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Think Like a Scientist: How to Solve Everyday Problems

Systematic approach

Most people jump straight from finding a problem to attempting to solve it.

Having a systematic approach to how you deal with problems, as opposed to just going by gut and feelings, can make a big difference in how you creatively find answers to your obstacles.

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Practical ways to use First Principles Thinking
  • If you’re starting a business, use first principles to build a product or service that’s fundamentally better than the competition.
  • If your day is too busy, first principles thinking could help you get everything done in less time and with less stress.
  • If you’re trying to get healthier, building from the first principles will help you build a routine that works for you rather than struggling with diets and exercises you hate.
Albert Einstein

"If I had an hour to solve a problem and my life depended on the solution, I would spend the first 55 minute..."

Albert Einstein
First Principles Thinking
We normally use existing methodologies and analogies to solve problems, which is essentially short-cut thinking.
Engaging in 'First Principles Thinking' makes us discard existing knowledge, and get down to the essentials, exploring on our own and questioning everything. This uncharted terrain takes us to the absolute truth which we call the First Principle. When we understand the core of the problem, we can build creative and unique solutions.
    Using The First Principles Thinking

    The First Principles Thinking can be applied in our daily life:

    • Starting a business requires first principles thinking to build a fundamentally better product or service.
    • On a busy day, first principles thinking makes us do what's essential while not being bogged down with time constraints.
    • Applying the first principles toward good health will make us feel considerably better than obeying some diet or exercise routine that we hate.
    Not reaching your goals

    Take the goal you didn’t achieve and try a different approach. Doing the same thing over and over to achieve your goal is the definition of insanity.

    Your heroes miss their goals too. What makes them stand out is that they don’t give up. The fun of goal-setting is knowing that you’ll fail.

    Being criticized

    You can’t please everybody that you meet in life.

    Critics are not all bad. You can learn things about yourself from them too. The solution is to learn from criticism, not be afraid of it.

    Messing up your career

    See career challenges for what they are: an opportunity to try something different

    If your career never got messed up, then you’d probably stay in your comfort-zone for your entire life and never try something different.