Problem Solving Strategies

Problems are part of every person’s life. They preoccupy our life and make it even harder. What we discussed this week were definitions about problems and how we can deal with them. What we learned more was that we never use any strategy to see and pass the obstacles that reach below our capacity of living our life. Problems arise when we do not know how to act in these situations.

What was summarized in these weeks’ lecture was: Problem solving strategies, as it is quoted in the course pack: Problem-solving is a tool, a skill, and a process. As a tool it helps you solve a problem or achieve a goal. As a skill you can use it repeatedly throughout your life. And, as a process it involves a number of steps. Certainly, the usefulness of these lectures is not discussable. In our life especially after we entered in college we were faced with lots of problems. It is a very valid quote in our culture when they say: as you grow older your problems grow even bigger. What we don’t do is facing these problems and trying to solve them. Instead, we avoid them because we are afraid we may lose or not be able to solve it. The fear that we have is connected to the fact that we do not have the appropriate knowledge.

As a process the problem-solving was explained very well. We learned the six steps, by discussing about them and by the explanation that our professor did. The six steps are:

  1. Problem Definition,
  2. Problem Analysis,
  3. Establish Your Goals,
  4. Generate Possible Solutions,
  5. Analyze The Solution,
  6. Implementation

If we go through all of these steps we have: first really understanding our problem and deciding whether it is a problem or not; then we have the deeper research of our problem; afterward we concentrate ourselves in the goals that we want to achieve so that in the next steps we will be able to categorize our solutions and in the end implementing our solutions. Most of the times person can do that on his/her own, on the other hand it can happen that the person might need a help from a person that can be trustful.

What is interesting is when you are in the position of the person to help. To see how much we understood the lecture, our professor gave us some papers where there were some problems of other people where we were the ones that they turned and asked what to do. I had a woman who was afraid of spider that was more of a phobia. Unfortunately, that started to destroy her life. What I suggested was that she should take a professional help. For instance, she can try to do that with herself or a friend but a professional help would be more successful. Afterward we were the ones to talk about our problems. At first, these problems to me looked very easy and not that life changing. However this turned out to be one of the most wrong things I can ever thing. Every decision that we can or cannot make changes the path of our life. Thus there is no validation in a problem, because problem is a problem.

As discussed above life comes to us with its own “surprises” that can have either good or bad effects. What we really have to do is to take a deep breath and then think clearly. Therefore there is no problem that cannot be solved. As Abraham Maslow have said “If you only have a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.”

Teuta Reçi (student of International Communications)