Social Question

Unbroken's avatar

What sort of problem solving do you do every day?

Asked by Unbroken (10291 points ) December 22nd, 2012

We all lead different lives. We encounter problems that are just minor inconveniences because we are so used to them.

So what are our common problems and what problems illustrate our unique life?

Have you found successful methods of handling them or just spin your wheels in them every time? Frustrated.

What are they or why not? Have you just accepted them?

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18 Answers

Shippy's avatar

This question could be answered many ways. For me it is dealing with Bipolar. Simply because some days I battle to function. More importantly though, it is the “shit” my illness causes. Like when I simply cannot see people, or I am exhausted or just don’t feel well. Then I don’t work. Which causes more issues. So to solve that I have gotten a more realistic view on my own life. Try to accept myself as I am, not easy. Work when I can, lower my expectations of money inflow currently and living a more frugal life. Sounds negative but its not I am finding other things more precious now. I’ve learned a lot from this illness. Oddly I wouldn’t change a thing! :)

SABOTEUR's avatar

What is a “problem”, anyway?

For me, a “problem” is any situation that occurs that produces stress or anxiety.

Becoming stressful and anxious over something does nothing to resolve the situation.

Removing stress and anxiety from the situation eliminates the “problem”. The situation then simply becomes something to deal with.

You find yourself dealing with whatever it is much more effectively without the excess emotional baggage.

SABOTEUR's avatar

My job with the Federal Government consists mainly of troubleshooting. Requests are made by taxpayers that must be addressed and forms are submitted that are incorrect or questionable. Questionable documents are routed to my job functions as “exceptions”.

“Exceptions” must be resolved so that the desired results are obtained. There’s no emotional element to it…other than the emotion introduced by people assigned to resolve the exceptions who insist on seeing the ‘exceptions’ as ‘problems’.

The biggest “problem” is they don’t know how to address the “exception”, or they can’t address it quickly enough.

What’s ironic is, if there were no exceptions, we’d have no job.

If there were no problems, we’d have nothing to complain about.

And for many of us, if there was nothing to complain about, we’d have nothing to do.

There are no problems. There are simply occurrences in life we’d prefer not to deal with Making ourselves sick about it should never be an option.

hearkat's avatar

Working in healthcare, I have to help my patients with their problems. In the evaluation part of my job, asking the right questions without leading them can help narrow the options for potential diagnoses. In the rehab part of my job, I again have to ask the right questions to determine whether the issue is due to the patient’s impairment or if something isn’t right with the corrective device. I am analytical by nature, so troubleshooting comes naturally and I enjoy what I do even after 20+ years.

Every day I have to deal with the problem of too many usually self-absorbed, and often distracted, drivers on the road.

At home, I have to deal with feline drama caused by one grouchy, old, territorial cat and one clueless, young, playful cat.

The only problem in my family is my 21-year-old son who is still trying to find a career, and although he is responsible, he has some issues that keep him from reaching his potential. Maintaining open communication and trying to prevent him from becoming too complacent without lecturing or nagging is the challenge.

BBawlight's avatar

The two back ranges on the stove don’t work, so I have to use the two small ones in the front even if I use the big pots. The computer that I’m using now has a power cord that doesn’t like to charge the laptop sometimes, so I have to adjust it.
The little house heater doesn’t reach my room because it’s in the back of the house. So i’m left to freeze at night I don’t get too cold because I have a feather-y blanket thing.

I don’t really care as much as I used to because I’m too lazy to fix these things. So they stay at a constant in my every-day life.

jaytkay's avatar

Working for an attorney, I find people. Sometimes people who do not want to be found.

When the name is something like Jose Garcia or Jenny Smith, it’s tough. On the opposite end, public figures are easy to find. Then the struggle is getting them to return a phone call.

cookieman's avatar

At work, I run an academic department at a college. So it’s everything from student advising, creative budgeting, keeping faculty both happy and focused, curriculum organization and improvement to textbook and technology choices.

Aside from being organized and a good communicator, I try really hard to anticipate problems and plan for them. That has worked out well for me.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I am an engineer. I figure things out. How big does that need to be? How much current will that line support? How fast does that need to switch? How low a signal will it pick up? Will it withstand an electrostatic discharge? How many g forces will it survive – and for how long?

I love my job!

bookish1's avatar

Every day I have to try to achieve a balance in managing my diabetes between being high functioning in the short term (it directly affects my mood and cognitive powers), and minimizing long term damage to my kidneys, eyes, and everything else. There are about 10 variables I know about that affect my blood sugar levels and insulin sensitivity, and many others that are a mystery to me. I have to estimate the grams of carbohydrates in everything I eat, and calculate my insulin dose based on my activity level and what I’m going to be doing the rest of the day. When I have blood sugar SNAFUs, I have to troubleshoot and figure out how to salvage my day.

I also have to be realistic about my depression and the amount of work I can get done in a given day. Learning to take mental health days, as well as judicious use of stimulants, has been very helpful.

I also face daily questions on how to navigate the world as a guy, when I am not 100% consistently read as one (but it gets better every day). Is it safe to go here when I might be read as some variety of queer? Will this bureaucrat completely disrespect me because I look weird and they can? What do I tell the cops when my documentation doesn’t match the gender they perceive me as? What do I say if a friend or acquaintance misgenders me, or asks a rude question that they would never ask someone who isn’t transsexual?

LuckyGuy's avatar

@bookish1 The problems you need to solve daily make mine look trivial.

gailcalled's avatar

Every waking decision is a form of problem-solving. You can extrapolate from what to have for breakfast to the more complex and farther-reaching ones.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

My mother has moderate-to-severe Alzheimer’s disease. I see her everyday and try my best to make her happy. It’s not easy to keep conversation going with someone who has little short-term or long-term memory. It’s often unpleasant to deal with someone who, through no fault of her own, is completely self-absorbed (she can’t see anything beyond herself and the moment at hand). But, my love is strong, and so is my determination.

Helpful suggestion—If you ever find yourself in this situation, adopt a sweet, gentle dog. Mom loves my black Labrador retriever mix, and I bring the dog along for many of my visits. The doggie’s a wonderful distraction.

gailcalled's avatar

^^ With my mother, who had senile dementia at age 93, we were able to do jigsaw puzzles, play double solitaire or coach her to play solitaire while we watched, play checkers (the games took forever so we left them up) and do easy crossword puzzles and simple word games.

Lucky you to have such a sweet dog that your mom loves. MIne would have flipped out.

Can you talk about the distant past? When she was young?

wundayatta's avatar

Every day I must solve the problem of how to stay alive. Most days it’s fairly simple. I’ve got things set up so they work pretty smoothly. Occasionally, though, I must face my worst enemy. He’s a murderous son of a bitch, and he doesn’t really care about anything, especially life. He loves to tantalize me with the pure pristine beauty of nothingness. He pops up out of nowhere, usually when things have been going along beautifully for a while, and next thing I know, I’m writing posts like this one. I’d kill him, except that’s exactly what he wants. God, I hate him with a passion!

bookish1's avatar

@wundayatta : I hate him too :-/

wundayatta's avatar

@bookish1 Sucks, don’t it?

bookish1's avatar

@wundayatta : Yeah. My shadow side doesn’t tempt me with the pristine beauty of nothingness, but with the extreme simplicity of just giving up. Just framing it differently I guess. I haven’t so far, but sometimes it sounds wonderful.

wundayatta's avatar

Yes, different people use different metaphors or, as you say, frame it differently, but it is pretty easy to see we’re all talking about the same thing. Giving up sound so tempting, too. But I know I won’t be able to give up unless I’m dead. My mind just keeps on going and going, even when things are as bad as they’ve ever been. Something to be thankful for, I suppose.

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