Problem Framing & Reframing
#235 How Does This Qualify as a Problem?

Does This Affect Me? Do I Need to Do Something?

From experience it has become apparent that we often see problems as objective hard things. They are not. They are constructs. What may be a problem for one person may be a windfall for another. I therefore find that rather than start from the position of seeing the world through problems, it helps to reverse the burden of proof:

  • There is no problem.
  • There may be a problem, but I can’t do anything about it.
  • There is a problem, and I may be able to do something about it.

This eliminates most “problems” and allows me to focus on the ones that both affect me and are somehow within my control.

  1. Can this situation be ignored?
  2. If not, how exactly does it affect me (us)?
  3. What might a resolution look like?
  4. What options do I (we) have?
  5. Who or what might be able to help?
  6. What is the next step?

Want to explore this further? Then check out Problem Framing and Reframing.

Questions in the Image:

  • How does this qualify as a problem?
  • Does it affect me?
  • Do I need to do something?

Want to Read More Around This Topic?

Problem Framing and Reframing provides a comprehensive overview of the above six question framework.

Nurturing Curiosity – Daily Practice: This is part of the Nurturing Curiosity series of tools, insights and questions designed to help nurture curiosity as part of our daily practice. In point of fact, every interaction we have is an opportunity to question what we are observing and how we and others are seeing the world. Also remember that questions come in many forms throughout our day. As my kids prepared for school this morning it felt like chaos reigned and yet all was good in the world. I wondered: Where might I benefit from some chaos in my work? Something unexpected that challenges what I do and how I do it.

About Tom O’Leary

I coach, mentor and teach leaders who are shaping a brighter future.

Leadership can be lonely, the challenges daunting, and the workload overwhelming. I help leaders feel heard, gain clarity, take action, build confidence and thrive! Leaders matter. Their work matters. We need them at their best!

The first step? Becoming more curious. I see curiosity as the key, allowing us to unlock deep insights that directly enhance our ability to think, act and lead.

This means spending time contemplating what might be possible so that when we take action, we can bring all our energy and power to bear.

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