Here is a powerful mini guide to test solutions to problems. Works for individuals, groups, nations. Having identified the problem you as individual, group or nation want to solve – and making sure it really IS your problem (no good saying “The problem is that Margaret doesn’t understand the offside rule”) – run any solution that you feel you have identified through the following questions…
1/ Does your solution begin with “I”/”We”/Name of your nation or group? If not, start again. The solution cannot be a statement of someone else doing something.
2/ Make sure that there is nothing in your solution that involves doing something to someone else. E.g. “I will make/show/persuade/inveigle/bomb/seduce XXXX …..”. If your solution was of this sort, start again.
3/ Eliminate any consideration of “reality” or what other players are doing. E.g. if your solution starts “Well, in a perfect world I would…” or anything else similar, you have cheated on item 1, so start again.
4/Check that your solution is not something that you were already doing. (This will get the same results as before)
5/ Having identified your possible solution, state how you will know when the problem is solved. State this in the positive and be specific. E.g. “There will be an end to hostilities between my country and XXXX” or “I will wake every day with a smile”