Advertising
Advertising

These Are The 10 Thinking Skills Of Successful People Which Make Them Different

These Are The 10 Thinking Skills Of Successful People Which Make Them Different

Have you ever wondered what the thinking skills are that separate normal people from successful people? Here are 10 thinking skills of successful people which make them different.

Positive thinking

Successful people realize that their mentality can affect all aspects of their life, including success. Researchers have found that positive thinking opens people up to developing new skills, which can have a compounding effect among happy people who repeat this process. For example, if you start a habit of running for enjoyment and then do well in a marathon, you’ll take that happiness to fuel learning how to rock climb (and then take that success to move on to something else, and so on). Positive thinking can also have numerous health benefits: People who practice positive thinking have been shown to have increased life spans, lower rates of depression, greater resistance to colds and disease, and better coping skills during stressful periods.

Utilize risk-oriented thinking

Highly successful leaders think big and dream bigger than most. When you learn how to push the envelope and dare to go where no one else has even looked yet, you’ll be admired as a risk taker, someone who dares to gamble–and because you dare more, you’ll have more.

Advertising

Inference Thinking

Having the ability to understand and recognize what elements you will need in order to determine an accurate conclusion or hypothesis, from the information you have at your disposal.

Picture yourself as a business manager; you are looking at the latest sales forecast and you see sales have decreased. It’s important for you to be able to understand what additional information you may need in order to determine why that happened, including identifying internal issues, external competition or even economic conditions. The ability to understand the information you already have and determine what you may still need to find the best solution, is an important skill for you to have no matter what career field you are in.

Harness focused thinking

Focused thinking shuts out interruptions and interference, allowing you to concentrate with clarity. When you can focus your thinking, you are able to bring clarity to challenges, targets, and results.

Advertising

Analytical thinking

Analytical intelligence involves the conscious direction of our mental processes to find a thoughtful solution to a problem. It is the ability to overcome obstacles to find a solution. Being analytically intelligent is having the ability to solve problems effectively.

Engage in inquisitive thinking. Successful leaders spend their time questioning everything they know and everything they don’t know. When you question, you gain knowledge, and when you gain knowledge, you have impact. To be impactful, you to have to question what everyone else is taking for granted. And that alone can give you a leg up on innovation and creativity.

Creative thinking

Creative intelligence is the ability to come up with new ideas. With creative intelligence, a person can generate innovative solutions to solve problems.

Advertising

In simple words, way of looking at problems or situations from a fresh perspective that suggests unorthodox solutions (which may look unsettling at first). Creative thinking can be stimulated both by an unstructured process such as brainstorming, and by a structured process such as lateral thinking.

Reflective thinking

Take the time to reflect before you act, listen before you speak, understand before you respond, and engage your compassion before you react. When you take the time to reflect, it gives perspective. It allows you the bandwidth to see what is truly going on without being emotionally charged. Reflective thinking enables you to distance yourself, so you can see things with a new pair of eyes.

Shared thinking

Collaborative thinkers like to hear what other people are thinking so they can expand their own ideas. As much as we like to think we know it all, the best kind of thinking–the kind that brings the greatest return–is not done solo but is shared.

Advertising

Strategic thinking

Strategic thinkers can simplify the difficult, prepare for uncertainties, and reduce the margin of errors–all because they have a plan. Strategic thinking makes you a great planner, which is how you move easily from where you are today to where you want to be tomorrow.

Explore big-picture thinking

Big-picture thinkers are always ready to see things that other people cannot see; they are able to size up a situation and take all the variables into account. Once you can connect dots like no one else, you’ll always be prepared to seize an opportunity when the time is right.

Featured photo credit: http://nos.twnsnd.co/ via nos.twnsnd.co

More by this author

Save Money Money-Saving Tips From Billionaires That Everyone Should Know Thinking These Are The 10 Thinking Skills Of Successful People Which Make Them Different

Trending in Productivity

1 The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain) 2 What to Do When Bored at Work (And Why You Feel Bored Actually) 3 6 Effective Ways to Enhance Your Problem Solving Skills 4 How to Concentrate and Focus Better to Boost Productivity 5 15 Productive Things to Do When Bored (So Time Is Not Wasted)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on July 17, 2019

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

What happens in our heads when we set goals?

Apparently a lot more than you’d think.

Goal setting isn’t quite so simple as deciding on the things you’d like to accomplish and working towards them.

According to the research of psychologists, neurologists, and other scientists, setting a goal invests ourselves into the target as if we’d already accomplished it. That is, by setting something as a goal, however small or large, however near or far in the future, a part of our brain believes that desired outcome is an essential part of who we are – setting up the conditions that drive us to work towards the goals to fulfill the brain’s self-image.

Apparently, the brain cannot distinguish between things we want and things we have. Neurologically, then, our brains treat the failure to achieve our goal the same way as it treats the loss of a valued possession. And up until the moment, the goal is achieved, we have failed to achieve it, setting up a constant tension that the brain seeks to resolve.

Advertising

Ideally, this tension is resolved by driving us towards accomplishment. In many cases, though, the brain simply responds to the loss, causing us to feel fear, anxiety, even anguish, depending on the value of the as-yet-unattained goal.

Love, Loss, Dopamine, and Our Dreams

The brains functions are carried out by a stew of chemicals called neurotransmitters. You’ve probably heard of serotonin, which plays a key role in our emotional life – most of the effective anti-depressant medications on the market are serotonin reuptake inhibitors, meaning they regulate serotonin levels in the brain leading to more stable moods.

Somewhat less well-known is another neurotransmitter, dopamine. Among other things, dopamine acts as a motivator, creating a sensation of pleasure when the brain is stimulated by achievement. Dopamine is also involved in maintaining attention – some forms of ADHD are linked to irregular responses to dopamine.[1]

So dopamine plays a key role in keeping us focused on our goals and motivating us to attain them, rewarding our attention and achievement by elevating our mood. That is, we feel good when we work towards our goals.

Dopamine is related to wanting – to desire. The attainment of the object of our desire releases dopamine into our brains and we feel good. Conversely, the frustration of our desires starves us of dopamine, causing anxiety and fear.

Advertising

One of the greatest desires is romantic love – the long-lasting, “till death do us part” kind. It’s no surprise, then, that romantic love is sustained, at least in part, through the constant flow of dopamine released in the presence – real or imagined – of our true love. Loss of romantic love cuts off that supply of dopamine, which is why it feels like you’re dying – your brain responds by triggering all sorts of anxiety-related responses.

Herein lies obsession, as we go to ever-increasing lengths in search of that dopamine reward. Stalking specialists warn against any kind of contact with a stalker, positive or negative, because any response at all triggers that reward mechanism. If you let the phone ring 50 times and finally pick up on the 51st ring to tell your stalker off, your stalker gets his or her reward, and learns that all s/he has to do is wait for the phone to ring 51 times.

Romantic love isn’t the only kind of desire that can create this kind of dopamine addiction, though – as Captain Ahab (from Moby Dick) knew well, any suitably important goal can become an obsession once the mind has established ownership.

The Neurology of Ownership

Ownership turns out to be about a lot more than just legal rights. When we own something, we invest a part of ourselves into it – it becomes an extension of ourselves.

In a famous experiment at Cornell University, researchers gave students school logo coffee mugs, and then offered to trade them chocolate bars for the mugs. Very few were willing to make the trade, no matter how much they professed to like chocolate. Big deal, right? Maybe they just really liked those mugs![2]

Advertising

But when they reversed the experiment, handing out chocolate and then offering to trade mugs for the candy, they found that now, few students were all that interested in the mugs. Apparently the key thing about the mugs or the chocolate wasn’t whether students valued whatever they had in their possession, but simply that they had it in their possession.

This phenomenon is called the “endowment effect”. In a nutshell, the endowment effect occurs when we take ownership of an object (or idea, or person); in becoming “ours” it becomes integrated with our sense of identity, making us reluctant to part with it (losing it is seen as a loss, which triggers that dopamine shut-off I discussed above).

Interestingly, researchers have found that the endowment effect doesn’t require actual ownership or even possession to come into play. In fact, it’s enough to have a reasonable expectation of future possession for us to start thinking of something as a part of us – as jilted lovers, gambling losers, and 7-year olds denied a toy at the store have all experienced.

The Upshot for Goal-Setters

So what does all this mean for would-be achievers?

On one hand, it’s a warning against setting unreasonable goals. The bigger the potential for positive growth a goal has, the more anxiety and stress your brain is going to create around it’s non-achievement.

Advertising

It also suggests that the common wisdom to limit your goals to a small number of reasonable, attainable objectives is good advice. The more goals you have, the more ends your brain thinks it “owns” and therefore the more grief and fear the absence of those ends is going to cause you.

On a more positive note, the fact that the brain rewards our attentiveness by releasing dopamine means that our brain is working with us to direct us to achievement. Paying attention to your goals feels good, encouraging us to spend more time doing it. This may be why outcome visualization — a favorite technique of self-help gurus involving imagining yourself having completed your objectives — has such a poor track record in clinical studies. It effectively tricks our brain into rewarding us for achieving our goals even though we haven’t done it yet!

But ultimately, our brain wants us to achieve our goals, so that it’s a sense of who we are that can be fulfilled. And that’s pretty good news!

More About Goals Setting

Featured photo credit: Alexa Williams via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next