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The Power of Deep Thinking: Essence of Creativity

Life Is Simply a Series of Present Moments
Here we are informed that the past is simply all the present moments that have gone by. Tolle posits that the only important time is the present, for which we think about the least. Furthermore, the present is simply future present moments waiting to go by.
Stages of Deep Thinking
Before we look at strategies you can use to become a deep thinker, let's briefly look at the stages of deep thinking known as the Three Levels of Thought. 5
  • Level 1: Lower Order Thinking. The individual is not reflective, has a low to mixed skill level, and relies solely on gut intuition.
  • Level 2: Higher Order Thinking. The individual is selective on what to reflect on, has a high skill level, yet lacks critical thinking vocabulary.
  • Level 3: Highest Order Thinking. The individual is explicitly reflective, has the highest skill level, and routinely uses critical thinking tools.

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Strength Through Awareness
The Hurting Of The Ego

Strategies to Become a Deep Thinker

To enter into the Highest Order Thinking, try the following strategies.

Increase Self-Awareness by Thinking About Thinking

Imagine you could become aware of how you learn. We know that we must have a baseline of previous knowledge about something to use Metacognition. Think of your Intelligence as what you think and Metacognition as how you think. Let's look at a series of questions you can ask yourself by using the Elements of Thought.6
  • Purpose. What am I trying to accomplish?
  • Questions: What question am I raising or addressing? Am I considering the complexities in the question?
  • Information: What information am I using to get to my conclusion.
  • Inferences: How did I reach this conclusion? Is there another way to interpret the information?
  • Concepts: What is the main idea? Can I explain this idea?
  • Assumptions: What am I taking for granted?
  • Implications: If someone accepted my position, what would the implications be?
  • Points of View. From what point of view am I looking at this issue? Is there another point of view I should consider?

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Story: Perfection is a Habit

Challenge Current Learning Methods Through Meta-Questions

Meta-Questioning is higher order questions we can use to explore ideas and problems. Here are some examples.
  • Why did it happen?
  • Why was it true?
  • How does X relate to Y?
  • Why is reasoning based on X instead of Y?
  • Are there other possibilities?
Let's look at a practical example.
  • When you say: "I can't do this." Change this to: "What specifically can I not do?"
  • You say: "I can't exercise." Then ask: "What is stopping me?"
  • You say: "I don't have time." Now ask yourself: "What needs to happen for me to start exercising?"
  • You discover: "What time wasters can I eliminate in order to create more time to exercise?"
  • Then imagine how you could start exercising: "If I could exercise, how would I do it?"

View the World Through Different Lens

Here is a technique you can use to foster a deeper understanding of a problem—Four Ways of Seeing:
  • How does X view itself?
  • How does Y view itself?
  • How does X view Y?
  • How does Y view X?

Try to apply the technique like this: suppose we are in the United States looking at a foreign country. First, draw four boxes, then list the questions. Second, start answering the questions.

  • In box #1 ask: "How do we see the United States?"
  • Box #2: "How does China see themselves?"
  • Box #3: "How does China see the United States?"
  • Box #4: "How do you see them?"

Thought Experiments

One last technique you can use to become a deep thinker —Thought Experiments. This is a device of the imagination used to investigate the nature of just about anything. 7 Thought Experiments seek to learn about reality through thinking:
  • Visualize a situation and set it up in your imagination.
  • Let it run or carry out some type of operation.
  • See what happens.
  • Draw a conclusion.
The team at Stanford describes this using the following example: Since the time of Lucretius, we've learned how to conceptualize space so that it is both finite and unbounded. Let's see how this Thought Experiment can work.
  • Imagine a circle, which is a one-dimensional space.
  • As we move around, there is no edge, but it is nevertheless finite.
  • What can you conclude? The universe might be a three-dimensional version of this topology.

Think Deep, and You Will Think Creatively

Thinking deep will change how you think, feel, and view the world. When you understand this concept, you will start to think beyond simple beliefs.
"When the root is Deep… There is no reason to fear the wind."
Deep Thinking will change how you think, feel, and view the world. When you understand this concept, you will start to think beyond simple beliefs.
By applying all the skills mentioned in this article, you will be able to think deeper and explore more possibilities. Read Full Article

Dr. Jamie Schwandt is an American author, statistics professor, TV show host, motivational speaker, lean six sigma master black belt, and a major in the United States Army. Full Bio