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Todd Treharne
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Todd Treharne   My Press Releases

You have a problem

Published on 11/1/2018
For additional information  Click Here

You have a problem

Your problem isn’t your problem. Your problem is how you see the problem.

Several years ago, I learned a valuable lesson about problems. At the time, I was serving as the president of a decent sized non-profit organization, and my team developed a habit that began to weigh me down. Every problem that they encountered ended up on my desk. Didn’t matter what the problem was, they brought it to me. 

Now, some people would say that’s the price of leadership. After all, what’s a leader good for if not to solve problems? And I would agree with them; leaders are meant to solve problems. Though there’s a powerful truth that most people miss when it comes to problem-solving and leadership, and I want you to catch it right off the bat:

The higher you go in leadership, the harder the problems you need to solve. 

Which brings me back to the organization I was leading and some of the problems I was being asked to solve. Should a top-level leader need to answer the question of whether to serve a whole graham cracker or half of a graham cracker at snack time for the kids? Should a top-level leader need to answer the question of standard white copy paper or bright white copy paper?

Of course not. Those are problems that leaders at lower-levels of authority could – and should – answer. Yet my team wasn’t answering those problems, they were bringing them to me. And them bringing their problems to me was quickly becoming a problem I needed to solve!

So, I instituted a new policy: all problems should be solved by leaders at the level where they occurred.

If it happened at ground level, the person overseeing ground level should solve the problem. If it happened in the office, then the office manager needed to solve it. 

If the leader couldn’t solve the problem, then they could bring the problem to me – along with three possible solutions, one of which had to include the lower-level leader. 

I was pleased how well my solution worked. The number of leaders who brought me problems was cut in half, and when leaders did bring me problems, they also brought me solutions. Most of the time, all I had to do was affirm the solution the leader wanted to implement, and they went on their way empowered with the confidence needed to make a positive change.

Often, our problems aren’t our problems – it’s our approach to problems that trip us up.

“No problem can withstand the assault of sustained thinking.” – Voltaire


If you think about how most people approach problems, you’ll notice something pretty quickly: no one likes problems. No one. As a result, most people approach problems with a bad attitude, which puts them immediately at a disadvantage. It’s tough to find a solution when your head isn’t in the right place. Changing your perspective about problems is the key to changing your approach to problem-solving. 

So, how can you change your perspective?

“Self-disciplined begins with the mastery of your thoughts. If you don't control what you think, you can't control what you do. Simply, self-discipline enables you to think first and act afterward.” - Napoleon Hill

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Learn to love problems.

Robert Kiyosaki once said, “Inside of every problem lies an opportunity.” That’s the key: to love problems, you have to see the benefits they bring. Problems have a wonderful way of introducing you to three key assets you can use to turn any challenge into a triumph. 

Problems introduce you to:

  1. Yourself – One of the surest lessons I’ve learned over the years is that adversity doesn’t build character, it reveals it. And nothing helps us grow and succeed as a leader like discovering our strengths and weaknesses when problems come. The greatest moments of growth are found within the challenges we face, so when we learn to embrace those growth opportunities, we transform our perspective.
  1. Others – Do you want to know who’s really on your team? Introduce a problem into the mix. I promise you that the folks who truly support you will become obvious. While it’s true that everyone loves a winner, not everyone loves a winner while they learn to win. Problems reveal who we can rely on in times of trouble, and show us the team we can count on to move forward with success.
  1. Opportunity – This is going to sound counter-intuitive, yet even the best leaders often miss doors of opportunity. No matter how good a leader may be, there are always opportunities that pass us by because we aren’t looking for them, or we’re not looking at them with the correct perspective. That’s because we often fall into comfortable patterns of thinking and working; when problems come along and knock us out of those patterns, we find a world of opportunities just waiting to be discovered. Viewing problems as a healthy “reset” on our perspective and thinking is a great way to discover the opportunities within.
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A leader rarely has two good days in a row, so you’re likely in the midst of one sort of problem or another. Whether it’s a problem at work or within your own personal life, there is a current situation just waiting to become an opportunity for growth.

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Take a moment and ask yourself these two questions:

  • Where am I facing a problem in my life right now?
  • What truths do I need to see about myself in order to move past this problem?

You may discover that you don’t need a solution to the problem as much as you need a solution to your own growth. If that’s the case, find a good book, a great podcast, or spend time with someone you trust and get some feedback on how to get your growth in gear. Developing yourself first is the key to transforming your problems into possibilities.

My friend, you’ll fly higher and farther when you learn to see problems differently. I know it’s changed the course of my life, and I believe it will do the same for yours.

You have a problem
Share with me what your thoughts on this are. What are you willing to do, TODAY< to step up and stand in your greatness? 

To Your Abundance and Prosperity!

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~Todd Treharne ~

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