Effective Problem Solving: How Do People Do It?

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Life isn’t perfect, which means it’s expected that not everything will go the way we want them to. However, just because life throws problems at us doesn’t mean we’re incapable of solving them. When it comes to dealing with life issues, sometimes it just takes knowing effective problem solving methods in order to surpass life’s many complications. How do people do it, though?

According to the Australian Psychological Society, people often find it difficult to solve problems properly because of feelings of panic, which is mostly normal as it’s our natural reaction to situations or events that cause distress. However, sudden feelings of overwhelming fear and panic that happen very often can be a panic disorder, and have to be treated with psychological assistance. If you want to get a head-start into dealing with feelings of distress, however, here are some efficient problem-solving methods:

  • Identify the issues at hand: If you’re looking for tips on how to do effective problem solving, you obviously have a problem you want to resolve. However, try as much as possible to identify the issues in their most concrete form.
  • Try as much as possible to be extremely clear about the problem. Be aware that other people might have different points of view on the issue, but this in itself is an important indicator that something needs to be done to resolve the problem.
  • Try to identify the source of the issue at hand in order to accurately pinpoint what is causing the strain in your life, family, or organisation. This doesn’t necessarily mean putting the blame on someone else, but at least identifying what went wrong and how to avoid it.
  • Understand the kind of outcome people are interested in: This basically means gauging the interests of all the parties involved. This is different from listing the issues at hand and the possible solutions. Rather, this is you identifying which outcomes would be the most “suitable” for others.
  • This is the best time for you to actively listen to your family or to your peers. Listen with the intention to understand, and identify what interests need to be met by the solution you’re looking for.
  • This at least helps identify what kind of emotional strain needs some form of recovery, which is helpful in relationships.
  • Identify the solutions and options you have: This means it’s now time to brainstorm and identify the kinds of solutions you and perhaps your peers have with regards to the problem you’re currently having.
    • Solutions can come in different ways. The trick here is to brainstorm and be creative with your ideas, as sometimes you need to think outside the box in order to provide something everyone can work with.
    • Remember to consider the kind of resources and manpower you have when it comes to solving the particular problem at hand. This works on both personal problems and problems at work, and manpower in this context can mean yourself, family members, or coworkers.
  • Evaluate the options and choose one that you think works: Carefully evaluate all the options you have in order to choose one that works best for you and your particular problem. This means being honest with the various considerations you’re having regarding these solutions:
    • What are the pros and cons of the solutions available? Are they achievable? Are they realistic?
    • What’s the best option if balance is the question?
    • Is there a way to “combine” the ideas to form a “universal” solution? 

Conclusion: Problem solving needs focus, preparation, planning

If there’s anything the above could say about life, it’s that its many problems can be solved through a variety of unique and creative means. Like any math problem, sometimes, life’s woes can be dealt with using efficient problem solving methods – and doing these properly needs focus, preparation, and planning. The article above explores just some of the many ways you can tackle life’s issues with efficient problem solving, and hopefully you’ll be able to conquer life’s woes with the methods we’ve included above. If you feel as though you really can’t move forward with the burdens you’re facing, feel free to give us a call here at Life Resolutions.