Musings of the Mind

Simplicity in a Complex Universe

Happy 2018, everyone!

Typically, people (myself included) often seek new resolutions to adhere to at the beginning of each new year. This year, I struggled to find one that felt right. So many ideas swimming around in my head, that needed sorting out.

A situation arose recently, at work, that caused me to change my perspective a bit when it comes to how I approach the different puzzles that present themselves in life. A software issue, that was approached from the perspective of being so difficult and time-consuming to figure out, ended up being the simplest of things to solve.  All those involved had a good laugh in the end, in spite of ourselves.

But it got me thinking..

It seems, the world we live in has become so complex, that I for one, have found myself subconsciously adapted my thinking, over the years, to address everything that comes up in a much more complex way to meet it. On the surface, this kind of thought-process adaptation might appear to make sense. Yet, when one looks at each individual situation that comes up in one’s daily life…only a handful of them are actually of a complex nature. Most of them turn out to be really quite simple. (Statistically, this theory could be applied to the life of any one individual.)

This general, complex problem-solving behavior seems to have shifted from being a seemingly necessary, environmental adaptation in how we think, to quite frankly…a habit.

Have we, as a society, really lost the ability to discern between a complex puzzle and a simple one?

We are constantly bombarded by puzzles to be solved, on a daily basis. That’s just life. Yet recently, (especially in the last year or so) we have been presented with issues, on a global scale, that truly require immediate sorting out. We are reminded of these issues constantly, very rarely being allowed a break to just breathe and refresh ourselves. General stress and frustration ensues.

For me, I realize that a much more efficient behavioral adaptation is available. The first step is to be self-aware and present in each moment. The second, allow calm and clarity to be my starting points. (Not an entirely easy task, but it is possible with a little effort). From this frame of mind will come simple and rational reactions to each individual puzzle that I happen upon throughout the day. The question will be posed, “In actuality, is this a complex problem or a simple one?” Once determined, I can proceed to work out the puzzle without imposing any unnecessary stress or frustration upon myself.

Once this new “habit” is adopted and utilized for a fair amount of time, I believe that the world will begin to feel far less complex and the puzzles of life will feel far more manageable and solvable than they do now. They will begin to feel lighter and more easily carried.

I have decided that this shall be my New Year’s resolution. I feel good about it.

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this and if it might be a good resolution for you as well. I’d love to hear from you.

Jen

 

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