I don’t have problems. I don’t believe there are problems.
It’s not because my life is perfect. It’s because I’ve trained my brain to think a different way. If having no problems seems too far-fetched, consider what Theodore Isaac Rubin said,
“The problem is not that there are problems. The problem is expecting otherwise and thinking that having problems is a problem.”
When problems become a source of distress, or anxiety, that is a problem! If you believe in problems (if you think that having problems is a problem), it’s easy to claim the problem as your own. You claim a problem when you say, “My problem is…”.
Stop Claiming Problems
“My problem is I don’t know how to do XZY.” Read that sentence a few times and think about a time you said something similar. Seems harmless, right? Now think about how long you thought about that problem before you did anything about it.
You keep thinking, and don’t take action, because claiming the problem keeps you attached to the problem—you own it. Once you own something, it’s hard to let it go. It’s like your brain wants to prove you right—you have a problem. The problem lingers because you never get to the second half of your sentence. And the interesting thing is that once you do, the words that follow “My problem is...”, are never the real problem.
These days, there are very few things you can’t Google, and if that’s a dead end, you can call a friend, or a professional. You can always figure it out. No problem.
So, is the problem that you didn’t know how to do XYZ? Or is the problem that you don’t know how—in this moment—and don’t want to have to take the time to figure it out?
If it feels like I’m spinning you in circles trying to get you dizzy and confused, I promise I’m not!
But I hope you can see that when you say, “I don’t know how...”, the real issue may be that you’re impatient, or maybe, just being lazy (if I’m being honest, I’ve been there too!).
A little more complex (and triggering) are time and money problems. People love to fight for their time and money problems! Let’s take a look at the real issues with these supposed problems.
The Truth About Time Problems
Ever wonder why some people get an extraordinary amount done in a day with time left over, and some people never seem to get caught up and never have enough?
It boils down to a few common culprits, with the big one being lack of commitment. Lack of focus and lack of boundaries are secondary excuses, but if commitment is high, these can be overcome. Your level of commitment is based on your priorities, and let’s face it, some things just aren’t going to make the list.
Be honest with yourself. If you discover that the thing you're calling a problem is not worthy of making it high enough on your list, let it go as quick as you can. If you decide it’s important, re-commit to making time for it. Start with very small blocks of time. Start forming a new habit. The amount of time something takes is irrelevant if you're truly committed.
The Truth About Money Problems
Money is never a problem unless you believe that you don’t have enough, and that the only way to get what you want is with money. This is especially true if there’s something you want to buy, and you don’t have the cash in hand—it feels like a big problem!
Again, get honest with yourself. Do you really want this thing? Do you want it bad enough to save for it? Is impatience the real issue? Or worthiness? What if you don’t need money to get it?
If that sounds strange, consider that there are many ways to acquire things without money. Remember when you were a kid? You didn’t have money for anything, and yet all your needs were met. If you’re thinking, “I’m an adult now and that can’t happen”, I want to challenge you to consider that it can. You could receive a large gift, find some cash, or find someone to barter with. The possibilities are endless—as long as you don’t cut yourself off from them.
I have a theory that if a person wants something bad enough (if it’s a high priority) they’ll figure out a way to get it. If you haven’t figured it out, you might not want it that badly, so stop torturing yourself and let it go.
How to Live Problem-Free in Three Simple Steps
To sum things up here are three simple steps you can take to get rid of all (or at least the majority of) your problems—for good.
- Drop the words (and thought), “My problem is...” from your vocabulary. Stop claiming the problem. Whether it’s a problem or not, it doesn’t serve you to say the words, so let them go.
- Find the truth. Take a look at the second half of your statement and go deeper. Is the real problem impatience? Laziness? Indecisiveness? Lack of commitment? Keep digging until you feel the “Ah-ha!”
- If you still feel the need to solve the problem (if you haven’t decided to let it go), devise a plan, make a decision, re-commit. Whatever it takes, you can figure it out.