Three things I learned last week that you can apply to anything, anything in life.
I don’t take credit for any of these, but I find myself repeating them to myself through every interaction I have had since then. Take a problem you are working on and apply the below.
What you know
Simply put, what do you know about the problem, what facts do you have in front of you that jump out at you as important and frame the view of what is forming the framework of the problem. The facts, not the emotions and definitely not the assumptions.
What you don’t know
On this problem, what do you not know- what hard facts still remain that you do not know about. It’s the missing puzzle pieces in the problem that are holding you back and perhaps that is the best way to think about it – “what do I not have, that is preventing me from moving forward.” Not knowing how to code the solution? Definitely something you don’t know. Don’t know how this process works? Something you don’t know.
What you need to know
What is ambiguous, what is eating at you, what is making your gut say – “no that’s not it, we’re not there yet”. These are the questions you need to ask next to be able to move forward in the problem and solve for what you do not know. Do you need to expand on what you know (expanding your worldview and framework) or is where you are enough that you simply need some additional blanks filled in.
And to coin NBC, now you know, three simple questions anyone can remember from sports, to work, to fixing the garage door opener.