I’ve been playing with this phrase for some time. The Art of Fresh Thinking.
It takes me to an interesting place, one that invites non-judgemental exploration. Offering the possibilities of beautiful, expansive thought rather than just searching for the right answer.
I passionately believe we need better thinking. And to do this we need to release ourselves from the straightjacket of linear rationality or convergent focus, better suited to the industrial age.
If we only value thinking as a mechanical means to an end we will not grow our mind muscles. Einstein’s thought experiments enabled him to explore ideas that fundamentally shape our understanding of how the world works. Where might we go?
The Art of Fresh Thinking also suggests appreciation of dimensions that we certainly weren’t taught in school. Things like thinking as a relational activity. Or the power of hybrid thinking where boundaries become elastic and extraordinarily creative things happen, if we venture into the unknown.
What about how we bring the wider, outside world into our thinking? Where we breathe in influences, play with images and immerse our minds in the tantalisingly non-concrete realm of poetry. And release our thinking from monochrome into multicolour.
Is it safe? No, but it’s good (to grossly paraphrase C S Lewis…)
Unfortunately we’re often in such a hurry for the answer, we miss the beauty and fruitfulness of the process. And we sell ourselves short. Constantly.
I took this picture several days ago in the damp Welsh morning as I walked the dogs. Stepping down from the woods to the green path, these beautiful drops of water caught my eye.
Small but perfectly formed. Hanging precariously – brush too close and they’ll drop. Look closer and you’ll see the world upside down, drawing light from all around. Encased by nothing more than the surface tension between water and air.
What do you see?
Where does your thinking take you if you give yourself some space? Curiosity and imagination are all we need…