It’s complicated!

In Creativity, Insight, Projects

That may be most unusual Facebook relationship Status but it’s also reflective of most people’s lives, businesses and projects.

What do people say: You don’t understand this problemIt’s complicated.  And to me that always seems more reflective of how the person is seeing it, rather than the problem itself.

Most people tackle seemingly complicated or complex problems with getting analytical, looking in the past, the old, poking around what doesn’t work, hoping the answer is somewhere hidden in there – but never is – and the consequence is getting ever more stuck, and the problem often worsens.  Well, it would, wouldn’t it?  If I was poking around my car trying to fix it, without fully understanding the system then more likely I’d create more problems than solve them.

When actually the solution to any complex problem is always found by looking in the opposite direction: By getting curious and looking for the new, the fresh, the spaces, the simplicity . That’s where solutions are always found.

Here’s why: any complex system runs on simple principles. The more complex the system, the simpler the operating principles.  Here are a few examples:

  • Computers run on binary, ones and zeros
  • Germs cause infection
  • Gravity holds the solar system together and apart

Humans are no different.  We are complex systems but run on incredibly simple principles, that apply to all 7 Billion of us.  We all think differently because we have free will.  However, how we all think is identical, and this is very simple, not complicated.

Have you ever wondered why Professor Stephen Hawking isn’t looking for the most complicated theory of the universe.  No. He’s looking for the simple unifying theory of the universe.

I suggest that when you get stuck in a problem or project that’s going horribly messy, and find yourself or others saying it’s complicated, this is rather a consequence of how everyone is seeing it at that moment.  And there is no solution is to be found there, only stuck-ness and messy-ness.

So stop it! Look for simplicity. Get Curious.  Look for the spaces, the new, the fresh.  That’s always where the solution is to be found.  Always.


The Ready Steady Coach Programme starts on 6th July and there are 4 places remaining.  If you’re feeling It’s complicated and stuck, then it’s probably for you.  Over just 7 weeks, and by mixing your unique ingredients, we co-create what matters most to you.  Details here

1 Comment

  1. “Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex… It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.”
    ―Albert Einstein

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