Problems, We All Have Them, But What’s The Solution?

“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking that created them.”

Albert Einstein (hybrid quote)

“The problem isn’t that life’s complicated, as if it can’t be understood or figured out, but more in that our thinking is what makes it complicated.” – Bradford Lee Mace

“Bottom line, I removed myself from the victim mentality and took control of my life. I’m not just going to take responsibility for the success in my life – I’m going to take responsibility for the failures in my life. When you’re willing to accept that you’re the problem, you immediately become the solution.” – Eric Thomas

The lesson I learned from my daughter’s

Take a child, for example,

They often see life more clearly than most adults.

If you don’t believe me, try testing it as I’ve done.

Of course, you’ll have to have children to test this on. lol

Over the years I’ve given my daughter’s real-life scenarios, from my personal experiences.

And asked them specific questions in search of finding the answer to the challenges these scenarios presented.

What I noticed was astounding!

  • They immediately identified the heart of the matter.
  • It was easy for my daughters to see the situation from both points of view.
  • They quickly identified the issue that was causing the problem or misunderstanding.
  • And promptly came up with a solution that was fair and reasonable.

Why was it easy for them?

Simple, they didn’t have any baggage complicating their thinking.

They had clarity because they had no baggage or as I call it “trash thinking.”

More specifically they didn’t have a bias nor was pride getting in their way and more importantly, their feelings weren’t in control of their thinking.

What’s the take away here,

If you want to simplify your life and find more efficient solutions to your problems, you have to clean up your thinking and take out the trash.

  • Remove your pride from the equation.
  • Leave your feelings at the door, this isn’t about your feelings or theirs, it’s about marrying the logical and creative sides of your brain to solve your problem. And feelings get in the way of accomplishing that!
  • Remove any preconceived notions or bias thinking.
  • Put yourself in the other person’s shoes so you can honestly see their point of view.
  • Find common ground that you can readily agree upon.
  • Ask lots of questions that are specific in nature, don’t be vague. Being vague creates fog and makes it even harder to see the end of the road.
  • Have a foundation of truth, but be willing to build additional properties on it, if that’s what the solution requires.

With my last point I’m not implying that you change your foundation for truth, however, what I am saying is that often times it’s as simple as establishing a healthy compromise.

Because not all compromise is terrible and for any healthy relationship to thrive both parties need to be willing to reach common ground which is what healthy compromise is and looks like.

“When you find no solution to a problem, it’s probably not a problem to be solved but rather a truth to be accepted.” Anonymous

This isn’t exhaustive and for clarity and full disclosure, I taught my daughter’s and helped them to develop these skills, at a very early age in life;

  • Critical thinking
  • Deductive reasoning

My motivation for teaching my daughters these specific life skills was to empower them. However, on a micro level I wanted to protect them from being taken advantage of by boys or men, as they grow older.

However, on a deeper level, these skills are invaluable tools for life and can be applied to any problem, experience or challenge anyone faces.

Final thoughts,

90% of our problems are self-inflicted and more often than not can be easily solved by changing the way we think.

By the way,

Often times people get their feelings confused with their gut instinct.

They’re not the same!

Our feelings involve our emotions,

While our gut instinct comes from knowing something deep within us, but we can’t yet see the bigger picture and aren’t yet able to place our finger on what’s explicitly wrong. But we know something’s amiss! That’s our gut instinct.

Just think about it.

“When you have a ‘solution thinking mindset’ – and choose to focus 80% of your thoughts/words on solutions – you will not only be heading more speedily to long-term success, but you will immediately feel better in the moment.” – Karen Salmansohn

Live Your Truth (Poem)

Imagine how beautifully free our world would be if everyone dared to speak and live their truth.

Imagine how bright everyone’s light, as the darkness gave way, because we chose to live our truth today.

It’s sad and painful, the darkness so many cling to, for fear of what others might think.

Never realizing, the light inside has been waiting their whole lifetime to shine.

But oh for the brave few who chose to speak and live their truth, now it’s they who light the way, leaving a spark of hope for the rest of us to hold on to.

Will you speak and live your truth today or die inside because you allowed the darkness to hide your true self?

By Bradford Lee Mace

In honor of my oldest daughter Eliana. For bravely choosing to live her truth.

To put this poem into context please continue reading and thank you.

Fear will suffocate it’s victim till nothing is left for them to hold onto.

And that’s how my daughter felt! My oldest daughter struggled deeply while searching for her own identify.

And the depression she suffered as a result, nearly took her life.

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, belief and convictions, BUT

As a parent watching my daughters struggle to find their way in this life,

I would prefer they embrace their own truth than to watch them live in the shadows of the fear of what others might think about them.

I don’t think there’s anything more painful than to watch a person being forced and bullied into living a lie their whole life.

Maybe I’m wrong, but I witnessed this happening first hand to my oldest daughter.

Just because a child of any kind is different doesn’t make them any less human as if they’re some kind of animal. Because they’re not!

Last checked, bieing different isn’t a crime!

We’re all different in our own unique way and none of us are perfect.

The truth is, we’re all perfectly imperfect by design and that’s the beauty we must see and embrace in one another,

Especially, if we want to live in peace with one another.

Love isn’t for everyone or is it?

Truth is like a piece of hard candy with a sour outer shell. It might cause you some discomfort in the beginning, and you might even want to spit it out, but don’t. Because once you’ve sucked on it long enough, you’ll begin tasting just how sweet the truth actually is on the inside. – Bradford Lee Mace

FOR MOST OF US this is how the truth often is when we hear it for the first time.

What love is and isn’t

Love is never just a feeling, as if that’s all there is.

Love isn’t just the words we speak.

Love at its core is an action we take, proving the love we say we have, by what we do.

Love is the choices we make, the time we give and the words we speak.

Love is what we say and don’t say.

Love is seen in how we honor and respect the one we say we love.

Love is never just a feeling by itself because love at its core is a choice that one makes in the form of a promise.

A promise is a commitment to take action, or another way to look at it is we’re giving our word to do or not to do something. A promise is a continued commitment to do something specific.

For example;

For better or worse

  • And yes, this means when you feel like it and don’t feel like it.

Till death do us part,

  • Which refers to a lifelong promise, choosing over and over again to love that person despite all else that may try to break your relationship apart.

True love chooses to love ONE over all the other possible choices in life.

True love, love’s in the face of having so many other choices, but chooses to love only one.

This love sees the treasure the other person has inside of them and gives their entire life pursuing that treasure till death separates them.

If we base our love on just a feeling which comes and goes like the wind blows, and you can’t make this kind of promise to love, then maybe you should just remain single and save everyone the heartbreak.

For the children

Our children need to see this kind of love and in fact they long to see it. At least that’s what my daughter’s have communicated to me and I don’t think they’re wrong for wanting it.

With exception to the following;

  • Mental abuse
  • Verbal abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Physical abuse
  • Spiritual abuse
  • Or any other form of oppression where you’re being suffocated as a human being.

No one should ever feel they need or have to stay in any abusive relationship. As a father I would NEVER allow, NEITHER would I ever support and in fact, I would do everything within my power to help my daughters escape from any kind of abusive relationship. Because they always deserve better!

Sadly, we live in a world where promise breakers and liars still exist, hence the divorce rate being as high as it is.

Nearly 50% of marriages end in divorce! And that number increases with remarriages, which tells me a lot of people failed to learn from their past and they love repeating history more than the person they remarried.

For those of us who have a tendency to want to fix broken people.

Here’s my advice; Stop trying to fix everyone and stop getting involved with broken people who have no intention of ever fixing themselves. People can lie with their words and they even will lie to us with their actions, but their behavioral patterns never lie. Be mindful of the whole person and you’ll be less likely to be taken advantage of.

Carelessness & Recklessness

Then there are the numerous perpetual broken relationships which people carelessly and recklessly get themselves into and out of. This is often the result of one-sided love and or a failure to communicate. More specifically one person is whole in that they’ve chosen to actually fix themselves and now they’re a better version of themselves, while the other person just talks a good game, but has no intention of fixing themselves because they don’t care. This person just tells you what you want to hear until you fall in love and then their mask begins to fall off and all you get in return are empty promises filled with meaningless words.

Narcissists and Sociopaths are not mythical creatures, they are real life monsters that devour their prey, like vampires sucking blood from their victims.

If you have no intention of fixing yourself, stop dating, it’s that simple. Why torture yourself, embrace the dark side and enjoy the night life while you can and stay out of relationships.

How can you love someone with ALL your heart when your heart isn’t right? Or if your heart is divided? Or if you’re still living in your past?

You can’t, until you fix yourself first.

The life of a sailboat

Can a ship sail if the captain refuses to pull up the anchor? Of course not! And that’s why someone living in the past can never fully live in the present. Love’s shore is waiting, but you’ll never get there until you first pull up your anchor and sail. By the way, sailboats only sails in one direction, forward never backwards, think about it.

Painting the picture

If you take two broken objects and put them in the same basket, whats the outcome? A basket full of broken pieces. Now, what happens when you try to put those two objects back together? It’s highly unlikely you’ll be able to put either one back together correctly. And that’s the problem with most relationships. They’re just a broken mess that can never be fixed.

Here’s another way to look at it,

You have two cups, one that put itself back together while the other is still in pieces. No matter how much you want or even try you’re never going to be able to put anything in that broken cup because it’s still broken. I know you want to try and fix them, so you begin to help put the broken cup back together, but there’s a problem, the broken cup lost some pieces, misplaced other pieces and forgot to buy the special glue that’s needed to put themselves back together. To make the things even worse, the broken cup forgot where to go and get the special glue, and unfortunately, your glue is no good because it’s the wrong glue and won’t work.

Can you see the problem?

What’s the definition of insanity?

Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results every time.

Why waste everyone’s time? Life’s too short for anyone to be wasting anyone’s time.

Seriously, no one’s getting younger here!

History only repeats itself because you’re not choosing to learn from it. It’s that simple!

It’s all lovey-dovey until someone gets their heart broken

The love I’m describing isn’t for everyone because if it was then everyone would be living and practicing it, BUT everyone isn’t and that’s why some are better off staying single.

The truth is, not everyone is cut out for being in a relationship, some people have the gift of perpetual singleness. If that’s you, embrace your gift and enjoy life.

Being single isn’t a curse either, although some might think it is.

In fact, choosing to be single is actually empowering, especially if you’re one who’s waiting to meet that special someone to share the rest of your life with. You don’t want to settle and who’s to say you can’t have some fun along the way. The truth is not everyone finds their soulmate.

But for those who long for the kind of love I’m talking about, read on.

This love is a love so powerful that the only thing that can break its power is death. That’s what happily ever after looks like!

I believe this love still exists, but it’s harder to find in today’s world and even though it’s difficult to find doesn’t mean you should give up on hope.

Except, maybe those who have the perpetual gift for being single. (Sarcasm)

Despite all our negative experiences, I still believe in this kind of love.

Final thoughts,

This love requires two who equally share the same heart, mind, soul and spirit. Anything short of this and your ship will never reach loves shore.

This isn’t love for the faint of heart, but a love meant for two equally brave warriors who will fight for their Love, even unto death because that’s what true love requires.

Just think about it.

A Vision Realized

“You must have a clear enough vision to create within you a strong enough work ethic to empower you to achieve your vision. Because a vision unrealized is just a dream that never had a chance to live, but for a dream to live and become a vision you have to give it hands and feet. In other words, get to work and make it happen.” – Bradford Lee Mace