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Friday, March 8, 2013

E. M. Hanley Shows A Different Perspective of Life's Problems Through New Book

by Cyrus Webb

All of us have for problems. What separates us is the way we handle them. This is something that Elizabeth "E. M." Hanley learned firsthand.

A research librarian by profession, she told me that it wasn't too long ago that situations in her life forced her to reevaluate who she was and how she was living. "I ran into a lot problems which made me take a look at my life," she told me. One way she dealt with her problems was by looking for information in books. Over 200 books later she came to an important epiphany. "I was amazed to find out how much power I had over my problems, and I just wasn't using it."

Hanley realized that when it came to problems she was approaching them entirely the wrong way. "I was letting them affect me when I didn't realize how much control I had over them ," she says. "I could affect them and get the outcome I wanted in my life."

The result of this new way of thinking is the bases for the book NO PROBLEM!. When I read it, it allowed me to reinforce the fact that we don't have to be defined or held captive by what we go through. This information in itself was liberating for me as it was for Hanley. "Problems aren't linked to happiness," she explained. "It's how you allow them to affect you." In her research for the book she was able to glean amazing examples and experiences from respected individuals who had addressed the issue of problem-solving. "I felt like a victim to a lot of my problems," Elizabeth explained. "I was letting them control me. What I have learned is that I have the power to turn things around."

She explains this way: "Life might not be fair, but we can be unfair to ourselves by when a problem comes along by making things worse. We handicap ourselves by not knowing the important information that we need that says I can do this. I can handle this."

It all comes to a decision we have to make. "I don't want to live like this," Elizabeth says she told herself. "I should know better."

That decision led her on a journey to gathering information that was easy to understand, including tips on problem solving. What are the four simple tips that guide you to solutions?

1. DEFINE: See it as it is, not worse than it is
2. OWN: Take control and feel the power
3. TRUTH: Face the truth to see solutions
4. BALANCE: Check the bigger picture

In our conversation Elizabeth reminded me of a basic truth. "We're always gong to have problems.," she says. "We have to accept it, deal with it and move on." She says that we have to look at problems as a "little glitch in the road" of our journey. "We forget about the big picture of our life," she says. It's important to remember that we have gotten through difficult times before and we can do it again.

Our words also play a large part in the way our life goes. "So many times we claim things that we don't have to," she says. "It's important to change the course of our lives just by the power of words. What's helpful is to ask questions in a positive light." This means that instead of saying how bad a situation is we should ask questions like "What can I learn from this problem? "What's good with this problem?" The way you talk with yourself is important to finding solutions, and that is the ultimate goal of any trial.

Through NO PROBLEM! Hanley is able to put in our hands the wisdom that we should know but have problems thinking of when the going gets rough. Now we have no excuse. On page 132 of the book she says this: "Each problem is sending you a message about your life. What is it? Find the value of every problem. Learning from a problem will increase your personal power. Write down what you an learn about yourself or your life from this problem. Do you need to be more forgiving, to be more understanding, to be more accepting, to change your attitude to make better choices?"

By answering these questions we can get to a place where like in class problems make us better, stronger and more equipped for what can come our way next.

To find out more about Elizabeth Hanley and her useful resource NO PROBLEM! visit

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