Got a Huge Problem? Attempt Solving Your Puzzle Differently

A colleague from Liberia’s Ministry of Youth and Sports where I consult on Leadership development came to me explaining some serious problems. I wouldn’t go into the details of the issue but his approach to attempting to solve the problem is  what prompted me to doing this article.

Let’s face it, we all face difficult situations, challenges and obstacles  from time to time. The beauty is that sometimes these problems seem insurmountable when in reality, there’s almost always a solution.

The reason some problems seem insurmountable is  they way people see those problems.  The reality is, if you start to look at your problems and challenges differently, you tend to find solutions from rather unlikely places.

When you can’t figure out the solution to a problem, try taking  a different approach. It’s like trying to solve a Solve problems differentlypuzzle. Sometimes it’s easy to start from the top, other times, the bottom and yet other times you start from what ever piece you have in your hand.

When you look at the problem from a different perspective, you find the that the solution becomes more obvious instead of looking  impossible.

No matter how tricky a problem may seem, you can find a solution.

Employ Creative Problem Solving 

Creative problem solving techniques are valuable skills, and encourage you cultivate them.  When you are objective in your creativity, it can lead to the kind of innovative solutions that allow you to overcome obstacles and find the best possible solutions to even the stickiest of situations.

Some of the best solutions are the simplest ones and all it takes to find the solution is to gain a fresh perspective.

So when shit hits the fan, here are a few things you can you the get things moving smoothly again.

  1. Take a break. When you start over thinking a problem for a long period of time, you do more harm than good.  Take a little time away form the issue and return to it; it will do wonders for your perspective!  Take a nap, walk or just think about something entirely different  for a short time before returning to the problem at hand.
  1. Get an outside perspective. As the saying goes, two heads are often better than one. That’s why it will be important to bring together a few trusted friends or family members and explain the problem you’re trying to solve – when you bring in fresh input from people less familiar with the problem, they tend to give objective views which can be worth a lot. Brainstorm together and have everyone share their different solutions.  While this method can be very helpful, don’t rely on other people to always solve your problems. It’s best to approach friends or coworkers after you’ve brainstormed a few solutions yourself.
  1. Get it on paper. This is powerful.  Try to write everything down about the situation. Having charts or lists has been proven to help clarify the problem and its solution.  Your time spent worrying about a problem will decrease significantly when you can physically make changes to your chart and see your solution.
  1. Break a large problem into smaller parts.  As I mentioned earlier, many times,  what appears to be a huge problem is really a series of smaller challenges. if you Identify each challenge and work on solving each one separately, you get the whole thing solved. Let’s say for example you just lost your job. That could be a huge problem if you have rent or mortgage to pay, family to provide for, as well as other responsibilities like insurance etc.Rather than looking at the who income that you’ve lost and trying to replace it right away, you could break things down by first trying to cut out things like cable or satellite TV,  and then finding a way to make some extra money like beginning to offer your services as a freelance consultant.
  1. There’s more than one solution to every problem. Don’t limit yourself to just thinking of one solution. Brainstorm as many solutions as possible, even if they sound crazy or outlandish, and then go back to evaluate which solutions might work. Whatever possible solution comes to mind, write it down and then later you can evaluate them one by one.

Overcoming challenges in life does not happen overnight. It involves having the right insights and perspectives. And giving things a fresh look is always one of the very best things you can do. I hope these tips have provided some help to you.

Be patient and try not to get frustrated at the process. Some problems are more difficult than others and will take more time to solve. But rest assured there is an answer!

If you you need a more strategic plan on to help you deal with your challenge, I encourage you to join my Optimal Impact MastermindThis a closed group of people committed to helping each other overcome challenges and achiever their dreams and goal in life and business.




  1. Neil February 9, 2016
    • Dan Maxwell Jr February 9, 2016
  2. Joon April 21, 2016
    • Dan Maxwell Jr April 21, 2016

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