If it’s a problem for you, it’s most likely a problem for someone else. If it’s a problem for someone else, it’s most likely a problem for many people. If it’s a problem for many people, and you can effectively solve it, then it’s an opportunity.
Problems give you a very clear pathway for creating value. By specifically defining what is wrong, you get specific definitions of what can make it right.
How do you find the opportunity that’s connected to the problem? Think of it this way: the reason it’s a problem is because it is preventing something valuable from happening. So ask yourself — what would happen if the problem were not present? Answer that, and you’ll find the opportunity.
If you focus on the situation as a problem, you’ll fight it. That tends to close your mind to the possibilities for effective action. If you focus on the situation as an opportunity, you’ll embrace it. As soon as you do that, your mind begins to deliver great ideas for creating real value.
No one likes a hopeless situation. When you see things as hopeless, you avert your eyes. You turn away. You seek to think about other things. It’s just natural. Opportunity, on the other hand, is very attractive. When there’s opportunity nearby, you jump up and stand on the nearest table to get a better view. You pay attention. You’re eager to get involved.
How do you transform problems into opportunities? Just choose to change your perspective. Then, once you’ve discarded the problem and latched on to the opportunity, you’ll have the motivation necessary to transform that opportunity into real and lasting achievement.