“If I had an hour to solve a problem I’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.”
― Albert Einstein
My dearest Shosh and Jaialai:
Yesterday, we started talking about using your head. This is critical! Always think before you act. Always!
Allot at least half your available time to thinking critically and defining the problem. What is the size and scope of the problem? What are the issues and implications of the problem? If you don’t fully understand the problem, you may end up “solving” the wrong problem and creating more of a mess.
Fools rush in. Don’t be a fool!
However, don’t over-think, or spend too much time thinking that you never get to the action stage. This is often referred to as “analysis paralysis.” It is mostly driven by fear, e.g., fear of failure.
The moment of absolute certainly rarely arrives, if at all. Thus, do the best analysis you can, given the time and resources you have available. Then, act based on that information.
Reevaluate and reanalyze your strategy using newly available information. This includes data from the results of your actions. Use this stage as a learning opportunity. Reexamine your process of gathering data, your analysis, your strategy, etc. Then, update your processes and strategies.
You know I’m given to action, and prefer the company of those who do to those who stand on the sideline of life and comment. Yet, I never downplay the import of thinking critically and deeply before taking action.
Don’t ever make the mistake of thinking that you must act immediately, and not take time to assess the situation. Take the time! If you have a minute to act, take at least 30 seconds to analyze the situation.
(By the way, this “think before you act” rule applies equally — maybe especially — to the act of speaking. We have a saying: “curl your tongue seven times before you speak.” How true! Think of all the times you misspoke and wished you could take back your words. Wouldn’t it be better if you had never spoken the harmful words at all? So, think before you speak.)
Remember, your mind is your greatest tool. Use it.
All my love, always,