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Success is a matter of Clear Thinking

By: Tony Gilpin

According to "Lateral Thinking, Six Think Hats and Masterthinker" author Edward de Bono, innate intelligence or IQ is not the same as the ability to think. Been naturally smart is not the same as clear thinking.

Clarity of thought is not a gift or natural inherited intelligence. It is, instead, a skill that can be practiced, refined and developed just like any other skill. One of the many ways available to show people how to think more effectively is by using an image of six hats. Each of them is a different color and equates to a question that will make your decision making more clear.

You can use these rainbow of hat colors :

White hats represent facts, figures and information of a dispassionate nature. You might visualize a scientist dressed in a while lab coat. Questions that fall under whites hats would include: "What facts are necessary for me to make an informed decision? Where and from whom can I acquire these answers to reach a conclusion?"

Red hats are more for emotions, feelings, hunches and intuition. Red hat questions generally fall into the following category: "How do I feel about this situation? What is my gut reaction to the answers I just received?

Black hats represent negative connotations, a sort of devil's advocate of the situation and events. By asking yourself the following questions, you can examine consequences of answers received: "What are the downside or risks of the proposed solutions to problems. What is the worst-case scenario?"

Then we have Yellow hats which symbolize optimism and constructive thinking. Yellow hats are all about opportunities and possibilities. Questions like "What are the advantages and probable positive outcomes of this situation? What would be the best outcome?"

Green hats are for fertile or creative thinking. Getting a new angle on the outcome are representations of green hats: "What completely fresh and innovative approach can I come up with in this situation. What creative ideas come to mind that I can use to see the problem in a new light?"

Blue hats are the control hats. It will allow you to review your thoughts and sum up what you've learned from what's going on and the answers you've come up with.

After you have clarified which color your hat currently is or a combination of hat colors to represent the way you are thinking, it will become simpler and quicker for you to make concrete decisions. How your thought processes operate will be reflected in your actions with others and how you cope with various situations. Changing your thinking cap's color will change your thinking, and none of these are carved in stone.

Like everything with human nature, thinking can be modified and different modes can be developed than what we're used to. As a result, we can decide to change, alter our primary hat color and thus take our view of life and how we deal with it totally flexible.

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Self development

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