Everything is Figureoutable

Addiction is a solvable problem. It’s not an easy problem. I solved it in my own life after a nearly 15 year fight. And I’ve been working on the problem beyond the single individual for over a decade. Nonetheless, I am still convinced it is a solvable problem. 

The pandemic has been the catalyst or closely related to a lot of personal and professional transformation. A change in my professional life was already underway in March 2020. I knew I was transitioning out of a role I’d held for 8 years to starting a new company related to the work I was doing. Starting a business and getting it out there is tough under normal circumstances, even for seasoned veterans. Doing so in the middle of a global pandemic is doubly challenging. 

But, we are figuring it out. 

The other day I was staring at the wall and thinking about a few issues and some decisions. I took a break, turned on a podcast, and heard the following lightening bolt of a statement from Maria Forleo:

“Nothing in life is that complicated if you roll up your sleeves, you get in there, and you do it. Everything in life is figureoutable

Everything is figureoutable. 

Love it. 

It's very close to a principle that already helps me operate day-to-day: 

"Everything in life is an equation; work the equation." (Steven Little, fitness instructor)

In other words, if you work the parts long enough, they will come together for an answer. 

When “everything is figureoutable” passed through my eardrums at just the right time, I got just the kick in the pants I needed. 

Of course, there are business decisions being made and actions being taken. But what is becoming more clear is my thinking around how we can and will solve addiction. 

The problem of addiction has to be figureoutable, right?

And no, recovery isn't the solution. The solution is a world where addiction has a difficult time existing and very few experience the hell it brings to the self, the soul, and our society. 

It seems that solving addiction requires at least three components: Connection. Capital. Choice.

Each of these components can be applied to both sides of the problem – preventing the onset of addiction, and helping individuals overcome addiction. 

Connection. We are all connected. Did you know that you make decisions all the time that are greatly -- and silently -- influenced by your friends and your friends' friends? Understanding how decisions and behaviors happen because of human or social connection can provide us with new ways to design solutions that promote health and prevent illness. 

Capital. Big solutions and change need both human and financial capital. We need a collective of smart people with the right amount of resources to design and deploy meaningful solutions.

Choice. Choices of all kinds can be architected for good or bad outcomes. The better choice architecture we build in our systems, products, and engagements can and will influence individual and collective change and improvement. 

This is just scratching the surface. In order to solve some of these big problems, we have to start somewhere and need to look at more indirect approaches. But, it’s all figureoutable if we put enough time and attention to it.


David Whitesock is a social entrepreneur, designing better addiction and mental health solutions. He is the founder at Commonly Well and architect of the Recovery Capital Index (RCI).

Learn more about the RCI.

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