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If the quality of your thinking is low, you will achieve low results. If the quality of your thinking is high, the resultant effect is a higher quality of life and results. The quality of your thinking determines the quality of achievements in your career, business and in life generally.
To achieve higher levels and quality of results, you’ve got to think at a higher level. Thinking at a higher level doesn’t come automatically. It takes deliberate action and requires focus. This requires that you build quality thinking time into your daily routine.
- You need to have a specific time set aside for uninterrupted, concentrated thinking. It could be 30 minutes or 40 or 60 minutes depending on you.
- Beforehand, you need to find, prepare and design high-value questions to think about before the actual session starts. The better the questions, the more understanding and robust the answers and possibilities would be.
The Secret of How to Think
When we are trapped or find ourselves unable to move ahead on a project or an assignment, we tend to believe it is because we do not have the right answer to the challenge or problem before us. On the surface that could be seen as the reason. But looking at it deeply it is NOT.
The reason does not lie in not having the right ANSWER, it lies in not ASKING the right QUESTIONS.
If the right question is asked, you will get the right answer/solution. If the wrong question is asked about any challenge or problem, you will NEVER arrive at the right answer.
Here is what ‘Keith J. Cunningham’ in his book, “The Road Less Stupid,” says:
“A problem is simply an unanswered question. Sadly, most unanswered questions remain unanswered because the question was never asked. If there are no possible solutions or available improvements to the situation, it is not a problem but rather a predicament.”
The challenges, problems you have in your career, business, etc. are unanswered questions. They remain unanswered because the right questions have not yet been asked.
How to Find The Right Questions to Ask?
Now, the question is, “how do you unmask the right unasked question?”
It is quite simple. It revolves around framing a problem as a question.
It is always a mistake to frame a problem as a statement. When you frame a problem as a statement it tricks your brain to think and believe that the situation is a fact (that does not need a solution) not a question that needs a solution.
To buttress the point, say you have a problem of low cash flow. You need to generate more revenue. That is a problem.
If you frame the problem as a statement such as “I need more money,” or “I don’t have enough money,” it won’t provide any insight on how to find a solution to the problem or to think of the possibility of generating more income. Framing the question that way gives it a tone of finality and not clarity on how to solve the problem.
If on the other hand, you frame the problem as a question like this, “how do I make more money so that I can buy or invest in properties?”
Or “how do I generate an additional 5.5 million per month in profits so that we can afford to expand our office capacity?”
Or “what business strategy should I use to rake in more income to pay my rent?”
Framing the problem thus, as a question, helps the mind to think and expand on the number of possible choices available. This is much better than framing the problem as a statement.
In addition to framing your problem as a question, you can also think about the following:
… How did it get this way?
… Why does it remain this way?
…. How can I improve the way it is?
Asking the right questions always has three (3) mutual characteristics:
- It provides insight on what the actual problem is that needs to be solved.
- It simplifies the problem and makes it solvable.
- It expands the number of available options to solve the problem or improve the situation.
A major point to take note of is that it is very smart having the right answers but is it much smarter having the right questions.
The point here is without the right questions, you won’t be able to get the right answers. So, spend more time to find the right questions or the unasked questions.
In conclusion, here are actions steps to take:
Set aside a specific time for concentration and uninterrupted thinking.
Secondly, find the right or the unasked questions to bring into your thinking time.
Finally, practice your uninterrupted thinking time judiciously.
Do not forget that the level of your thinking determines the level of your achievements. Think qualitatively in order to have great and impactful achievements in your career, business and life in general. “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.”
We look forward to hearing from you soon, about the significant growth you’ve experienced in your career and firm and in life generally.