In my Honours degree, we read about a lot of achievers and the secrets to their success. We read of intellectual minds who concluded economic theories and mathematical functions and since the impact of the Credit Crunch in 2008 we are often questioned by lecturers to challenge these tips, tricks and theories. After all, discovery and innovation are not always ‘Eureka!’ moments. We must be able to take the old and make it new again: to see what others don’t see.
In the Patch Adams movie starring Robin Williams (one of my favourite films and actors!) the character of Arthur Mendelson tells Adams the following:-
“You’re focusing on the problem. If you focus on the problem, you can’t see the solution. Never focus on the problem..See what no one else sees. See what everyone chooses not to see… out of fear, conformity or laziness. See the whole world anew each day!”
I know this sounds like one of those “thinking hat” moments and is easier said than done but if you just give your mind some time to sink in the above film quote you will realise that our greatest ideas don’t come instantaneously but are a result of long reasoning, sharing opinions with others and observing something that strangely enough was there all along but no one really noticed.
Sometimes we’re too concerned with the problem when we should be thinking of the solution. And the worst part is when we take things for granted just because everyone believes it works that way or we are comfortable with what we have. There’s nothing wrong with feeling comfy of course but there’s always the danger of being wrapped in a blanket of false security. Just some food for thought.