Can You Describe How You Process Through a Problem?

“Our brains turn into simple signal-processing units, quickly shepherding information into consciousness and then back out again.” ~Nicholas Carr

When I first got into coaching people, I thought that the first thing I needed to do was to help them solve a problem.  

I was wrong, that is consulting. I do that also from time to time. It is not the same as coaching.  People and coaches can get that one messed up. 

What I now know is that the first thing I need to do is listen and then ask good questions. 

One of the first things I want them to understand is how they are working and functioning in the world around them. One of the ways I learn more about that is by helping them solve one of the biggest problems in their lives. I learn their way of problem solving. We all have a way that we solve problems. We actually have multiple ways that we solve problems depending on the number of emotions involved in the situation.

Knowing and understanding how you solve a problem: actually, writing it out, placing it in a flow chart and printing it, can be transformative.

When we don’t know how or why we do something we can’t see it to change it.  How we solve a problem is how we are coming to some outcome, with the same pattern, expecting different results. It is so much fun to teach people about their process and educate them on other options.

They always grab onto a couple of new options to add to their problem-solving process, these new options are typically in alignment with the neural processing of their brain, and it shifts the outcome in the most amazing ways.

This is what I LOVE about the work that I do. I don’t just give people a solution, I give them new tools so they can build millions of new solutions. 

Do you know your process?  

If not, next time you are working on solving a small problem for yourself, take out a sheet of paper and also keep track of how you are solving this problem.

Here is an example from a friend of mine.

She noticed a funny purple spot on her skin, then another one, then another one.  

This concerned her and seemed odd.  Decided not to ignore it.

She googled and found what it could be, and it recommended that she see a doctor.  

She called and made an appointment and visited her Dr.

The Dr. explained that it was an OK thing and that it was from having too much vitamin K in her system and also too much of something else.

She then thought about and looked at all of the vitamins she is taking and noticed one had extra “k” added to it. Also, one of the others might be an issue.

She then formed a plan on how to test to see if these were the issues.

She then told me her plan.

I pointed out that she was doing her old problem-solving process, where she doesn’t finish asking all of the questions and starts to guess at what she needs to do. Months ago, she hired a professional expert in the field of nutrition to advise her on her vitamins and foods. Why would she not talk to her right now and THEY would come up with a strategy and a testing process.

She agreed and contacted the person to create that plan.

She will share her plan with me, and I will help support her in being accountable to the implementation of the plan over the coming weeks.

This is how she typically processes a problem. The new thing she added that she had not been doing in the past, was trusting her advisors. She liked to ask people for help and then do only some of what they said and then not use them again, because she didn’t get the results, she thought she would. She only did 20% of what they said she should do, so she only got 20% of the results and blamed them for missing the other 80%. She actually laughs at it when she catches herself going back into her old habit

In case you’re wondering, she gave 100% to the nutritionist she hired and has had amazing results. She is in the best health she has been in in 20 years. She is a senior on a mission and is really making things happen in her life.

Learn more about your problem-solving process and then you can empower yourself to add in some new options.  Change the process, change the results.

If you need help with this, you know how to call.  Me.  We can figure it out.


JoyGenea Schumer
Business Owner, International Neurodiversity Coach and Speaker

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