Sunday, March 7, 2021

Click here to
sign up for our newsletter!

The Journals are the premier publications for high-quality, hyperlocal news and advertising in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Snap PEncil
Jul 02, 2018

“Challenges or Problems?”

By Glen J. Dalakian Sr.

Snap PEncil

Are you, as we all are from time to time, faced with “Challenges” or “Problems”? At first you might think this is just semantics, but if you dig deep, you may find a powerful tool in your perspective on these words. How you – and those around you – choose to interchange these terms could have a profound effect on finding solutions and on the level of enjoyment you get from doing so. Would you rather one of your people come to you saying “I have a Problem” or “I have a Challenge”?

To further clarify: Problems are ego-based and often cause reactionary thinking. Problems tend to attach themselves to people and affect them on a personal level, causing angst and trepidation. When problems become the focus of your attention, they will drain your energy. Problems can cause stress, anxiety, fear, anger and resentment. They often tie us to emotions that can run amok and sap strength.

Challenges are met with foresight and responsiveness; you know there is a bigger picture unfolding, and that you can bring to bear your experience in clearing hurdles, as you have in the past. You are detached from your challenges. Viewing something as a challenge gives you the ability to regain your energy, focus your efforts and recognize that you can rise above your circumstances, not be overcome by them. Challenges are simply hurdles to clear that lie in front of us on a temporary basis. They are opportunities to better ourselves and create a path that can be used again in the future when other issues may arise.

React or Respond? When one simply “reacts” – as people often do when faced with problems – they can make rash and emotional decisions, which can make a scenario worse. A “response” is usually more thought out and includes a patient analysis of the challenge and therefore will usually yield a better end result. When my boys were young, I would ask them, “What does it make you when someone spits on you?” Their answer was usually “angry.” “No,” I would say, “it only makes you wet. You choose from there.”

Let’s look at the simple definition of each of these words. You tell me if you can hear, feel and imagine the difference and the impact they can have in handling situations:

Problem – a matter or situation regarded as unwelcome or harmful and needing to be dealt with and overcome. “They have financial problems.”

Challenge – a call to take part in a contest or competition, especially a duel. “He accepted the challenge.”

So, are you up for the “Challenge” and ready to meet it with the best response, or would you rather be troubled by “Problems” over and over, while you hope you (or your people) will react well?

Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory. – George S. Patton