I have created a very basic Mind Map to explore the potential of a simple idea called Shortcut to Answer I hope it gets you thinking and considering possibilities. I feel that perhaps what we consider to be complex problems are made more complex through endless analysis and the adding of yet more complications.

Most problems have an obvious answer, even if it takes time to work through a series of stages to get there. Simplicity gets you to the answer by the direct route. It is then a question of creating the how of the answer; and focusing on the solution rather than the problem.

An example might be starvation.

Shortcut to answer food.

Obvious.

Yet how?

What about –

Create sustainable food sources; build greenhouses, ship soil in, grow foods, establish ongoing projects, and get the community trained in growing foods.

Maintaining the simplicity, chunk each step; example it water is a problem: build reservoirs. In this technological age we ought to be able to grow food anywhere! Man has contemplated space stations and may even do it, so surely we can grow food on a planet that is here and helping us? Starvation simply does not need to exist. The quickest of Mind Maps could start the ball rolling and then the 5W1H format can come in to discover the how.

Here is an example:

A second example of how Shortcut to Answer might work is the Rainforests. I was considering CO2, the greenhouse effect, and the Rainforests and it prompted a Rainforests Mind Map. However, back a stage, it only needed a quick Mind Map to get to the answer:

Here, working from the answer, which the planet has supplied us namely trees, I branched out to consider what would bring the answer into being. Trees create oxygen to combat CO2 and in my opinion that is direct action to tackle a problem head-on and it is something that is achievable. Cutting down emissions etc are all wonderful methods, yet the idea of planting trees on a mass scale to me, is like grabbing a giant tennis racket and whacking the ball back!

It can be all too easy to focus on the problem rather than the solution. That keeps the problem alive and keeps stirring a pot of analytical soup. To proceed through a jungle of negatives, which are saying you cant, it wont work and but takes courage and ignorance yet in a good way!

Ok. So my ideas may not all be entirely practical, yet the focus is on the answer. Rather than expanding on the problem (soup stirring) shortcut to answer expands on the solution (replacing solu with ac action) It is about entertaining possibilities that encourage greater, wider and better thinking which in turn uncovers results and progress.

If you were to ask for a machine that could sit there all day, almost never break down and keep churning oxygen out, you would essentially design a tree yet, we cant build a tree.

We can plant them though!

And the same goes for ideas.

I hope this Blog Post has got you thinking; and maybe Shortcut to answer can help you. I certainly feel that finding answers is about focusing on the solutions rather than the problems. If you have any feedback you are very welcome to leave your comments below.

Additional resources of interest:

Check out a short 4 minute video on TED.com by Kamal Meattle

How to grow your own fresh air

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