The problem you think you have is not the problem that you have. The problem you think you have is a symptom of the actual problem that you have.

Here’s an example of this: my friend, Ryan Chapman (who’s a CEO of a very successful tech company) was talking about how he’s had a bad back lately. He goes to the doctor and they start poking and prodding, they do an MRI and they don’t really see anything structurally wrong. But, they recommend surgery anyway. And Ryan’s like, well, if the problem you’re looking for isn’t actually there, let’s not solve it with this sort of drastic action. He ended up consulting with another friend of his (who I think is more of a chiropractor) who identified that the problem that Ryan was having with his back is actually a problem in his hips. So, once he solved the problem with his hips, his back got better.

So the problem he thought he had (a bad back) was not the problem he had. The bad back was a symptom of the problem he actually had, which was trouble with his hips. 

Let’s explore another example: The problem you think you have is I don’t have enough clients. The problem you think you have is I don’t have enough sales. The problem you think you have is I don’t have enough traffic to my website. The problem you think you have is, I don’t have enough money.,

But what’s the actual problem you have? The actual problem you have is I haven’t asked anybody to buy today or this week or this month. I haven’t actually made a clear offer. The problem I actually have is I don’t have enough confidence in my own work to talk to people clearly about it.

So, nobody really knows what I do. The problem I actually have is: I let that one discouraging thing that one person said one time, stay in my brain and inhibit me. And now I’m not taking the steps forward that I need to. The problem I actually have is: my imagination makes up a story that says I can’t be successful. Or if I’m successful something bad will happen. Therefore, I don’t take the actions that I need to to get whatever result I want. 

Does this make sense? 

The problem you think you have is no one’s taking out the trash. The actual problem you have is you don’t have a system that lets the person whose job it is to take out the trash, know that it’s time to take out the trash. So, figure out the true problem and you’ll be able to solve the additional ones.