that when we go to take an "x" out of the equation, whatever we take out, must, when multiplied back into the equation, make each of the terms go back to what they were, originally (don't worry if this sounds confusing - you'll understand in a minute, what I'm meaning). Okay, so, look at the expression. See how the lowest "x" in the equation is the "x" for the term (6x)? Well, that means that we can only take 1 "x" out of the equation. If we were to take more than that, when we multiplied the "x's" outside of the brackets back into the original expression, we would end up with that "x" in the (6x) being raised to a much higher power, which is NOT the original equation that we have, here. Okay, so now that we can see that a 3 and an "x" are in common for EACH term in this expression. We need to factor out (or take out of the expression, put the expression inside of parentheses, and then put the 3 and the "x" outside of the parentheses) the 3 and the "x" from the expression. So, here's the what the setup looks like: 3x( ) Inside of those brackets, we're going to put our NEW expression, which will now have 1 fewer 3 and 1 fewer "x" for EACH term in the equation (because we took a 3 and an "x" out of the equation). Now for the next step . . . . .