079: 5 Ways to Create Productive Thinking Times [Podcast]

The most successful people I know spend time to think. Like us, they are busy, have families and responsibilities, so they have to find ways to force thinking time into their schedule. Why? They know success is tied to thinking and action. Action can be easy, but thinking about what action to take, now that is the key. As one person suggested to me on thinking time, if you are not thinking you are not leading, you are only following. And followers are average.

My son David in his “thinking time”

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Why You Need a Thinking Time

“Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won’t come in.” — Alan Alda

With all the inputs coming at you on a daily basis, you need time to process the information and do something active. Your ability to think and reason is what makes you different from a robot. Robots just respond to commands and stimuli.  Don’t be a robot – THINK.

“Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.” — Albert Einstein

Thinking Hints

  1. Schedule a regular thinking time
  2. Find a place to think
  3. Put away distractions
  4. Use tools that help you be more creative
    • Mindmaps (I like Xmind for a software version)
    • Paper and pen (bank paper – not ruled)
    • Whiteboard
  5. Set a wrap-up time
    • Process the thoughts into something that captures
    • Save documents, mindmaps, etc.
    • Put in calendar or schedule
    • Make notes – like a journal – of the key thoughts

Download my “Getting Started” guide to help you have more productive thinking times.

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Question: What do you do to have a productive thinking time? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

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