Five principles to follow for problem solving

Do you know someone who just seems to sail through life no matter what gets chucked at them? They are great to be around and they're utterly dependable. You like and respect them, and they always follow through on what they say they're going to do. If you've got a problem, they'll help you find a solution. They're confident. They excel at excelling.


They have an Internal Sense of Control. That's why they are how they are. They don't believe in luck or fate. They believe in themselves. 


How can you get some of that?


Employ these five principles to your problem solving and you'll be well on your way:


1. Take responsibility. Look back over your behaviour and ask yourself what worked well and what didn't work so well. Then learn from both.

2. Be persistent. Solving problems and meeting challenges requires persistent effort. Believe that your personal actions are linked with personal outcomes. 

3. Trust that rewards for your effective behaviours will come. Luck or fate won't determine your rewards, your behaviours will. 

4. Gather information. Learn, learn, learn. Solving problems requires information. 

5. Avoid pressure from others. Change your mind when presented with dependable and persuasive facts and material, not persuasive "powerful" others. 


The above are referred to as "the big five" behaviours that individuals with an Internal Sense of Control deploy. Each one is like a piston driving them forward to find the best solutions to their problems. 


The above has been adapted from Stephen Nowicki's excellent book called Choice or Chance.