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Stupid Rules - Always more than Two Solutions... 3 Steps to a New View

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Always more than Two Solutions - 3 Steps to a New View

Oct 11, 2016



In life and business, we are seemingly always confronted with the decisions of “Either / Or”. As if there are always only two possible solutions to any issue, problem, goal, or endeavor. Pass or Fail, Right or Wrong, Yes or No, Now or Later, and the list goes on. How did we seem to lose “And” in this equation?


Most of the time we allow ourselves to be confined by the standard buffet of two options. But if Golden Corral and Luby’s have taught us anything, life is filled with options. “Yes! I think I’ll have fish with mashed potatoes and fried okra.”  All buffet comments aside, when you step back with a different view, we will find that daily life offers more options than we care to examine. Working with business owners and salespeople over the years, I strive to teach forward thinking about issues and finding new solutions...


Below are 3 Easy Steps you can take

to help you view solutions differently:


1.)       Ask yourself “Who listed the available options?” In other words, were the solutions provided by the situation or did we self-impose them? (Some of the Stupid Rules I’ve written about). Think about that for a moment…


When we really step back we find that most options are self-imposed, a yes or no, the “right” way to accomplish something. Questioning the list of available options opens so many doors for previously hidden solutions. Just think of the current political choice you get to make… Vote for XYZ, Vote against XYZ, Write-in ABC, Not vote at all, Hide your vote, Proclaim your vote, etc etc etc. There are always more than 2 Solutions.




2.)       Ask yourself “Where are we trying to go?” When I build a Road Map for a business, one of the first questions I always ask their team is, “Where are your goals?”. This simple question removes some of the self-imposed obstacles, details, and limits blocking our path. Then we can work on the numerous ways to accomplish them.


Have you ever heard the adage, “can’t see the forest for the trees..” as a reminder to look at the bigger picture? Take a lesson from the Dread Pirate Roberts (20th Century Fox - The Princess Bride), if your ultimate goal is to traverse the Fire Swamp safely with your would-be bride, don’t self-impose the thought that you can’t accomplish it before you even begin the endeavor.



3.)       Take a moment to learn from each experience. This might be the most difficult step to incorporate into our daily lives. In our fast-paced world, we immediately start putting out the next fire or take the next step. We seem to generally compartmentalize each encounter as a stand-alone item. The decision process there won’t work for this encounter here. Remember, it isn’t about the decision itself, it’s all about the process of looking for options. You will find that with each new encounter, you'll begin to instinctively “know” there is another avenue or option on the table and begin searching for options again.


We are all in this world together, all searching for our opportunities and all seeking a brighter day. Never hesitate to share, talk, comment, and reach out about this blog… you never know what the next encounter will bring. Always another solution waiting to be discovered…



Adam M. Brest


“Who Made These Stupid Rules?”