"lather. Rinse. Repeat" Set the Stage for High Payoff Problem-solving

How many times a day do you feel like your time is being wasted?

Is this you? You’re sitting in a meeting and while someone else is talking about a problem that they feel needs to be solved, you’re wondering why they don’t get on with it, or whether anyone else thinks this is the forum for such a small issue, or why they think everyone needs to know about it.

Then when the next person leaps in with a great idea they’ve thought of, your mind chatters away with “Oh, that idea, again!” or “Jeez, everyone knows that’ll never work!” or “That’s got nothing to do with what needs doing here!”

One of the most overlooked reasons for breakdowns in personal and business productivity is “right behind your eyes!”

Your mind’s in a fog because of all the assumptions and convictions that are chattering away, having their own conversation. They’re blocking your ability to listen with an open mind, think analytically about the information you have or need to get, and develop targeted solutions.

And you’re not the only one operating that way! Situations in business and life have become so complex that a simple answer isn’t always apparent. And all of our personalities are so diverse that we’re all frankly lousy at mindreading.

All that brain power and experience is being regularly flushed down the time drain instead of being used to actually identify what needs solving and solve it!

So where does that leave us? You need to learn techniques that help you focus and identify the real issues buried behind the chaos, and get your attention back on what it takes to Achieve Your Vision.

Here is a taste of the first of the 7 Essential Techniques I use with my clients to recover their ‘brain power’ and increase their productivity: They’re not taught in schools or get rich manuals, but they create productivity increases of 60% to 300% in as little as 10 minutes.

Technique 1 – “Lather. Rinse. Repeat” – Vent the ‘Story’ Are you finding no one has any attention for actually solving things! Do you feel like a lot of finger pointing and blaming is going on, instead of work? Do you find people on your team have their reason why the other is creating complications and problems? And what about you? Let’s start using the technique with you.

Take a lesson from shampoo manufacturers. You can’t make headway when everyone is fixated on the events leading up to the meeting to solve them. Get the entire story told, in the utmost detail, until you’ve said it all. Not in discussion, not in dialogue. Here are the steps to use

1 – Identify some issue you’re not making any headway on

2 – find a partner to do this exercise with

3 – Print out this page or forward it to them so they can read it

4 – Ask your partner to listen, just listen and ask yourself “Is there anything else?” every time you pause

5 – When you get to the end of the story, if your answer to that question is even to pause to check, go right back to the top and start the story from the beginning and repeat the steps.

Notice that there’s no problem-solving. Just stir up the lather in the situation thoroughly, then rinse and repeat.

Repeat the process until you cannot add a single thing, and then tell it again – at some point you’ll get fed up with the story on your own and be ready to move on to actually solving the real issue.

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