The power of patience

Take it slow, choose wisely.

How often have you heard somebody say: 'The real cause of this problem is....(such and such).

It's desirable for us to what to pin point one simple basic reason for something being a problem.

Find it and fix it and your problem goes away, but sadly there are no simple and easy solutions to the complex issues that we face today.

As a simple example, if somebody is seriously injured in a car accident where the driver of one of the cars tests positive for driving under the influence of alcohol - the policeman on the scene of the accident will identify the cause of that accident to be the drunk driver, and will have him arrested.

A mechanic looking at the wrecked cars might suggest that the fact that one of the vehicles had very worn tyres, and because the accident happened at night and because it was raining at the time, notifies the insurance company that the loss of control of the vehicle was as a result of there being a lack of tyre tread.

A psychologist counselling the survivors might identify the traumatic childhood of the drunk driver as the root cause of why he was excessively drinking alcohol in the first place.

Subjectively, for each one of these experts there are plausible root causes for the accident. They might all be right; they could also all be entirely wrong, but from their own perspectives they will recommend a solution to this problem that will be justified by their experience - which is most probably completely ineffective and wrong.

In organisations problems often come up, and in response, management is obliged to detect the 'root cause' of the issue and quickly solve those problems. Unfortunately the proposed interventions very often don't solve the issue or actually make the problem even worse.

Not enough time is given to really trying to understand the complex nature of the problem or solutions are hastily applied because of ignorance or arrogance.

The supposed route out of the mess often just leads you straight back in.

We are culturally an action-orientated society.

We demand results, something to be done, quick solutions - where what is probably the best thing to do when faced with a complex problem of this nature is to pause any kind of reaction.

Fighting the urge to act, the best countermove is actually patience and rather a commitment to exploring and creating an ideal future state where the problems that crop up today are not able to even exist.

Momentary inaction shouldn't be confused with passive acceptance, on the contrary, it is rather a calculated pause to thoroughly process and understand to ensure an eventually effective response.

An act in response to a problem will have knock-on consequences of its own.

Before you consciously choose to act then, be mindful of this fact; and realise that patience is also a powerful remedy that is also available to you.

Take it slow, choose wisely.