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Seek the outcome, not the solution

For every problem you have in your life, there’s always a solution that will lead you to the outcome you desire. It can be difficult to work out what the solution is, but I’m here to tell you that sometimes you just shouldn’t try to work it out.

If you know what the problem is, then you can work out what your desired outcome is, which is often just the resolution of the problem.

Some examples:

  • Problem: you’re single and can’t find a suitable boyfriend
  • Desired outcome: you have a wonderful boyfriend!
  • Problem: you’re broke and have no money to pay the credit card debt
  • Desired outcome: you have money to pay the credit card debt, and more!
  • Problem: you feel trapped in a job you hate
  • Desired outcome: you have freedom in a job you love!
  • Problem: you can’t buy that awesome car because other priorities are more important
  • Desired outcome: you have the awesome car without your other priorities being affected!

It’s easy to understand what a desired outcome is likely to be if you can understand and define the problem. But how do you get the desired outcome if you don’t also define the solution that will lead you there?

This is where you have to let go of your desire to control everything in your life.

If you try to define the solution you’ll then spend your time looking for opportunities and experiences that you think match your defined solution. If something comes along that doesn’t match it, then you’ll ignore it.

But that is exactly why you still have the problem in your life.

By choosing not to define the solution, you’ll be far more open to taking advantage of opportunities that come along that might just lead you in the direction of your desired outcome.

How to define your desired outcome

The problem/outcome examples I gave above are very simplistic. When you start defining your desired outcome, you really need to go into great detail. You need to write a story about what the outcome looks like in your life, how it makes you feel, what your experiences are, and how rewarding your life is as a result of it.

For example, when I was single a few years ago, I defined my problem as always being with the wrong women, in the wrong relationships, doing the wrong things.

I wrote everything that I could think of to describe the experiences and feelings I would have in my desired outcome – a wonderfully fulfilling relationship with the right woman for me, including me being the right man for her – and then I put the two pages I’d written away in a drawer and forgot about them. A month later (just over two years ago now) I met a woman who I quickly discovered was a perfect match for the desired outcome I’d defined. Next month I’ll be marrying her.

As the past two years have gone by, there have certainly been problems, just like in any relationship, but we’ve worked on those problems, and have gotten closer to each other as a result. Everything that I’ve been experiencing in my relationship with her has mostly been in alignment with the desired outcome I wrote about.

If I tried to define a desired solution to achieve the desired outcome, I would have screwed it up. I would never have met her, and never achieved the desired outcome, because I would have blinded myself to opportunities that didn’t match what I thought I wanted.

So when you think about how you can resolve some of the problems in your own life, stop thinking about how you can resolve them, and just think about what the resolution or desired outcome would be.

Clearly define the outcome you want, and put everything you can into describing it, and then just let your eyes be open to all opportunities that come your way.

Don’t ever hesitate to do something or take advantage of something that you think might be worthwhile or enjoyable or rewarding – you just never know where it will lead you.

If you have experiences that match this, where you’ve achieved your desired outcome, please feel free to share in the comments below.

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