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9 - There is No Silver Bullet

Today I talk about silver bullet thinking, and how to overcome it. Silver bullet thinking is the idea that by overcoming one single issue, it will solve every other problem in your life. In reality, we should be attempting to incrementally fix hundreds of small issues to see real change in our everyday lives.

Hey folks, I'm Stephen Peterkins and this is episode 9 of The Peterkins Podcast.

We all have that one thing about us that we wish we could change. There's nothing wrong with self-improvement, but we tend to hold one particular obstacle in our lives as the sole reason for our suffering or misfortune. We assume that if only we were able to overcome this singular problem, our lives will finally be filled with the meaning and happiness that we're desperately seeking.

This doesn't just apply to our personal lives, many businesses (especially startups) fall into this line of thinking. If we could just get this one client, if we could just hire this one person, or if we could just build this killer product, all of our other issues would be solved and we would finally be running a successful company!

This style of thinking is normally called "silver bullet thinking". Just like in stories how the silver bullet is the only thing required to slay certain types of monsters, we also imagine that if we only just obtained this silver bullet we'd be able to slay the metaphorical monster in our life as well.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but there is not just one singular thing that you can change to fix all of your problems. We need to face reality when attempting to better our situations, and not create imaginary worlds where magical solutions solve everything. Acknowledging this means understanding that there are hundreds or even thousands of incremental improvements that are necessary to make real change. There is no quick fix available.

We should strive to be making one aspect of our life 50% better all the time. When we succeed at that, we can move to another aspect of our lives and make that 50% better, and so forth. Keeping these aspects focused will slowly start to show gains across our life as a whole, until finally we arrive at a better place. Again, there is no magical solution that can fix everything, but everything can be fixed eventually by focusing on one solution at a time.

If you've been a victim of silver bullet thinking, I'd encourage you to post a comment, and share how you were able to overcome it.

Thanks for listening, and I'll talk to you later.