Applying Critical Thinking Skills

Applying Critical Thinking Skills-64
We often spend time with friends, sharing opinions without challenge, and it can be startling when someone actually calls us out on those opinions.Forced to explain our thought process, we may realise our argument wasn’t that sound after all.

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In the same way a coach looks at a recording of a game to identify his team’s strengths and weaknesses, use this exercise to identify your successful actions that day, as well as the scenarios that didn’t turn out as well as you hoped. Did you do something contrary to your own belief system?

Ask yourself a series of questions about those actions. Take the extra time to really think about your answers.

While intuition can be a valuable skill in the workplace, most employers would prefer you excel in critical thinking and problem solving.

So, what makes someone a critical thinker, exactly?

Many articles have been written about common misconceptions about a whole range of subjects, so you should always take the time to verify any ‘facts’ you base your decisions or arguments on. Critical thinkers also consider an author’s agenda, anything from a political affiliation to a product to sell.

The trick of researching is to find reliable information. Think about the last time you conversed with someone who asked you a lot of detailed questions and made you uncomfortable.Making an immediate effort to understand the opposing point of view can help keep you from becoming defensive and escalating the disagreement.The compassionate approach won’t necessarily lead to complete harmony, but an open mind allows you to examine all the information and, hopefully, find common ground.It’s the ability to look at issues objectively and effectively, without letting bias or emotions cloud your judgement.It’s not an easy task, but critical thinking improves your communication with others, helps you solve problems in the best interests of everyone involved, and allows you to see a clearer path to success and advancement in your career.The good news is you can begin right away, so read on to learn how to develop your critical thinking skills.The first step in developing your critical thinking skills is to set aside time to evaluate your daily choices and decisions.The ability to understand others’ emotions and skilfully negotiate with them is considered a valuable skill to potential employers.Becoming a critical thinker in highly charged situations needn't be wasted on Twitter flame wars; it’s extremely useful in making a sale to a difficult client, keeping an unhappy customer on board or even convincing your boss to use your idea for a new product line instead of theirs.The first step is to look for the logic in an opponent’s argument.Focus on the critical thinking skills you apply to your own decisions and examine their motivations, evidence and reasoning.

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