We all want to be understood. This is a fundamental principle of our being.
To feel that someone truly “gets us, knows us, feels what we feel, and can relate to us.”
This resonance and simpatico is the strength of relationships.
But when it comes to “understanding” problems, discovering our motivations and why the problem is what it is, understanding may just be the very thing blocking progress.
Examine the word for a moment Under-Stand
To stand under something is to not see it.
To not see it, is to not know it.
To not know a way out or around it.
To stand under something is to have a weight above you—something impenetrable and too heavy to shake off.
Einstein said, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”
So we need a way out. Perhaps OVER standing our problems is a beginning.
To overstand means to make yourself bigger than the problem.
This shift in perspective can be just the spark to get unstuck.
Shifts in perspective can occur through time and points of view and can generate ideas for the present.
Simply imagining how you will feel about the problem 5 years from now, 5 months from now, 5 weeks from now etc., loosens up your rigid thinking for fresh problem-solving.
Stepping outside your viewpoint to see it through the lens of another person is helpful for innovative thinking or negotiation.
Getting bigger than the problem by rephrasing it can be helpful. Our brains love to answer questions, so make sure you ask a quality question. For example, If you are constantly asking,…”Why do I always pick the wrong person to fall in love with?” You could ask,… “What would it take for me to find a healthy loving relationship?
You could even ask this question in reverse. For example, What would I look for in a person to make sure it would be the worst possible relationship for me? What would that person have to be, do, or have, that would make me positively miserable? You can unwind the answer to find a new approach.
The next time you are in an argument, negotiation or are dealing with a problem practice consciously shifting from the mindset of UNDERSTANDING. Use any of these options.
I hear what you’re saying.
I get what you’re talking about.
I respect that you feel ___________
I appreciate that you want______________
Get bigger than the problem and be willing to see an outcome you want.