Insight into problem solving

September, 30, 2010

The three major components of thought are images, concepts, and language. Directed thinking is aimed at solving a particular problem or reaching a certain goal. Logical thinking which adheres to rules of reasoning is one method of accomplishing this. Logical thinking often takes the form of a series of statements, which, if accurate and combined correctly, lead to a logical conclusion.

Various factors can affect problem solving. Anxiety, anger, and frustration may make a problem more difficult to solve, or they may increase efficiency in working out a solution to a problem. The way you are used to perceiving certain situations as a result of experience can also affect the way the problem is approached.

Not all forms of problem solving take place by means of thought especially in the fields if invention and science, where a kind of thinking is often necessary that gets at the solution to a problem by a path that is different from purely directed thinking. This sort of thinking is called creative, is to some extent directed thinking. What is different about this kind of problem solving is insight, a seemingly arbitrary flash that presents out of the blue, in the form of a solution to the problem.

This type of thinking is explained in terms of inspiration. Here first all the necessary preparation for a new work is carried out but the solution is not in sight. This is followed by a period of incubation. Now the individual is not actively or consciously thinking about the problem. However in the subconscious mind the process of problem solving is going on. It takes you to the third stage of illumination, where the seemingly spontaneous appearance of the creative insight or solution is found. In the last stage verification, the solution is tested against the criteria of the problem.



Conflict within Self

September, 21, 2010

Conflicts arise when a person faces two incompatible demands, opportunities, needs, or goals. There is no complete solution to conflicts; the individual must either give up one of his goals, modify one or both, delay one, or learn to live with the fact that neither is fully satisfied.

The concept can be understood through an example; recently married women may want to pursue a career, but also wants to raise a family.

A rational person, she considers the alternatives. She could accept a job now and delay having children, or she could have children now and look for work when children start going to school. Alternatively, she could modify both goals by hiring a housekeeper and working part-time. Or she and her husband could share child-care duties. Here the solutions are numerous. This is approach-approach conflict.

The reverse of the dilemma is avoidance-avoidance conflict when a person is faced with two undesirable or threatening possibilities. When caught in such a situation most people try to escape the situation. If escape is impossible they will cope with the situation in a number of ways, depending on the severity of the conflict. The student who much chooses between studying something he finds terribly boring and flunking an exam will probably decide to study. But the choice is not always easy.

In approach avoidance conflicts an individual is both attracted and repelled by the same goal, are rarely so easily resolved. A football player recovering from an operation may want to return to his team, but knows he may limp for the rest of his life if he is injured again. Here the person will approach the goal until he reaches the point where the two gradients intersect. Afraid to go any closer, he will stop, fall back, approach again, continuing to vacillate until he is forced to make a decision or until the situation changes.



Mental flexibility in food management

September, 9, 2010

Mental flexibility determines ways of thinking and is thus directly connected with a person’s attitudes and philosophy of life. Mental flexibility, the attitude of readiness and willingness to face possible change, helps a person to see and plan ahead, and, what is more important, to adjust and control the plan as action takes place. This saves time.

Flexibility in planning is called for in many areas of food management. Situations are constantly arising that makes it necessary to change menu patterns and homemakers must be prepared to make substitutions when the need arises. This involves knowing what foods can be satisfactorily substituted from the standpoint of nutrition and cost as well as combining well with the rest of the menu.

Sometimes flexibility is needed in adjusting the method of food preparation to lower time costs. Within all homes, constant adjustments are being made as plans are being evolved or carried out. The flexible-minded and adaptable homemaker is able to reduce time and conserve energy through her ability to reshape or adjust plans as the work of the day goes forward.

Dovetailing is fitting together parts of an operation in such a way that the results will be unified and easy-moving whole. In solving problems in home-making, dovetailing parts of or whole operations as plans are made or work goes forward tends to reduce time and energy input and at the same time produces a smoother running home.

It may be used both in the purchasing and the preparation of foods. Dovetailing is purchasing means planning and buying in quantities that will be adequate for more than one or two meals; Dovetailing in preparation means getting larger quantities of certain foods ready, a portion of which will be used in one form one day and in a different form on a later day. Dovetailed meal-planning or menu-making can be used without sacrificing adequate variety to satisfy individual taste.