A Problem-free Life Would Be Boring

The solution to one problem is merely the creation of the next one. – Mark Manson(†)

Common thinking is that a life without problems would be idyllic. “Not a care in the world” is the operative phrase. Sitting on a beach, sipping Mai-Tai’s is another vision.

Even if it were possible, thanks, but no thanks.

Life is problem-solving. Every day, in a myriad of ways, we’re faced with a series of issues that call for some kind of resolution.

The issues aren’t always large. It could be a simple as what to do after running out of coffee filters (or – horrors! – coffee itself). It could be as personally monumental as figuring out where your next meal will come from.

It could be as socially critical as dealing with a new administration with which you have fundamental disagreements.

Regardless, life is full of problems.

A well-lived life is full of solutions. A well-lived life is a cycle of problem-solution-problem-solution. As the quote says, each solution is often itself the generation of a new and different problem – hopefully, a better one.

Often the only difference between a problem being painful or being powerful is a sense that we chose it, and that we are responsible. – Mark Manson(†)

Without problems to solve we don’t grow, we stagnate. That’s not for me. Accepting that life will always give me problems to solve, ways to grow, things to learn, and taking responsibility for the solutions I might choose, will lead me to a much more rewarding life.

That’s not to say sitting on a beach, sipping Mai-Tai’s wouldn’t be enjoyable. Periodically, perhaps. For a while.

But it’s not the life for me.

†) The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life by Mark Manson