Restoring thinking

T.S. Elliot wrote “we are distracted from distraction by distraction”. I have been inspired this summer by reading Margaret Wheatley’s book which is called So Far from Home. She writes “Our lives, relationships and politics are being shaped, predictably and inevitably by an eco-system of interruption technologies”.

Those technologies have also collapsed time. Faster is always assumed to be better. And I recognise myself that I can fall into the trap of judging my day purely by how many items have been ticked off my ‘to do’ list.

So how can we create space for reflection and critical thinking in order to face complex challenges?

Press ‘pause’

Taking time to think can be an unusual activity, but clear thinking, reflection and curiosity are all essential for us to develop. Within organisations the skills of critical thinking are essential for leadership, creating whole system thinking and for managing complex change.

Action learning provides the structure for reflection and develops the skills to enable critical thinking to happen. The provocative questions of peers can radically change thinking and open mindsets, enabling new solutions to emerge.

Action Learning Facilitator training offers the opportunity to create those skills in others too, so that time for reflection becomes a regular activity, developing the resourcefulness and resilience needed in challenging times.

A new leaf?

As we all return to work following the summer break, it’s the perfect opportunity to try a new approach to our work, to do things differently so that we can face the challenges that lie ahead.

Time for reflection and critical thinking brings surprising insight which leads to better decisions and actions that make a real difference on a personal and organisational level and may also have an impact on the world in which we live.

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