Seek Creative Solutions
Seven Characteristics of Unstoppable People
Part 6 in a Seven-Part Series
Based on the book Unstoppable by Cynthia Kersey
In the movie Apollo Thirteen the three astronauts are forced to gather into the lunar landing craft for most of their journey back to earth once the mission was declared aborted. Facing multiple crises, one of their more creative moments came when they were on the verge of putting back into their space craft more poisonous carbon dioxide than their current filtration system could handle.
The creative solution was that they had to fashion an air filter out of the available materials at hand, which included duct tape, the cover from a flight manual, plastic, a hose from a space suite and a few other odds and ends found within arm’s reach.
What they ended up creating was less than adorable. It was crude and ugly, but it did the trick by filtered their expelled air and gave them a fighting chance to get back to earth safely.
It’s called creative problem solving. Most of us perform this every day of our lives in some form or fashion.
Problems crop up out of the blue in the course of our everyday lives and often it is up to our abilities to perform the seemingly heroic and unusual that makes it a matter of life and death.
Unstoppable people down through the ages have mastered the art of creative problem solving. There are a hundred ways to find creative solutions.
Here are just a few ideas that have become favorites for many people.
Think outside the box: Avoid the tried and true and find different ways of doing and saying the same thing.
Paint outside the lines: It’s good to follow orders and well-established guidelines, but sometimes we have to go beyond the normal way of thinking and doing. I love to create as I go sometimes, and I have had good success in this.
Go where no man has gone before: Be an explorer. Chart new territory. Adventures can be fun.
Try the impossible: It is only impossible because no one has ever done it before. Want to be the first to break new ground? Go for the new, the novel, and the untried.
Look at it up-side-down: Sometimes all it takes is to look at a problem from a different perspective. Try standing on the other side of the table. Your game of chess will look entirely different to you from over there. And you just might discover some moves you would never have considered otherwise.
Write it backwards: Yet another way of looking at the problem. It’s not going backwards to write it backwards. It just might get you unstuck.
Write down every possible combination: Some call this “doing a mind dump”. I love this method because I can get all of my ideas on paper which helps keep my mind free to chase other ideas. Then comes the fun task of forming all sorts of connections, combinations and strings of ideas until the perfect ones come to the top and there you’ll find your solutions.
I wish you much success in your pursuit of your creative solutions. Remember what Steve Jobs once said?
Now THAT is creative problem solving!
Next week our topic will be Perseverance - The stuff champions are made of.