The Magic Roundabout – a metaphor for solving a problem

When my friend came up with a brilliant way of thinking through a problem, I asked her if she would put her thoughts in writing so that I could share them with you all. It’s a fantastic way of approaching whatever life throws at us. The ability to visualise what she’s talking about really helps to. So, over to Libby….

“I have a
particular friend who I absolutely love to bits.   We share life together, raise children
together and pound for miles
along streets, canal towpaths and even motorway verges training for some
bonkers race or running event which will knacker our knees and mean our
Achilles will never be the same again. 

love her for lots of reasons.   One of the best things about her is where she
“comes off the roundabout!”  Back up I hear
you cry; loving your friends and sharing life with them, all good, but what’s
all this talk of roundabouts? Let me explain. 

I get stuck with a problem.  These
problems can be small or large; dealing with teenagers, navigating a mid life
crisis (that’s mine and not my husband’s – why should we miss out?), dealing
with loss and bereavement or processing a health scare.  I will mention this to my friend, she will muse
on the problem and then often come out with a totally different view point and
perspective on my situation.  It’s like
we’ve come to the same roundabout, I have taken the first turning on the left but she
has stayed on the roundabout and come off at the third exit.  Same problem, same roundabout, different
exit, different perspectives, new solution! 
It is so very liberating! 

when I have a problem I like to go back to my roundabout and think myself off
at a different exit and a different solution. 
The analogies are many and varied; staying on the roundabout until you
find an exit you can handle, going down an exit you’d rather not go down but, because
of circumstances, you have to go there and learn to enjoy the view anyway,
they are endless.  The message remains
the same; if the solution you find for a problem doesn’t sit right, it’s rarely
irreversible.  Go back to the magic
roundabout and find a new exit.”   



  1. Melanie Wall
    August 18, 2017 / 11:31 am

    This is brilliant. Thank you so much for sharing – it's exactly what I need right now. Mel xx

    • StyleGuile
      August 18, 2017 / 8:01 pm

      Hi Mel, thank you so much for your comment, which I have passed on to Libby. I hope that you have come off at a better turning, or that you are heading back to the roundabout or even still going around it until you feel ready to come off! x

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