How to Think Critically and Problem Solve
Life is full of complicated situations and those complicated situations create problems that we don’t always
know how to deal with.
Toss into the mix a boat load of emotions that we humans just can’t help but feel and now that problem is
growing and getting out of control and you still have no idea how to begin to deal with it.
So now what do you do?
This is where your problem solving skills need to come into play. Unfortunately many people are lacking the
proper skills in that area making it very difficult to solve said problem.
This article is all about learning how to think critically and problem solve. Below are several different steps
to help you break the problem down and solve whatever problem you are dealing with.
1. Figure out what the problem is – The first step is to figure out if there is a problem.
Sometimes after thinking about it, you may decide that everything was just a misunderstanding. However if after
thinking about it, you do decide there is actually a problem, you need to determine exactly what the problem is
before you can tackle it.
2. Analyze the problem – Now that you know what the problem is you need to look at it,
analyze it by asking some important questions. Is it a simple problem that you can solve by yourself?
Or is it more complex requiring outside help of some kind? If it involves another person can you talk to them to
get their point of view? If not, can you try to see it from their perspective?
3. Solutions – You have been looking at it now from several different angles and different
perspectives. The next step is to come up with some possible solutions. And don’t discount any of them yet, list
them all out on a piece of paper, even ones that seem stupid or silly. Once you have listed every possibility you
can now narrow it down to maybe one or two truly viable options.
4. Pick one – Taking a look at the couple solutions you have narrowed it down to, you need
to think again about what the exact problem is and pick one of your solutions. Play the solution out in your head
and look for possible issues.
And even if there are issues, that does not mean it isn’t the right solution, it may mean you need to tweak it a
bit, or it may mean you will have to deal with the issues as they come up.
5. Take action – Assuming you have decided on a solution you now need to implement it.
Every problem has a solution, even it that solution is, to accept the situation as it is and move forward.
Now that you have the tools to problem solve, you need to practice and your problem solving skills will continue
to get better and it will get easier to deal with issues as they come up. Also, by getting better at thinking
critically and solving problems you will feel better about you.
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