Creative Problem Solving for the Everyday Guy

“The measure of success is not whether you have a tough problem to deal with, but whether it is the same problem you had last year.” John Foster Dulles

Of course, the adult world is far more complicated. Variables make problem solving more difficult. But while it’s not easy to find solutions, too many lose that child-like quality to use maximum creativity for solving problems.

While it’s necessary to be practical when it comes to work and home life, you should develop the necessary skills of creative imagination to solve problems. A little use of those mental skills can create an environment of success and achievement and elevate you in the ranks of the company you work for.

Take Time to Think. A hurried life doesn’t provide much time to think through problems. The tendency is to make snap judgments before the facts are considered. Mistakes occur too frequently. Too often those mistakes force you to rework the problem. That leads to lost time and productivity. Many problems can’t be solved through quick fixes even though the solution is a simple one at times. To find a solution you need to devote quiet time to look at all the angles before making any conclusions. Sit down and write out the problem, even those that appear to be unworkable.

Narrow Down the Workable Solutions. Given the facts available, you can then whittle down those solutions that have the most promise. At this point you can start writing down the time it might take to accomplish the best of them. Consider the costs involved and any hurdles that may need to be overcome before the problem can be resolved. You may need more facts or further enhance your education.

Seek Out Help. Few problems can be solved without help. You need to know who can help you in reaching your goal. In the working environment that can mean turning to your fellow employees, your immediate supervisor or upper management.  For example, if you find your bills overwhelming, you will need to call your creditors to work out new arrangements to pay off your debt.

Get Active. Procrastination kills desire. Once you have settled on one or two possible solutions, you need to act. You must set aside the fear of possible failure. Nothing is certain in this life and every solution has an equal chance of success or failure. But if you’ve done the preliminary work, you will increase your chances for success. Once you set on your course of action, there’s no looking back or regret about the decision you made. Stick with your plan until you’ve accomplished your goal. And if you do fail, learn from the mistake. It will help you make better decisions in the future.

Stay Positive. Don’t let doubts and fear creep in. You should expect positive results from your decision. It’s likely that you’ll meet your goal though it may take several course corrections. It’s a part of life that you need to be attentive to what you are doing. You can’t expect your car to get you to work without steering it in the right direction. Those who stay positive and upbeat become the leaders in their community, family and business.

Problem solving doesn’t have to be complicated. It does require some thoughtfulness and application. Life is filled with problems that demand solutions. If you know how to meet those problems, you will be far richer and happier from using your creative imagination.

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