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7 Reasons You Face The Same Problems Again And Again

7 Reasons You Face The Same Problems Again And Again

I’ve done it. So have you. We keep doing the same thing and we keep getting the same results. Sometimes they are the results we don’t really want. And when it comes to the challenges, the same goes. wW seem to manifest the same problems again and again.

Why is that? Why do the same problems (hiding in different shapes and forms) keep rearing their ugly head?

Proponents of The Law of Attraction believe that if you keep complaining about a problem or challenge, or obsessively think about it, you just recreate the problem. Could that be the reason it keeps reappearing?

Maybe. But I believe there’s more, and it’s all about learning a lesson.

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Now, keep in mind that there are things that happen in the world for no apparent reason. It’s the Uncertainty Principle at work, and it’s a reality of physics and life. But most of the time, events and circumstances in your life keep reappearing until you get that major take away – the one that is life transforming. That “ah ha-I’ve got this!” moment. Comprendez?

Let’s break it down. Why do you face the same problems (although repackaged) again and again? Here’s why (and as you will see, it all has to do with your ability to LEARN the lesson):

1.You are wearing blinders or earmuffs.

In other words, you are only choosing to see or hear what you want to in a particular circumstance, instead of being open to new ideas, points of view and information, which may, in fact, be in direct opposition to your beliefs.

2.You believe your way is the only way.

This is all about your ego. If you put up a roadblock or “do not enter” sign, how can you expect to anything to change? When young children can’t get their way, they stand, arms folded and pout. The problem won’t go away when you pout and are inflexible.

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3. Your communication is kinked.

When a wire is kinked, it can’t transmit a signal properly. The same goes with your ability to communicate. If you don’t communicate clearly, and without drama or negative words, you won’t relay what you truly intend to. That problem will just resurface.

4. You lack understanding, empathy and compassion.

Some of the world’s toughest challenges and problems are resolved through understanding, empathy and compassion for others. If the problem involves others, can you put yourself in someone else’s shoes and view the problem from their point of view?

5. You are unwilling to take (calculated) risks or you take too many poor risks.

Taking calculated risks entails understanding the consequences and potential loss or gain of the risk before you take it. If the gain appears greater the loss, it may be a risk you are willing to take. Problems keep repeating themselves when you fear taking any risk, even a favorable one. Trying something new involves being a bit vulnerable and opening up to learning something new. Or at the other extreme, you have chosen to take too many poor risks which lead to back to the same place, same old problem.

6. You are stuck in your backyard bubble.

Sometimes problems can be resolved by changing up your landscape. Venture out of your bubble to discover and explore new environments, people, and new ways of doing things. Then your problem may be tackled with fresh solutions.

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7. You have watched Groundhog Day too many times.

Just like in the movie, Groundhog Day, Bill Murray keeps waking up each morning and living the new day nearly exactly as the day before. Everything repeats itself.

The key to break the “same problem” cycle is to recognize and acknowledge your mistakes, learn the lesson, and move forward. Don’t play victim. Don’t blame your mom, dad, boyfriend, girlfriend, sister, brother or best friend. Don’t blame the abuser or the bully. With certain exceptions of random events, most of your life is dictated by you and how you choose to respond to life circumstances.

You co-create your reality. You are the driving force behind much of your life’s direction, events and challenges. You create most of your own struggles.

All of this simply boils down to you learning something from the continued problems you face. If it’s a money problem, perhaps you need to learn how to better manage money. If it’s a relationship problem, you may need to work on enhancing your communication skills. When problematic situations in your corporate career continue to appear, maybe its a sign to opt out and try a fresh start.

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Whether you are younger or older, you can always learn something new. Most top leaders are not afraid to try new things for fear of failure. They push past each and every problem they may encounter, learn from mistakes and move forward. That ability to be resilient is a major key to success (on many levels) in life. The same problems no longer reappear, but be ready for new ones along the way. Problems are only life’s way of teaching you a lesson.

Are you ready and willing to learn?

Featured photo credit: CollegeDegrees360 via flickr.com

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

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