Coach yourself using this problem solving technique

If you find yourself going around circles trying to solve an issue, try this approach.

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Begin by setting yourself up for success by clearing your mind. Take a walk outside, preferably in a green space. Pause and enjoy a few nourishing deep breaths.

Stop and think about a time you successfully deal with a problem. What strengths did you use? Who gave you support? What resources did you tap? How can you use this experience to help you now? Return refreshed to the issue that is troubling you. Now you are better resourced and motivated to deal with it.

Next, find a quiet space where you will be undisturbed. Set a time limit so that you can focus. Then try applying the six stages of this problem-solving process:

1. Write down the issue/problem. Keep going until there is nothing left to write then ask, 'what else?' This question will encourage you to think deeply and stimulate your creativity.

2. Review what you have written. Circle things that are linked so that you can identify patterns.

3. Ask 'what will matter in a year?' Cross out the things that don't meet this challenge. Focus on the things that do.

4. Take the first issue. Ask 'what might be a different way to frame this situation?' Then write down all the possible ways forward. Avoid self-editing. Let it flow.

5. Identify which of the ideas you can begin to implement. Save the other good ideas for later.

6. Commit to begin today with the one idea that you have identified – now act upon it.

Congratulations! You have just taken that first step towards gaining control of the situation. You see, you are more resourceful than you might first think. 

Beverly Landais PCC

Certified Personal & Team Coach: enabling people to be at their resourceful best ,

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