Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.
There are weeks in which everything's a problem.
There are months and years like that, too.
Somehow, we end up being confronted by (what look like) brick walls.
Rows and rows of brick walls, ones that were built to confound us.
An intractable boss, perhaps. Or co-workers who have all the team spirit of a bag of M&M's that falls on the floor of a subway car and scatters to all corners.
Your first instinct is to reach for one of those self-help management books.
You know it's useless, but it makes you feel as if you have good intentions.
At times, you're likely tempted to work around the problem.
You might decide to ignore it, in the hope that it'll magically disappear like a tired verucca.
You might continually stare at it, in the hope that the solution will appear like helpful law enforcement, equipped to untie you from the railway line before the train barrels through.
Sometimes, though, it's worth dismantling the problem altogether.
Problems often have several components.
For example, an ingrained system meets a ridiculous timetable meets legal requirements that are plainly insane.
It's just when you're at such a moment that you should dedicate four seconds to a rabbit.
This particular rabbit.
This rabbit who was confronted with a problem and wasn't going to solve it the conventional way.
My hero.-- Maria Konnikova (@mkonnikova) June 5, 2019
Now that's what I call creative problem-solving. pic.twitter.com/T4QLAL9scF
Instead, the rabbit decided the problem was less of a problem than it seemed.
It dismantled the problem and didn't allow it to disrupt the day.
(Actually, if you want to be picky, the real problem was the human that was making the rabbit confront this problem, but think of that human as either your boss or your client.)
Creativity often involves a complete reformulation of what the problem really is.
Too often, we accept someone else's definition of the problem.
Here's a wall. Jump over it.
The truth, though, might be very different.
What someone else thinks is a problem might just be something they've constructed as a problem when it's really a mere obstacle. Or even a game.
In essence, then, take the problem apart a little and see if you can get to the other side of it.
Then look back and say: "Hah."