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The Importance of Problem Solving

Recognising the role of emotions

When do you make your best decisions?

For some people, it is when they are under pressure, while others find that they need to feel relaxed to choose the right option. Unsurprisingly, how you feel can change how you approach and handle decisions.

So, before you can improve the quality of your decisions, you first need to recognise the role emotions play in this process. This is a key skill associated with problem solving, one of the fifteen areas of emotional intelligence.

Problem solving refers to understanding the impact emotions can have on decision making and being able to find solutions even when emotions are involved. It involves using both emotions and logic to make effective decisions, without becoming overwhelmed.

Here are just 3 reasons why problem solving is so important in the workplace:

1. Someone with good problem-solving skills tends to take a systematic approach when making decisions. This increases the chances of reaching a well thought through conclusion or solution because you are more likely to identify the problem, gather the relevant information and weigh up the pros and cons without becoming distracted by your emotions.

2. If you are effective at problem solving, you are likely to consider your emotions without letting them control you. Being open to exploring your emotional reactions, or gut feelings, in a logical and rational way can help make better decisions because it means you are considering all of the information available to you. This includes the information provided by emotions. For example, if you feel anxious about a possible solution, it may suggest that it is a riskier option.

3. Someone with strong problem-solving abilities is likely to solve problems in emotionally driven situations, such as conflicts between colleagues, without becoming overwhelmed. This means you are less likely to worry or procrastinate when making decisions and others will often view you as a decisive member of the team.

Having good problem solving skills allows you to make systematic, well thought out decisions and consider the influences of your emotions. So, to begin improving the quality of your decisions in the workplace, consider developing your problem solving skills.

Learn more about developing your emotional intelligence today with EQ Extra.

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