Solving Small Problems Before They Become Big Ones

Solve small problems before they become big problems. Sounds like something Mom would say.  If she didn’t she should have and if she did, she was right!  If you recognize the tiniest things that go amiss when they do, you can address them right away. When you do, they do not become big problems. Life is a bit easier and less traumatic.

The smallest things tend to be ignored. When they are, one thing after another piles up until they have grown into a huge, big problem. Staying aware of the tiniest details will keep you not only at the top of your game but take you to new levels of achievement. As you address and solve each small issue as it arises, you will smooth out a lot of rough bumps in the road of life, too.  And, while there will always be bumps, they become fewer and less dramatic.

Start by noticing or paying attention to the tiniest annoyances. We have become so accustomed to living with minor annoyances that we rarely are able to even identify them let alone correct them right away:

  • Does your partner leave the cap off the toothpaste tube?
  • Does your spouse constantly finish your sentences when you ask them not too?
  • Does your boyfriend seem oblivious to feelings and at a loss for discussing emotions?

All of these are tiny annoyances can add fuel to derail a relationship in the future. They have a way of acquiring mass and will eventually accumulate into a mountain of problems and block your path to change and growth.

These are just tiny examples of small seeds that could indicate deep future problems.  Watch closely how you respond to life’s little issues: are they with calm detachment, frustration, or anger? Our feelings associated with small annoyances can give us a clue as to how we are going to handle them in the future. These may seem like tiny things right now but over years they add up to a significant negative impact on you and your relationships. By training yourself to spot small annoyances, small problems, and address them at the time they are small, you will avoid undergoing much grander, more painful remedies later.

It is easy to ignore the small, subtle warning signs that say, “something is wrong here.”  These subtle signs, if noticed and addressed when they surface, mean that you can easily solve small problems.  Solve small problems before they become big problems.  Focusing on the small mistakes now can save you years of costly corrections such as painful divorce or years of counseling.

Ok, so how do you start spotting them? The first step is learning how to notice the small annoyances, the ones we accept and ignore. It’s always easy to spot the crack in the ceiling once the rain has soaked the plaster. It is possible to train yourself to see the small warning signs early:

  • Recall a big mistake you made in your life.
  • Consider the small warning signs that appeared along the way it developed.
  • What were they?
  • Did you ignore the issue for a while?
  • How long?
  • What would you do now to recognize it developing again?
  • What could you have done to stem it earlier on?

Try this easy exercise to sharpen your small problem awareness! Write down some note about it in a journal.  Pay attention when you see some of the early warning signs crop up again.  We are creatures of habit and will usually repeat the same mistakes unless we spot them and change them.

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