Why do we sometimes not take action? Sometimes we see a problem and even figure out a plausible solution, but then just keep on keeping on without attempting to fix things up.
I am just going to make an observation here. I am not trying to be a reductionist. There are lots of problems and many reasons that we do not take action to solve them. Perhaps there also are many reasons why problem solvers get busy trying to fix problems. Yet, as I have observed the behavior of problem solvers, one attribute stands out. Simplicity.
This is not to say that the best problem solvers are diehard minimalists. Hardly. Many of the people who take action to fix things up are mess makers and live in a state of chaos around their houses and offices. But when it comes to solving problems, they simplify. Think of this basic graphic:
You | Stuff between you and the solution to a problem | Solution
The goal is to get from where you are to the solution. Wouldn’t that be easier if there was less stuff between you and the solution to a problem? Problem solvers simplify the middle, which does not mean that the solution to a problem will be simplistic. The solution might be very complex. All the more reason to simplify the middle.
So let me clarify my observation. Problem solvers do not insist on simple solutions to problems. Sometimes a simple solution might work. Other times a complex solution is the answer. The way that problem solvers make use of simplicity is in the middle. They simplify the stuff between themselves and the solution to a problem.
Here is a final observation. No one is apathetic about a solution to a problem they want solved. If we are handed a solution, we will take it. Apathy exists in the middle, where simplifying requires hard work and discomfort and changed behavior.