Severe Problems

These problems may be identified by the following characteristics:

■ require immediate solutions

■ may call for the involvement of others who have more expertise than you

■ result in increasingly drastic consequences the longer they remain unsolved

For example, a break in your house's plumbing is a severe problem. Water will continue to leak, or perhaps, gush out until the break is fixed. The water can damage everything it comes in contact with, including hardwood floors, carpeting, furniture, and walls. Unless you are a plumber, you will need to call a professional to solve the problem immediately. Delays can result in a more difficult plumbing issue and also costly water damage repairs. You might even need to replace flooring or other items if the break is not fixed quickly.

Some minor problems can become severe if not solved immediately. For example, a campfire in the woods that is difficult to put out may take a great deal of time and effort to extinguish. But if it is not put out, it could start a major forest fire (severe problem).

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