How to Improve Your Problem-Solving Skills



Did you know that the average human makes hundreds to thousands of decisions every day? No wonder decision fatigue is a thing. From wondering what to eat for breakfast to deciding if it is time to stop working for the day, our minds are continuously contemplating and making decisions as we progress through our daily lives. 

One way to make quick decisions and avoid fatigue is by improving your problem-solving skills. Identifying a problem and devising ways to solve it is a skill every efficient human should have as it prevents you from lingering on a situation for too long. If you want to improve your problem-solving skill, here are five tips for you.

1. Identify the Problem
Scientists have provided us with a systematic approach to solving problems, often referred to as the problem-solving circle. In this approach, the first step is identifying the problem. Identifying may seem like an obvious approach, but in many cases, people often skip this step or end up identifying the wrong source of the problem. 

You can identify the problem by asking questions. For instance, you notice that you often experience road rage in the morning, ask your self why? It could be a result of stress or the fact that you’re in a hurry to get to a destination. Let’s assume the answer is that you are in a hurry, that’s basically the problem, and now you can concentrate on how to manage your time.

2. Define Your Problem
The next step after identifying your problem is to define it. When defining your problem, make sure you take into consideration your resources as this will influence the feasibility of your solutions.
For instance, while riding on the previous example we used, the problem was that you are always in a hurry. To define this, you should ask your self why using the below exercise as a guide.

Why are you in a hurry? - You woke up late
Why did you wake up late? - You clicked the snooze button
Why did you click the snooze button? - You needed more sleep
Why do you need more sleep? - You went to bed too late.

From the above exercise, we can see that we have been able to nail the main culprit by defining the problem. The solution here would be to find ways to improve your sleep quality so that when your alarm rings, you’ll be energized enough to get out of bed immediately. By doing this, you will, in turn, be more relaxed and less likely to develop road rage as you drive to work.

3. Create a Strategy
Now that you’ve identified and defined the problem, you will need to create a strategic plan. A strategy will provide you with a step-by-step plan on how you can solve your problem. Your strategy should also include evaluation techniques to know if you are making significant progress. Remember to note the lessons you have learned from solving a particular problem as this will help you solve other problems in the future.

4. Engage Your Brain
The brain is the kitchen where all decisions are made, and problems are solved, which is why you must actively seek ways to build it. Games like legos and puzzles that enable children to build and create are useful for developing the brain at a tender age. These games help them think and become problem solvers. What’s more, adults can also benefit from using games to engage their brains. 

These games include; Chess, sudoku, Rubik cubes, and puzzles. You can visit https://www.pennydellpuzzles.com/fill-ins/ for a variety of crosswords, puzzles, and sudoku games suitable for children and adults.

5. Change Your Mindset
The mindset used in approaching a problem can influence your ability to tackle it. If you see a problem as cumbersome, you will most likely associate it with feelings of frustration, and your mind will ultimately want to avoid it.

When faced with a problem, think of it as an opportunity to learn and develop yourself. Don’t dwell on the negative first impressions; instead, imagine the skills and feelings of accomplishment you stand to gain from your ability to resolve such a problem. By doing this, you will be able to approach the problem with more enthusiasm and an open mind.

Also, always ask yourself ‘’What can I do to improve my ability to solve complex problems? Are there certain areas that I should focus on? What strategies have worked for me?’’ Answers to these questions will certainly help to determine how well the problems are solved.





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