How to Develop Critical Thinking Skills.

The authentic life is one governed by truth and the freedom to express who you truly are without reservation. You are no longer burdened with the facade of political correctness. To be truly authentic, a person must have  a strong sense of who you are. Your happiness,success and self worth are all established on your own terms. In order to do this , one must have strong critical thinking skills. These skills assist us in establishing our authentic identity. We each possess an ego. The word has been tied to being arrogant, but this isn’t necessarily true. Our egos can be helpful to us. It helps us to consciously connect with others . This connection might be superficial, but, nevertheless, useful. Critical thinking has been described as the art of using reason to analyze ideas and dig deeper in order to get to our true potential. Critical thinking isn’t about thinking more or thinking harder; it’s about thinking better. I have identified  several strategies that can possibly help you to develop stronger critical thinking skills:

Begin to Question Your Assumptions

What do you assume about different types of people? Do you have prejudices? Where do they come from? Are they based on fact or  lies? We each potentially make assumptions about numerous things, situations and people all of the time. In many cases , these assumptions are made without us realizing it. Many have been passed down to us without any true authority as a reference. It is as if we are on automatic pilot. In order to grow in are critical thinking, we must practice being mindful of our habitual thought processes.

We are each complex beings. No one deserves to be put in a category starting with yourself. Practice taking a moment to recognize your assumptions . Track down the origin of it. Afterwards, determine if that point of view serves you or not. If it doesn’t, make a conscientious decision to develop a different one . Ideally, both your thoughts and habits should serve you.

Empathize With Others

As the saying goes,”Put yourself in other peoples’ shoes”. Each of us has our own perspective about our experiences. We each come from a “different place”. There are numerous factors that influence us in one way or the other. Part of being a critical thinker is realizing that not everyone thinks like you do and that’s okay. We are each on our own unique journey. You don’t have to agree with someone in order to empathize with them. Simply making the effort to understand someone’s point of view brings you that much closer to connecting with them. Allow others to be themselves without judgement. Putting  yourself in their shoes helps you to develop a broader perspective reminding you that it’s not always about you. Each life is important. Each matters equally.

Evaluate Your Options

When faced with challenging situations, consider all of your options. Learn to brainstorm. Think of all possible scenarios starting from best case to worse case. Try to think outside the box. It is easy to pigeon hole ourselves based on routine. In most cases, you will realize that you have more options than you might have realized initially. Remember that every problem has a solution.

Critical thinking is crucial for self realization. Every day you are “tearing” yourself away from that “sheep mentality”. You are beginning to tap into a bottomless reservoir of ideas. This is necessary in order to have the ultimate human experience. You begin to appreciate life as it is as well as your place in it. Critical thinking helps you to pay attention to what is most important in life. Your experiences become fuller and richer. Life takes on a whole new meaning. Nothing is taken for granted. Decisions become clearer and we begin to truly live life on purpose. Until next time…

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