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Given the increasing pace of change — driven mostly by technological innovations — and uncertainty, the axiomatic need to learn on a daily basis is self evident.

So, how can we learn best on a daily and continued basis?

The answer is straight forward: By developing the one and only skill we’ll ever need, namely, Critical Thinking. Thus, becoming Tropophilic!

Critical thinking is the only skill we’ll ever need because this skill encompasses every other skill you can think of, such as the following:

1. Open-Mindedness

Open-mindedness is, by definition, unlimited and it is the very first step toward critical thinking. The power of an open mind can be best appreciated when dealing with a narrow-minded individual.

2. Depth Of Thought

The ability to delve into unfathomable complexity of life itself mostly by asking “What if”?

3. Scope/Breadth Of Thought

The ability to encompass and envision viewpoints considered impossible. This requires reconciling scientific knowledge (i.e., Refined Knowledge) and ecological knowledge (i.e., Common Sense).

4. Clarity Of Thought

A clear sense of a higher purpose. This also requires reconciling refined knowledge and common sense in addition to a peaceful conscience.

5. Accuracy Of Thought

The ability to avoid errors or distortions of thought to approach a target at a macro level.

6. Precision Of Thought

The ability to hit a thought reliably and consistently at a micro level.

7. Consistency Of Thought

The ability to avoid cognitive dissonance, thus maintaining precision and accuracy of thought.

8. Relevance Of Thought

The ability to determine priorities and remain grounded and pragmatic. This also requires reconciling scientific knowledge and ecological knowledge.

9. Intention/Fairness Of Thought

The ability to not only exercise emotional intelligence, i.e., to manage positive and negative emotions in order to avoid biases and remain objective but, even more importantly, to maintain moral and ethical values and principles.

10. Inquisitiveness Of Thought

The ability to question in order to innovate ad infinitum, especially asking “What if”?

11. Plasticity Of Thought

The ability to be mentally pro-actively adaptive and tropophilic.

12. Ingenuity Of Thought

The ability to imagine the unimagined, i.e., to be creative and innovative ad infinitum!

13. Pragmatism Of Thought

The ability to maintain the objectivity of thoughts by reconciling refined knowledge and common sense.

14. Passion Of Thought

The strongest desire, courage, perseverance, and determination to exercise and implement your thoughts.

15. Intuitiveness Of Thought

The ability to instantly tap into the subconscious while reconciling refined knowledge and common sense.

16. Positiveness/Good Reasons Of Thought

The ability to maintain a cheerful mind on a continuous basis, i.e., positive attitude for a positive reason which is intimately linked to the trait #9, intention of thought.

17. Active Inference

The ability to minimize free energy in order to reduce the prediction error and surprise. Thus, thriving on uncertainty and change, i.e., becoming Tropophilic.

18. Premonition

The ability to foresee the future.

19. Emotional Intelligence or Emotional Quotient (EQ)

EQ is a fundamental part of critical because it is simply impossible to think naturally, let alone critically, if we are driven by either positive of negative emotions. The ability to manage and benefit from highly positive and/or negative emotions we are exposed to on a daily basis will reveal our true colours. In order to remain objective and avoid subjective biases, we must exercise our emotional intelligence despite of positive and/or negative circumstances.

Some people have argued that you also need these skills: time management, listening, asking for help, saying no, knowing went to keep quiet, getting healthy sleep, and taking action, but all these skills, and then some, are already part of the nineteen points above.

To The Health Of Your Critical Thinking Skill!

JC Wandemberg Ph.D.

President & Founder

Sustainable Systems International

About the author: Dr. Wandemberg is an international consultant, professor, and analyst of economic, environmental, social, managerial, marketing, and political issues. For the past 30 years Dr. Wandemberg has collaborated with corporations, communities, and organizations to integrate sustainability through self-transformation processes and Open Systems Design Principles, thus, catalyzing a Culture of Trust, Transparency, and Integrity.

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