Thinking is very costly for our body. When we become focused and think we spend 20-25% of all our energy that is exactly why our body doesn’t want to think. That is why we spend almost 95% of our day doing habitual, algorithmic actions.
This is very useful of course because we would go crazy if we thought about every step we made, every sound we heard or every word we said. Nevertheless it is only in the process of thinking and learning that our skills and knowledge expands. Therefore our thinking habits are very important to us because they should be serving us not controlling us.
First step to improving your thinking is to know yourself. Agatha Christie was thinking when she washed dishes, Seth Godin thinks in the shower. The helpful trick is to do some effortless mechanical work, which doesn’t take your focus but keeps your body in constant movement.
I like to think when I jog and when I fly somewhere (I have to figure out how to do that more). Also smells, sounds, colours, feelings use anything that stimulates you. If you do not know yet what that is, try different things and stick to the ones you found useful.
Here is the way to approach any difficult task to solve:
1 Do your research
Let’s take something as simple as chair. Did you know that it was and still is in some countries a sign of power rather than just a piece of furniture, hence the word Chairman? Did you know that the electric chair in Florida is called “Old Sparky”? Here is the link to see the largest chair in the world that is 12-foot tall. This research lets you gather the well-rounded knowledge about subjects and the more perspectives you have the easier it is for you to find the most appropriate answer.
2 Have lots of solutions
Most of us were taught in schools that there is one and only one usually most obvious solution to a problem. That is a Grand Lie. For example 2+2=4 might work in maths equation but two rabbits plus two rabbits will give much more than four rabbits:) When solving a problem do not stop on first solution but go until you find 30-40 or at least ten.
3 Save energy to communicate your idea
We are social creatures and it is not enough to just solve a problem. We have to be able to explain our findings and that is where the art of communication is vital. We must use metaphors, similes and references in order to share the product of our thoughts. If we want to have a greater effect we must not only share the information but the excitement and feelings that we have gone through so the person we share it with will be attached to our exploration emotionally as well as intellectually.
“Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.”- Albert Einstein