The information we need to make choices is frequently unavailable, insufficient, or contradictory. Sometimes, we cannot even figure out what kind of details we are missing to make a picture understandable. New ideas are built on previous knowledge, which to a certain extent, has been randomly acquired.
Luckily, when solutions require complex reasoning, there are ways to shorten the process of analysing alternatives. Using our subconscious is a surprisingly reliable method to come up with correct answers. On many occasions, the conclusions we reach, will involve a new formulation of the initial questions.
The subconscious mind is specially well suited to assess situations where many elements play a role with connections on several levels. How can we make optimal use of this approach to solve problems? These are the four steps you can take to exploit this capacity to your advantage:
- FORMULATE LONG-TERM OBJECTIVES. Without a clear sense of direction, no one can make consistent choices. Long-term objectives allow man to minimize the impact of daily adversities and counter misfortune with rational action. The time you devote to defining your principal goals can be your best investment.
- PLACE PROBLEMS IN PERSPECTIVE. Few situations are really life-threatening. Exaggerating the seriousness of difficulties does not improve our ability to deal with them. Events should not be given more relevance than they deserve. Let your fundamental goals, not your feelings, determine the importance of present concerns.
- IDENTIFY THE DRIVING FACTORS. When dealing with trouble in unfamiliar areas, we might not even be aware of which aspects we need to consider. Each situation is driven by different elements and no man has universal expertise. Asking questions, visiting the public library, or consulting the internet will allow you, more often than not, to figure out what is crucial in the business at hand.
- LET INFORMATION SINK IN. Take your time before making major decisions. Make a list of the factors that you have discovered in your initial research. Read what you can on related subjects and let your mind organize the information. Make notes and let them lead you to new details.
Your most valuable achievement is that you have acquired a new thinking routine. Over time, this method for surmounting obstacles can render you tremendous service. Use it to minimize annoyance from adversities and let it further your progress towards your chosen goals.
[Image by Shayan (USA) under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/]