What will be my Wife’s Best Surgery Option: using Option Solving?

What will be my Wife’s Best Surgery Option: using Option Solving?

Over recent months my wife has been consulting with a specialist to determine how to overcome some ligament damage in her lower left leg. She experienced some excessive leg swelling and cramping of her toes several months previously. Following an additional MRI and other consultations, it came down to deciding on her best option relative to certain considerations. She was experiencing too much discomfort and inconvenience by not doing anything.

When we got to the surgeon’s office, we nudged him into making a clear cut proposal based upon the several options that he put forward. So our question was put as follows: “What is my wife’s best toe-leg surgery option, considering she wants to put the discomfort behind her, lose minimum time away from her practice, have her life inconvenienced as little as possible, wants recovery time to be short, and minimize the surgical procedures?” There were other considerations but these seemed to be the most important ones; which were around 50% of the total – try not to make these more than 4 or 5.

Once the question was agreed, we now had to generate two “bookends”  for the purpose of framing any subsequent range of options. These bookends would denote extreme options, least likely to be pursued, so as to initiate a number of more practical options. The two bookends we came up with for her situation, as a “Yin” and “Yang” combination, were as follows: “Leave things as they are” at one end and “Complete foot and leg ligament realignment” at the other. If you take a look at our Latest Example, you will see why neither were likely to be chosen.

Now that these bookends were set in place, we had a framework for the surgeon to propose a range of options. Her surgeon then began describing my wife’s various options. The given  “pictogram” in our Latest Example shows her six options, bearing in mind with this decision technique it’s important to come up with at least five; so as to flush out a good range of alternatives. By producing a pictogram, it gives our intuition a much better chance to help us; since it responds much better to pictures rather than words.

I then encouraged my wife to sleep on those options and when she woke the following morning decide which might be her best bet. Being a veterinary surgeon herself, it gave her the extra insight to consider these possibilities. One that caught my eye was: “Large toe surgery only”…Option C… but the choice was to be hers, as it was her body… again, see our Latest Example. What option would you have chosen in her shoes?

I’ll find out from her soon enough. Once she’s taken the decision, helped by her/our tremendous intuitive capabilities, she will then work out a practical approach with her surgeon.

If you have an example of your own, please share it with this blogger, through the COMMENTS area.  Thanks Option Solving. (NOTE: Next posting in 2 weeks: “On a personal note – How could we best celebrate our XX wedding anniversary?” Let’s have your COMMENTS or go to peter@ ileadershipsolutions.com to connect with the blogger. Also consider buying the book: “Smart Decisions: Goodbye Problems, Hello Options.”)


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