The question is not if I ever find it hard to deal with a problem. The key word is ‘when’. I found that it is alright when I struggle with a problem, even though I am the breakthrough companion that demystifies trauma and crises.

Wrestling with a problem is normal in research, studying and daily living. This struggle is caused by dealing with a new question or the resources are insufficient to jump to a quick fix. Quick fixes usually make problems worse.

My recipe for facings challenges is rather simple.

Let me explain:

I write the problem down on a piece of paper – like a problem statement. Many problems are so complicated that the issues can fill a paragraph.

My next step is to take that long complicate sentence and break it up. This helps me to deal with one issue at a time. To get to the main problem that I can look at, I list the problems and give them numbers according to their importance. Now I have a priority list.

With the priority list in hand, I take a different colour pen to help me get to the core issues. A red pen is very effective for this purpose. This means looking at each item on my list and drawing a bold line through every problem that is not my responsibility.

Core issues that contribute to ineffective problem-solving abilities are flaws in the system at the workplace or in society. However, my struggle can be intensified by my own lack of discipline or ineffective habits like procrastination.

I find that my list usually shrinks to a manageable size when I remove the stuff that is beyond my ability or responsibility to solve. These are usually emotionally loaded side issues and worries without substance.  Taking items off my priority list doesn’t mean that I don’t care, but that it means that I care enough to tackle important issues so that I have enough energy to support others.

Once I identified the main problem, it helps to put the problem in other words. By this time the picture of what should and can be done is clear.

Sometimes people are not ready to put their shoulder to the wheel to get a problem out of their way and they need a bit of help on the journey to wellbeing and wholeness. The problem and their unwellness may be linked in a specific way and their need a little nudge to change. There is no shame in asking for help and guidance in these situations.


  1. Write down the problems.
  2. Get rid of side issues.
  3. Prioritize the main problem.
  4. Take responsibility for what you are responsible for.
  5. Ask for help when you need assistance.

I am the breakthrough companion that demystifies trauma and crises. You can make an in-person consultation or online appointment on


If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

James 1:5 NIV

Afrikaanse weergawe.