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I am rarely able to do this. This is a good reminder for me. When I can do this, other options seem to appear. A third or fourth possibility becomes available. I become less stuck.
Curiosity then opens the door to the solution that works for the whole.
I struggle with this right now. I feel a lot of pressure to address problems and be result oriented. I am so very tired and came here for some rest.
I was not able to relate to this question easily. However, several responses helped me, especially Carol’s “renaming a problem as a challenge.”
Some “opportunities” come with tight schedules and hard deadlines that don’t tolerate the leisure of navel gazing, introspection, or a whole lot of curiosity. But I am one for running experiments, lots and lots of experiments, mostly with a reasonable expectation of certain outcomes. I wouldn’t say that I’m friends with failure, only that it is a constant and reliable partner in my successes, however hard fought and won.
I have read somewhere that there is no such thing as a problem – just opportunities. Some days though, I feel, like enough with the opportunities already. Sometimes it is a bit like the twelve days of Christmas poem. Six out of the first seven days your true love gives you birds – 23 in total. On day five it is golden rings; phew we are finally done with all the birds. Then bam, six geese.
I don’t know what to make of this question. I’ll say that when I let go of idea of problems and let go of things I think that usually opens up to more space and possibilities.
Approaching a situation with true curiosity allows a perception in loving-kindness in widened perspective and observing freely what might appear, while problem solving in a way narrows my view with will-involved determination. So the range of what is perceived I guess is much wider when curious, included a possible “fun-factor” for surprise also. It is more what is meant to be than what “I” want it to be. Thank you for this interesting question, opening up more to creativity also.
This question assumes a binary in opposition, which is something I’m on the lookout for these days because it boxes us into a very constrained view of the world and the possibilities. Who’s to say my problem-solving mode isn’t already rooted in true curiosity? I generally refer to things as challenges rather than problems, and I like Carol’s use of “situation”. If my work team has a situation or challenge I ask for ideas, ask questions to draw out some of the implications or potential unintended consequences or precedents established, ask questions to determine whether it’s even really the problem they think it is or something we can let go of or redefine, we winnow and refine. If that’s problem-solving mode I think I’ll keep it.
I refuse to turn a situation into a problem. Once you label something as a problem, you’ve lost an opportunity for growth. I just ask myself what I can learn from the situation and I pray for wisdom.
“Don’t turn a situation into a problem.” That piece of wisdom has stayed with me and helped me many times since I first saw it in one of your posts. Many thanks. 🙏🏻
Laura, Eckhart Tolle’s book “A New Earth” helped me to understand the importance of and the difference between a situation and a problem. One of his favorite terms is your “life situation.” I think you would enjoy that book. It helped to change my perspective on life and especially my own life.
peaceful and connected
True curiosity lets one absorb and take in. Answers to any problems can come later I suppose.
I’m so excited, I just saw a hummingbird in my backyard, brought me so much joy:)
A book to consider: A Hummingbird in My House The Story of Squeak
I am often intense, quick to fire up! Red head, Irish, and I often react instead of think. Today’s question and the reflections of others has given me pause. Today, I will try very hard to be mindful of my words and reactions…to listen first…maybe that is all that is needed is a quiet ear to listen. My house is quiet…my husband, me ..and our family of a dog, and two cats…So…it should be a grateful day. Once again..I am grateful for this site and all of you here.
May allow for a better opportunity to listen more and possibly a time to learn more before reacting
My ego is removed from the equation. Any needed resolution then has a chance to occur more naturally rather being forced on the situation.
I learn love and acceptance for all that occurs in my life. And by doing so I suffer less and and love more and feel gratitude
I am more observant. It gives me an opportunity to think before I act or speak.
When listening to my wife, daughter and/or my son after one or the other has had a particularly difficult day, I have slowly been learning (I am a remedial learner) to leave the problem solving realm and just listen with all the awareness I can muster. Non judgmental, non partisan and I suppose as the question asks “with true curiosity”. If I am asked for advice I will share but if not just let them “vent”. Sometimes that is enough to give them solace they seek in the present moment.
You are helping them feel heard and that is a gift and blessing to them.
Happy Sunday Joseph,
I am also a remedial learner. I has this same conversation with my daughter yesterday. She was struggling and I asked herhow I could help. She told me she doesn’t need me to solve the problem, just to listen. I supposed it;s why God gave me two ears and 1 mouth. You post was spot on for me today. Thanks for sharing.
I relax and so feel more energised, allowing the mental space for more creative solutions. I actually enjoy the challenge of solving priblems.
The situation becomes a journey of wonder and adventure.
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