Creative and critical thinking using the 'Let It Flow' method
Deep clear thinking is more of a rarity these day. That full focus, deep-in-thought, reflective thinking where your subconcious helps find you the answers.
We are always busy doing, busy getting distracted, busy doing simple repeat tasks;
But are we even doing the right things?
How can we reduce the distractions and 'swirl'?
Are there smarter of ways of doing things to give us more time for critical thinking.
Thinking, as a stand along skill, can be greatly enhanced for the individual and even ore important, for the team, with some techniques, more conscious practice and using the evolving technology around you.
How to unleash the powerful full force of your brain ?
How to get yourself in the right 'frame of mind' for different problem solving tasks?
How to train your brain to really switch on, focus and go beyond its normal limits?
Most of your own brain power is relative to your overall lifestyle habits and conditions - sleep / exercise / healthy food - to power your body and mind.
In terms of freeing up time for pure thinking, automate or eliminate basic repetitive tasks. Know when to slow down and think deep vs thinking quickly for less important tasks.
Practice zooming in and zooming out your mind - like a camera lense - to ensure you break down bigger tasks into simpler steps.
When you ready for deep thinking, as you will read more below, focus your full attention, on the specific problem or topic to open up and unleash your brains potential.
Meditation or reflecting on a topic with your full force is the key to unlocking unlimited ideas and answers. We call it the 'Let it Flow' method and its simple and super effective for all types of creative and critical thinking.
How to unleash our full brain capacity?
Zoom in and zoom out conciously with your mind
Focus slowly and deeply on one things at a time
Team thinking is another area that is particularly important for companies to coordinate powerful progress and smarter, more productive action.
We have all sat in endless meetings (F2F or Online) where the talking drags on, the topics jump around and the contributions are not always purely constructive.
Introducing our own model of thinking:
The LET IT FLOW Method of Critical Creative Thinking helps individuals and particularly teams of people 'be better'.
Free open minded critical thinking can solve many problems. But why do we often go around in circles and not unveil all the possibilities, using all the assessment criteria for better creative thinking and for better decision making. For most managers, leading big projects or big teams is a relatively lonely place. Your ultimate decisions lead the pack, and the tasks and challenges are coming at you fast.
Sure, an awesome team of experienced and professional people will to some degree run itself, but there are some simple things to help make the team even more effective.
Before The Meeting...
1) REDUCE THE LOAD OF THE BASICS
Automate common tasks (systems)
Set predefined ways for handling different issues (process)
Set the guidelines for how we do things (models)
Focus on the variances / trends / insight conclusions - we need information, not just data.
2) PREEMPT WHAT IF SCENARIOS
Map out different solutions for the different problems
If you are ready for anything, you can relax and focus on the now
3) USE ALL THE TECHNOLOGY
There is an ever evolving level of tools to use, embrace them to their fullest. Most companies only use a fraction of the software they pay for, or shy away from new approaches.
All great software needs to still be set for purpose, configured for that specific business, in that specific way - it still needs to be thought up and configured by someone and then used by everyone.
Just like only a fraction of the great formulas / models / concepts we learn at school or university ever get through to day to day business - why is that?
In The Meeting...
1) HAVE A FACILITATOR OR CHAIR TO KEEP THINGS ON TRACK
HELP EVERYONE ZOOM IN - ZOOM OUT
We thrive on starting simple then making things complicated - why is that?
Its important the the leader of the meeting takes everyone with them:
explain the method of how the meeting will run
make sure everyone knows when the thinking will move fast/deep vs slow/deep
stay on one topic at a time
break down the topic as the thinking discussion evolves
have time to link the topics, as needed
be clear of the scope of the topic (we hear and think things differently)
reminding everyone of the overall vision/purpose of what we are all here for
repeat the key points - repeat the key points
cross-check / validate / check / theorise / trial
summarise / conclude
A good architect, interior designer or industrial designer knows the beauty is in what’s taken away or left out. Always searching for the right balance and simplicity.
2) HAVE A TIGHT vs WIDE RANGE OF PEOPLE IN THE ROOM
Depending on the topic, you only need the right mix of people for the problem. You don't need to invite everyone just because of the org chart - you invite only what is needed.
3) MOVE THROUGH THE THINKING STEPS TOGETHER
GET ON, STAY ON AND MOVE ON THE SAME PAGE
Get everyone’s ideas and input early, but even more importantly, get everyone involved in the process of improvements.
Give a time limit to each persons contribution.
Get rid of the speed bumps and roadblocks early -be clear on ‘all in’ commitment to the cause.
Go through the Assessment Criteria / Thinking Angle together
Do we all understand the scope of what we are talking/thinking about?
Do we all understand the nature of the problem?
Do we all understand the end result we want?
Positives / Negatives / Our Capability / Risks / Rewards etc
Give freedom to think - very openly.
Give freedom to fail.
Give freedom to the wild ideas. As usually one persons ideas becomes a stepping stone towards the final idea.
Be conscious of the time constraints, but let things marinate - give it time to soak - to unveil itself.
Keep your minds in a calm steady state for maximum effectiveness.
Remember, in some other creative areas they say that the concept already exists, it just needs the right conditions to come out.
6 THINKING HATS
One of our favourite Thinking Methods, particularly for groups is the famously effective and simple
is the De Bono 6 THINKING HATS. Try it for your next team meeting and see the results!
EDWARD DE BONO - Creative Thinking / 6 Hats
The ground breaking techniques for creative thinking.
""You can analyse the past, but you need to design the future."