Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Problem-Solving and the Law of Thinking

Problem-solving is a very valuable skill and, as was once said, no problem can withstand sustained thinking.

Now the Law of Thinking fundamentally states that your predominant thought becomes your reality and this is where people fail when it comes to problem-solving. When faced with a problem, instead of thinking about potential solutions, all some people think about is the problem which simply exacerbates the problem. As Dan Sullivan said:

"The problem is never the problem. The problem is that you don't know how to think about the problem."

And so people often shy away from problems even to the extent that they don't set new goals or attempt new things in their lives because they are afraid of the obstacles they might encounter. However, if you change your perception you will realise that a problem is just an opportunity to grow for in order to solve a problem you have to elevate your thinking.

"You cannot solve a problem from the same consciousness that created it."
Albert Einstein

So how exactly do you raise your level of consciousness for effective problem-solving? There are actually lots of techniques you can use and the following case study will illustrate a few of these.

In January 2009, Captain Chesley Sullenberger safely made an emergency landing on the Hudson River when, moments after the US Airways plane he was flying left New York's LaGuardia airport, experienced double twin engine failure due to a suspected bird strike. Landing a stricken plane of this size safely on a regular runway would have been a challenge. The risks in this situation increased exponentially.

The angle and speed of approach had to be spot on to avoid the plane being destroyed on impact. If this had happened the likelihood of survival would have been slim to none. Yet, this pilot calmly managed to safely land his crippled plane on this runway of water saving the lives of 155 people.

A key factor in what the governor of New York, David Patterson, called "a miracle on the Hudson" was the pilot's experience. Captain Sullenberger has over 29 years' experience as a commercial pilot and is a former US airforce fighter pilot so he was practiced in being able to think calmly under pressure and would have completed many simulations of various emergency situations. However, I'm sure he never imagined he would find himself in such a predicament as he found himself with the ill-fated Airbus 320 where his ability to think clearly when potential disaster loomed around him was taxed to the max.

Another factor in this remarkable story was that once Captain Sullenberger made the decision to land the plane on the Hudson he knew exactly what he had to do to achieve a safe landing. In other words, even though he had to apply laser-like concentration, his thinking became almost automatic because he was following through a logical, sequence of steps that had been thought of before this event.

And Captain Sullenberger had to think fast. His plane was going down and with the rate at which the plane was losing altitude there was insufficient time to return to LaGuardia or make it to another airport. He had to assess the situation quickly and come up with the best solution to the dire problem he was faced with.

So my point is, whether it be your personal life or your business think of things that might go wrong. Now I'm not suggesting that you become morbid about this or even paranoid. It's about being prepared. Think of it as a game.

Once you've identified things that could possibly go wrong you can put into place action plans to counter these situations. Even if you're not in an immediate position to put these plans into action you can schedule them according to their severity. And, should the worst happen before you've implemented your plan at least you will know exactly what to do and you can focus immediately on implementing the solution to whatever problem befalls you rather than worrying about the problem itself.

Worry paralyses you whereas when you're able to take action regarding a problem you immediately feel a sense of relief because now your focus is on the successful resolution of the problem. In other words you're thinking about the solution.

Practice consciously and constructively to apply the Law of Thinking to your problems and your problem-solving skills will develop to such an extent that you'll even start to welcome problems as a means to demonstrate your prowess at problem-solving.

Mastering the Law of Thinking will certainly help you to overcome even the most challenging of problems and help you to consistently achieve success in life but it's just one of many laws. To learn how to master the other critical Universal Laws visit the 11 Forgotten Laws.

No comments:

Post a Comment