Often, our brains have a hard time sorting through the feelings before even tackling the solution. Write down the why, what, when, etc. Add to each subtitle with more sensible ideas. Much like an outline you do for an essay in school. Get it all out on paper first. Then, go back and read each entry. Does it make sense? Does it seem like a better approach to ending the problem?
Author Natalie Goldberg quoted, “Whether you’re keeping a journal or writing as a meditation, it’s the same thing. What’s important is you’re having a relationship with your mind.”
Sleep on it
Some problems can not be solved in one day. By keeping yourself up worrying about it, not only is bad for your physical health but worse for your mental health. The National Institutes of Health estimates that up to 30 percent of the general population complain of sleep disruption. Compound that with an unresolved issue, and now you have not only the task of resolving the matter in question but your own poor health to deal with.
Have a chat
If the problem is not resolved and your feeling overwhelmed, sometimes voicing the problem is therapeutic. Call a friend, family, spouse, etc. Someone that is close to you that has some understanding of your personality.
When we are emotional, it is hard to see our own behaviours. By having a “third-party” hear the problem, it gives us that moment to release that anger or sadness and re-focus on the base of the problem more rationally.
Tackle it head on
This is the moment that your feeling strong enough emotionally to solve the problem. This might look like, talking to the person that you feel has wronged you or getting up everyday to find that new job because you must pay the bills. When we push ourselves to resolve the hurdle that is holding you back, we are rewarded with feelings of satisfaction and less anxiety.
As Albert Einstein eloquently summed it up, “We can not solve our problems with same level of thinking that created them.” By practicing and utilizing these tips will not only assure a more easily solved conclusion, but your mental health will thank you, making everyone feel better. So if you were wondering how to be a better problem solver, hopefully we have given you a few clues!