Sunday, April 5, 2015

Problem vs. Opportunity Mindset

So it comes down to how one perceives: A 'problem' for one, is an 'opportunity' for the other.

We are all familiar with such philosophical reasoning: Every risk (problem) has opportunity in it; and every opportunity has risk (problem) in it. Isn't opportunities and problems the same thing only with a perceptive change? Doesn't it come down to how we view the situation - at the time it could be a problem or it could be an opportunity. Or to put simply, are they sort of mindset?


Seeing something as a problem or an opportunity is definitely all about personal perception. All problems are opportunities, but not all opportunities are problems. However, most opportunities generate problems that need to be solved, aka more opportunities. The difference between solving a problem and capitalizing on the opportunity the problem represented is largely semantics, A "problem" is an opportunity waiting to happen. There are criteria that characterize good and bad statements of problems and opportunities. Some problems are essentially damaging in some way. So it would be glib to say that a problem is an opportunity. However, in some cases, depending on one’s psychological make-up, it is in fact an opportunity. Some delusion may be essential to finding opportunities out of problems. A problem often leads to opportunities because they challenge us to address something that is not working for us. As Maslow said," What are called personality problems depends on who is doing the calling."


It is how you approach a problem that can generate an opportunity. An undesirable event is just that - an undesirable event. What happens as a result of that is purely an outcome of the mindset, growth and ongoing impact of the event, an optimistic vs. pessimistic perspective. Desirable events have the same outcome possibilities. The more time that you are given to analyze the situation, the more likely you are to find more opportunities than problems. Some problems are huge and the potential for opportunity may seem to be limited. But if you are not looking for opportunities, you are unlikely to discover them. Change is the only constant outcome of all of what happens, and the mindsets of the people facing the challenges in front of them open the possibilities of the extent of that change. Challenges and opportunities give "meaning." Without a purpose nothing we see has any use. Without purpose it is impossible to "improve" it or make it efficient. And therefore, it is possible to set a target and seek to accomplish that in the most efficient manner possible.


It takes collaboration to transform the mankind problems into progressive opportunities:  We don't live in a "closed system" but one which is complex,interrelated and interconnected. Our needs and priorities may be different, but it takes collaboration to overcome the challenges and grasp opportunities. We "co" operate many of the systems that we and others have built to "move us forward" as a species, often seeking the maximum efficiency. This has resulted in incredible leaps in science and technology. We are able to tap into energy and transform materials with incredible ease and efficiency. Yet, still our environment reacts and changes with us. We get bored with our successes, complacent with our accomplishments, act foolishly in our pride. And not everyone wants to "co-operate." Some want to do their own thing, or do things the easy way, or just the way that most pleases them and then we end up in head to head destructive competition which causes more problems.


So it comes down to how one perceives: A 'problem' for one, is an 'opportunity' for the other. Opportunities arise from the problems that people face. Today, with the latest technology tools, the real advantage is to foresee opportunities before the problem, to anticipate latent needs and find solutions for it.


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