TOR 048: A Few Simple Hacks To Develop A Taste for Having Problems
Here’s the latest edition of The Optimized Report newsletter, a collection of actionable ideas to help small business teams improve their performance, profit, and potential without sacrificing what’s most important.
“A life devoid of problems would contain nothing worth doing, and would therefore be meaningless,” writes Luke Burgis.
The same is true for business. Your business is a series of challenges that you must deal with. Depending on its size and scope, the problems vary but rest assured, every business has a problem.
But regardless of the emotions that boil up when you’re presented with an obstacle, problems are always an opportunity to learn, get better, and push through the status quo.
Yet, we LOVE to put negative labels on problems.
“There’s always a problem.”
“Can’t anything go right!”
But that’s how life is, a series of problems for you to conquer.
Here are a few ways to develop a taste for problems:
Give up the unrealistic goal of eradicating problems.
Once you break free from this thinking, you can develop an appreciation for realizing that life is about engaging with a series of problems, each deserving the time they require.
“The presence of problems in your life, in other words, isn’t an impediment to a meaningful existence but the very substance of one.”
Redefine what a problem is.
Problems are a figment of the future or brought by living in the past.
Most problems aren’t problems at all, which is why we must redefine what a problem is. Instead, they are a situation that has occurred in the past that needs to be resolved in the future.
They’re a temporary challenge.
A challenge is a situation that tests your ability. You can accept the challenge or let it be.
Problems are lingering. They feel impossible. They’re intrusive.
Challenges are acceptable.
One of the best ways to deal with a challenge is to focus on what you can do right now.
Don’t get caught up with what happened in the past or what the future holds. Instead, focus on what you can do right now, in this moment.
Ask yourself better questions.
Every great answer starts with a great question.
If you’re not asking yourself the right questions, or no questions at all, you have no chance of positively solving the problem.
Here are a few questions to start with:
- What are some quick, easy to execute solutions to this problem?
- What would be the options to solve this problem if I had no budget? What if I couldn’t spend any money? How would I then go about it?
- How can we reduce our downside?
- What am I not seeing?
- What is the lowest hanging fruit to solving this problem?
The key is to stop labeling problems as impossible and a life nuisance.
They are life, so learn to accept and solve them.
- Give up the unrealistic goal of eradicating problems.
- Redefine what a problem is; call it a temporary challenge.
- Ask yourself better questions to solve your biggest challenges.
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