Problems are a matter of interpretation. Steady rain for a farmer may be a welcome sight, but it can make an evening at the ballpark miserable. The rain is not the problem. It’s how the rain is interpreted. What’s happening in your life is not nearly as important as how you interpret what’s happening.
Something is always happening. We can’t go through a day without something happening. We have to learn, and it is a lifelong learning process, to use our x-ray vision to see through the challenges of our immediate experiences so we can discover the positive potential outcomes that ultimately will emerge. The faster we learn this drill, the sooner we will make our dreams come true.
The question then is not whether or not we will have problems, but rather how we choose to think about them. When we harness the power of our problems with an equally powerful strategy to deal with them, we will neutralize their effect and minimize the consequences they might have had in our lives.
Here are five questions I’ve asked myself over the years that have helped me manage my problems. They have empowered me to become my best in the midst of conflict, disappointment, and even despair:
1. If this is the first time I have encountered this problem, what can I do now so that I don’t encounter it again?
2. If I have faced this problem more than once, why does it continue, and what must happen now to avoid its recurrence?
3. What good is there in this problem that will create growth and advancement for me as I deal with it?
4. How can I build up my resistance during the time it takes to fix the problem?
5. How can I change my perspective so my problem impacts me more positively?