The 10-Step Process to Solve Any Problem

When you are faced with a problem, how do you go about solving it? Do you let it overwhelm you or do you flex your problem-solving muscles and figure out the best solution?

People who throw themselves at their problems often become frantic and confused. They take a haphazard approach to thinking, and then they are amazed when they find themselves floundering and making no progress.

The 10-Step Creative Problem Solving Process

Here is a 10-step method you can use to think systematically. With this method, you develop your critical thinking and problem solving techniques to genius levels.

1) Change Your Language About the Problem From Negative to Positive

Instead of using the word problem, use the word situation or call it a challenge or an opportunity. The more positive your language is, the more confident and optimistic you will be when approaching any difficulty. The more creative and insightful you will be in identifying creative solutions and breakthrough ideas.

2) Define the Situation or Problem Clearly

What exactly is the challenge you are facing? What is causing you the stress and anxiety? What is causing you to worry? Why are you unhappy? Write it out clearly in detail.

3) Use Critical Thinking to Approach the Problem From Several Different Directions

Ask, “What else is the problem?” Don’t be satisfied with a superficial answer. Look for the root cause of the problem rather than get sidetracked by the symptom. Approach the problem from several different directions. Brainstorm different solutions, because there are likely multiple solutions to the same problem, not just one.

4) Clearly Define the Ideal Solution to the Problem

What exactly must the solution accomplish? What ingredients must the solution contain? What would your ideal solution to this problem look like? Define the parameters clearly.

5) Pick the Best Solution to Solve Your Challenge

Pick the best solution by comparing your various possible solutions against your problem, on the one hand and your ideal solution, on the other. What is the best thing to do at this time under the circumstances?

6) Prepare For the Worst Possible Outcome and How to Overcome it.

Before you implement the decision, ask, “What’s the worst possible thing that can happen if this decision doesn’t work?” If your solution doesn’t work be ready to accept that and try something else.

7) Measure Your Progress

Set measures on your decision. How will you know that you are making progress? How will you measure success? How will you compare the success of this solution against the success of another solution?

8) Take Complete Responsibility for Your Decision

Accept complete responsibility for implementing the decision. Many of the most creative ideas never materialize because no one is specifically assigned the responsibility for carrying out the decision.

9) Set a Deadline for When Things Should Be Solved

A decision without a deadline is a meaningless discussion. If it is a major decision and will take some time to implement, set a series of short-term deadlines and a schedule for reporting.

With the deadlines and sub-deadlines, you will know immediately if you are on track or if you are falling behind. You can then use your creative thinking to alleviate further bottlenecks or choke points.

10) Take action and Solve Your Problem

Get busy. Get going. Develop a sense of urgency. The faster you move in the direction of your clearly defined goals, the more creative you will be. The more energy you will have. The more you will learn. And the faster you will develop your capacity to achieve even more in the future.

You can solve any problem, overcome any obstacle or achieve any goal that you can set for yourself by using your wonderful creative mind and then taking action consistently and persistently until you attain your objective. Success is a mark of a creative thinker, and when you use your ability to think creatively, your success can be unlimited.

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About Brian Tracy — Brian is recognized as the top sales training and personal success authority in the world today. He has authored more than 60 books and has produced more than 500 audio and video learning programs on sales, management, business success and personal development, including worldwide bestseller The Psychology of Achievement. Brian's goal is to help you achieve your personal and business goals faster and easier than you ever imagined. You can follow him on Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedin and Youtube.

  • Maria Isachenko

    My mind stops every time like poor vehicle and it feels like I am Always in danger with it..🙇 And it looks like
    👉😎 or 👉👳 in life😘

  • Maria Isachenko

    Hi, That’s great , Thank you! 👏

  • Waheed Khan

    Great article sir.

  • rambabu

    sir my name is Rambabu, recently i completed my b-tech in ece stream, my mother language is Telugu , i am an Indian,i don’t have fully communication in English language,so i could not get job in software field,so i have been preparing for bank exams, recently i have written a bank exams, but i was failed by 1 and 2 marks, the season for bank exams is gone, it will come in September month, my family very poor, my parents forced me to get job, for that i have been working as Labor, while working i felt very bad that an engineering student doing a stupid thing. that irritation is shown on my friends, so i do not mingle with them, so i am getting fear. so what i have to do?, please suggest me .how can i convince my parents, and friends?. , my carrier is depend on your suggestion

  • Muhd Zaid

    Wonderful article Brian Tracy!
    I personally love this particular post.

    The key word used here is ‘process’

    For those who are trying out this “10 steps process,” give yourself time to adapt. Its a process. A process that will not only solve any of your problems, it will help in your personal development as well.

  • Mark

    thank you so much for this 10 step process!

  • Thank you Brian for this 10 Steps!

    Grüße aus Deutschland 😉


  • dasrath persaud

    Hmm useful tips. I am going to try them out now.
    Thanks for sharing

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