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In order to apprehend a complex problem and solve it, it is necessary to be able to deal with four central aspects:
1) The openness of the boundaries of the problem.
2) The conjunction of its components without simplifying disjunctions.
3) The biunivocity of its elements
4) The inexistence of observers. The individual “managing it” is a part of the problem.
Who approaches complex problems in a natural way?
Childhood lives within a complex world. From birth on, children enter a world where reality exceeds their reasoning capacity and they need to learn in order to survive and grow.
The way they do so is very simple:
a) They act
b) They somehow elaborate their actions
c) They act again based on their elaborations.
This is the natural taxonomy to manage complex problems. Children follow these steps intuitively. Taxonomies are naturally respected by children. If you put skis on small children they just begin with “snow plowing” and not “slaloming”.
What happens with this intuitive way in adults?
Educated adults do not enter a new complex problem based on experiencing it first. Societies, parents and the educational system taught them to approach reality beginning with a rational thinking process. This is functional to everyday operational activities, but is dysfunctional to learning how to manage unknown complex problems.
A complex problem must be approached with an “action – reflection – action” process, which is absolutely counterintuitive for ordinary adults.
Why is “action-reflection-action” counterintuitive?
In the adaptation process humans have to face four natural fears that inhibit intuition:
1) The fear of ridicule: A persistent, abnormal, and unwarranted fear of being ridiculed or ridicule. It is the fear that hinders the beginning of any different or new activity.
2) The fear of failure: Fear of failure is the fear of self-criticism or the fear of being criticized by others. It is the fear of failure that hurts far more than the failure itself. Actually, it is the fear of not being sure what will happen.
3) The fear or rejection: It is an outcome of low self-esteem. It makes you feel that everyone in this world is superior to you and they can reject and avoid you for some reason or other.
4) The fear of success: The fear of success is a very unique issue that arises when you are genuinely creating change and moving forward. One of the core fears that arise from change is that success will lead to loneliness.
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