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By Dr. Joel Desaulniers

It is not possible to solve all problems once and for all; however, it is possible to be prepared to deal with problems that reoccur. The purpose of this article is not to give you the false impression that you will never experience anxiety and stress of a problem, but to help you anticipate the recurrent problem and give you a formula to resolve or compromise the issue before it fully engages your stress button. Below are five steps to help you deal with the stress of problem solving:

1) The first step in solving a problem is to identify it. Make sure you are specific in identifying the problem; if not, it will be very difficult to find the correct formula to resolve it.

2) Next, make a list of possible solutions to each problem. You might find possible solutions by consulting people such as; accountants, lawyers, pastors, co-workers, or close friends. In some cases a humorist might be helpful. Write down their opinion on solving the problem, no matter how foolish it may sound. The important thing is writing them down.

3) Now select from this pool of the possible solutions the ones you feel will work. Remember some solutions are better than no solutions.

4) Now that you have a possible solution to your problem, choose one at a time and act out what you think might happen if you put that solution into action – a form of pretend. What would be the possible outcome of your choosing this solution? How would it be perceived? How would it affect others? How would it affect you? Use your imagination to help visualize the possible outcome of this solution.

5) Next, make a decision to use one of your well-thought-out solutions and use it. Don’t procrastinate. Any decision is better then no decision. If the solution works, save it in your computer under problem solving should the same problem reoccur.

I hope using this problem solving technique makes your life a little less stressful.
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