how to think clearly

3 Steps to Think Clearly and Creatively

The more we stress about our problems, the bigger they get.

Sometimes the best thing to do is let go of our problems.  Not to give up, but to let up – and make some “space.”

Yesterday I took the afternoon off.  Even though it was during the week I decided to go on a date with my wife.  No blackberries, hand held devices or computers.  No email.  Just the two of us hanging out for the afternoon; just like we used to when we first met.

It was such a great afternoon.  I forgot about all my problems.  I forgot about all my concerns and I forgot about my work.   That evening, 8 or so hours later I solved two of my biggest problems… one of which didn’t require any work on my part.  The other one came to me as a new idea.

How did I do it?  What’s my secret?

Here are the three steps to think more clearly and creatively:

Step 1: Think on Paper (30 Minutes)

There is a quote from one of the Rich Dad’s from the popular book Rich Dad, Poor Dad Book.  It goes,  ”Always think on paper.”

I’ve always loved this quote and lived this.  I have a white board in my office where I do all of my thinking.  I draw and doodle; I connect the dots.  I look to see how things flow together.  I cut and paste.  I use words and text to mold my ideas and explore my problems.

Once I’ve emptied my head I’m then ready to…

2. Mastermind (1 hour)

The phrase “two heads are better than one” is an understatement.  Masterminding is when you have two or more people brainstorming and working together to come up with new solutions to problems.  It’s also a great tool for generating new ideas.

My business partner and I have these mastermind sessions quite often.  We use these sessions to brainstorm ideas and bounce new concepts off each other. Before we start our mastermind sessions, we normally ask ourselves these 4 questions:

What is this meeting about?

What are we trying to achieve?

What are the challenges we want to overcome?

How will this help us? Our clients? Our business?

These are great questions to ask yourself when masterminding.  Just let the ideas flow and you’ll be surprised at how crazy and remarkable the solutions will be.

The last step is to…

3. Take a Mini-Vacation (2-6 hours)

Take a what?  Yes, a mini-vacation.

Decompress and disconnect.  This has helped me solve my biggest problems with the least amount of effort.

You’ve got to give your subconscious breathing room.  It’s part of letting go and trusting in yourself.  My best ideas are not the ones I get during a mastermind session or when I’m writing them out.  They come 2-48 hours after I’ve done my deep thinking or had a really good masterminding session.

So the trick is to be patient; to let go and relax.  The more relaxed you are the better.  That’s why I suggest taking a min-vacation; taking a nap, go for a walk in nature or socialize with friends.  Just give yourself a break.  The ideas will come.

Think clearly and more creatively by following these 3 steps.  You’ll be glad you did.

Steve is the creator of Freedom Education: Manifesting Your Desires Download Steve’s 7 Secrets of Rapid Transformation.

Don’t Forget To Follow PickTheBrain On Twitter!

Related Articles:

How To Increase Self Discipline

How To Motivate Yourself

  • http://lookingtobusiness.com Daniel M. Wood

    What most people don’t know is that our subconscious mind is working 24 hours/day on the things we dwell on the most. The problem is that our conscious mind often gets in the way.

    Taking a break and not thinking about the problem actively, gives the subconscious the chance to work on the problem undisturbed giving you that wonderful “ah-a” experience when it all of a sudden comes to you.

    Your advice about brain storming and thinking on paper are great ways to tap into that “super computer”.

    //Daniel

  • http://www.transformationalmotivation.com/ M. A. Tohami

    This is a universal law, “what we focus on expands”.

    What happens to a sheet of paper, if you focus sunlight on it through a lens?

    It burns.

    This is how problems burn our lives…when we put them at the center of our focus.

    That’s why we need to either let go of the problem for a while and “Take a Mini-Vacation” or think about SOLUTIONS.

    • Moncler Kids Clothing

      Our Moncler Kids Clothing online store supply Moncler jackets for customers with attractive discounts, Kids Moncler Coats is not can make you warm in the cold winter but also can make your baby more lovely
      Moncler Kids Jackets Fitted Puffer with Hood are selected with high quality and fashion styles, welcome to monclerkidsclothing.com now, really be worth to own our products, free shipping, fast delivery for you!

  • Pingback: Lumpuckeroo | 3 Steps to Think Clearly and Creatively | Overcoming Lumpuckeroo - Self Improvement

  • http://www.freedomeducation.ca Steve Martile

    Hey Daniel,

    Love the way you used “super computer” to describe the subconscious mind – that’s exactly what it is…. it’s an amazing problem solving tool.

    What really shocked me as I went through my own research is when I discovered that the subconscious is also responsible for at least 96% of our thoughts, perceptions and behaviors… almost everything that we think and do on a daily basis!!

  • http://www.bestihave.com Marion Youngblood

    Steve, Nice information and great advice.

    I especially like the mastermind session idea. I find that the very worst things happen to me when I keep everything inside my head and try to solve problems alone. Two heads are definitely better than one!

    I am going to encourage a mastermind session right after I return from my mini-vacation later today!

    Thanks!

  • http://www.cyworld.com/diesel Steve Kim

    This is a classic advice that has been mentioned in many of the great books.
    Napolean Hill considers forming a mastermind group one of the key elements of success in Think and Grow Rich.
    Taking a mini-vacation also reminded me of Brian Tracy who teaches us the concept of focusing on the solution of a problem and then letting it go altogether, confidently expecting the solution will come when the time is ready and it often does out of a blue!
    When we feel that we have done enough research and work into a problem, just let it go, relax and it shall come :)
    Thanks Steve for reminding of this amazing principle!

    Steve

  • http://hanofharmony.com The Vizier

    Hi Steve,

    This is a great article!

    I especially love the point about thinking on paper. It’s true that you think better once you get everything out of your head onto the paper. I don’t do it often enough and this is indeed a timely reminder.

    Well I guess I should go relax a little to clear up my head before I get back to thinking about the things I have to do.

    Thanks for the advice Steve!

  • http://www.reflectozone.wordpress.com Reflecto

    Hi Steve,
    I love this article. I especially connect with the taking a mini-vacation advice. I find that when I step away from problems and approach them later, I gain a fresh perspective and sometimes even get that eureka moment that may previously have eluded me. I also remind myself that I cannot solve everything at once so I simply do the best I can at that moment.

    Thanks Steve for a great article.

  • http://fithappyhealthy.com/blog Anita

    Hi Steve – good points. My favorite is #3 – to disconnect. Also – good points about the subconscious. To ‘feed’ it I usually make a point of asking the right question – even if the answer is unknown to me at the time. That really helps when I’m stuck.

    And – I thought you will enjoy this video from TED Talk of Elizabeth Gilbert on how she sees the creatinve genius, and how to summon it – http://www.ted.com/talks/elizabeth_gilbert_on_genius.html

  • Chris Clarke

    Good Day to all!
    The concept of a mini vacation is wonderful. We’ve all got to realize that the human brain is very powerful but in no way should it be compared to a mechanical device. Even heavy duty machines are susceptible to burn out.

    With taking breaks we are able to give ourselves time in order to consciously and subconsciously see problems from different angles and yes…maybe eureka!

    May you all reflect on something today that made you laugh like a child.

  • http://www.glimpsesindia.com Travel Agents India

    think clearly… create… increase your IQ… improve your life.

  • http://enlightr.com Craig Thomas

    Mastermind is a fantastic principle and very helpful. If I’m stuck, perfect thing to do in my opinion is ask someone, anyone, even if they have no idea in your field as it helps you formulate too.

  • http://www.motivation-and-self-improvement-guide.com/positive-thinking.html Carolyn Jolly

    Good article. I used to tell my sales team, “the time you spend away from this job is even more important than the time you spend doing it”. They were always shocked that I recognized the importance of rest and renewal.

  • blackhawks jersey

    It really a useful idea.I will have a tiral of this idea as soon as possible as have already frustrated by burberry dresses and burberry men for a long time.Thank you very much for your continously post of effective tips.It really do me a great favor.if you have more information about burberry online shop can you tell me and i also like hermes bags,my boyfriend want me to buy wholesale replica Handbags but i can’t find a shop that sell replica hermes,as i always want to be a burberry women before and i search burberry outlet online for a long time, but i only get the result of burberry purse,then i Walk into marketing and marketing center, to find hermes sale,and i find a good display of hermes Handbags and hermes birkin bags, my sister want me to buy new burberry but i only find replica burberry it really drive me crazy!you know, next month i will marry with my boyfriend and i want to look some tiffany co jewelry and tiffany engagement rings, i search tiffany outlet shop for a long time they are all replica tiffany, so if you find good tiffanys jewelry and pandora jewellery or pandora jewellery beads also cheap nfl jerseys or jersey supply and religion jeans, you can leave a email to me! thank you! Hermes Scarf Hermes Scarves burberry coats nike air max 2011white air maxnike griffey max burberry sweater burberry woolscarf true religions jeans true religion jeans outletbears jersey blackhawks jerseyken griffey shoes
    air griffey max
    ken griffey jr shoes
    air griffey max 2Nike Dunk SB HighNike Dunk SB Lowwhite dunksDunks For Women

  • http://www.cheap4nikeshoes.com cheap purses

    I dont know what to say. This blog is fantastic. Thats not really a really huge statement,

    but its all I could come up with after reading this. You know so much about this subject. So

    much so that you made me want to learn more about it. Your blog is my stepping stone, my

    friend. Thanks for the heads up on this subject.
    pls vist our web:cheap purses
    pls vist our web:cheap purses
    pls vist our web:cheap purses
    pls vist our web:cheap purses

  • moncker kids clothing

    Our Moncler Kids Clothing online store supply Moncler jackets for customers with attractive discounts, Kids Moncler Coats is not can make you warm in the cold winter but also can make your baby more lovely
    Moncler Kids Jackets Fitted Puffer with Hood are selected with high quality and fashion styles, welcome to monclerkidsclothing.com now, really be worth to own our products, free shipping, fast delivery for you!

  • pas cher lv sacs

    une des marques les plus connues d’articles de marque, Sac à main Louis Vuitton Pas Cher Toile Toile Damier Ebène Hanbags profiter d’une grande réputation et la popularité partout dans le monde d’aujourd’hui. Il a été considéré comme un signe d’identité, le statut social ainsi que le go?t de la mode. Art exquis et des styles uniques sont le caractère le plus frappant de Louis Vuitton. Bienvenue à notre sortie de Louis Vuitton sac en ligne pour choisir votre favoriate et abordable des Achater Sacs Louis Vuitton.plus connues d’articles de marque, Sac à main Louis Vuitton Pas Cher Toile Toile Damier Ebène Hanbags profiter d’une grande réputation et la popularité partout dans le monde d’aujourd’hui. Il a été considéré comme un signe d’identité, le statut social ainsi que le go?t de la mode. Art exquis et des styles uniques sont le caractère le plus frappant de Louis Vuitton. Bienvenue à notre sortie de Louis Vuitton sac en ligne pour choisir votre favoriate et abordable des Achater Sacs Louis Vuitton.

  • cheap okely sunglasses
  • Bob

    some very useful tips on how to clear your mind. appreciate it.
    kind donations