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Ladymia69's avatar

What are some good ways to jolt yourself into a different way of thinking?

Asked by Ladymia69 (6881points) March 17th, 2011

You ever just spin around about 20 times as a kid, and then when your head stopped hurting, saw the world with different eyes? That’s what I am talking about.

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21 Answers

jaytkay's avatar

Go camping for a week. Live without running water, electricity, phones, TV, computers. Don’t take a lot of food so you will have to fish, hunt or gather.

gondwanalon's avatar

Join the Army.
Don’t eat anything for 3 days.
Quit a bad habit (tobacco, alcohol).
Join a gym and use it every day.
Run a marathon.

Ladymia69's avatar

@jaytkay Goodone. Reminds me of my long-term goal to go down to Peru and drink Ayahuasca.

Ladymia69's avatar

@gondwanalon GA, although most of those just sound like excellent ways to punish oneself.

wundayatta's avatar

One of the best ways to do this is to meet with another person (or persons) who are interested in breaking out of the mold, and start solving problems. It really helps if people know nothing about the problem, because then they can ask questions someone familiar with the issue would never ask.

Another way to do this is to set up rules that restrict you in one way or another, and force yourself to solve the problem within those rules. It always helps to work with others in these exercises. Groups know more than individuals do.

One important rule is that you can’t say “no.” Whatever someone comes up with, you have to build on it, not deny it. In fact, this is a crucial rule for any kind of creativity exercise. If one “no” slips through, then you’re done for. You’re going to go back to what is safe; to what you know.

Of course, I don’t know what yourself into a different way of thinking. My answers are helpful for those who are trying to make something.

If you want to look at the world in a different way, then you might take a workshop in something completely different what what you usually do. Learn to play harmonica. Learn to construct a house. Go spelunking. Take a meditation retreat. Work on a play.

I’m sure I could go on and on ad nauseam. But I’ll spare you. I think you get the idea.

Earthgirl's avatar

To start to have a new way of thinking you need to let go of old preconceptions. Try to look at the world without judging and evaluating. Without sizing people up. Simply observe.

jaytkay's avatar

@wundayatta One of the best ways to do this is to meet with another person (or persons) who are interested in breaking out of the mold, and start solving problems.

There was a Fluther thread a while ago , something like The Weekly Improving Myself Thread.

I was not a participant but I thought it was a really interesting use of Fluther. People were going out on a limb and exposing themselves and making public commitments.

Anybody recall more? Does that still go on?

janbb's avatar

It was the progress thread. It was started by Jeruba and the text was something like ‘Some progress is better than no progress…” Several of us reported in on our week’s goals, accomplishments and disappointments. It lasted – in several iterations – well over a year but has died out in the past six months or so.

jaytkay's avatar

has died out in the past six months or so

Progress died? I feel that way about the world at large. But on Fluther?


janbb's avatar

@jaytkay Maybe we all have achieved our goals and need no more progress? :-)

jaytkay's avatar

Maybe we all have achieved our goals and need no more progress? :-)

OK, I can sleep soundly tonight.

Austinlad's avatar

Visit a non-English speaking foreign country like China or Germany.

Summum's avatar

I once went into the mountains set up a tent site and spend time just contemplating life in general. Sit in deep meditation and do it with a purpose and a reason for the meditation. Have one single question in mind that you want answered and spend 3 or 4 days searching deep within for the answer to that question. Be open to everything around you and concentrate on the question. Open your mind to the Universe and really listen with your being not just your body.

cockswain's avatar

Read a book or get high.

MissA's avatar


Some years ago, I would have suggested changing your ‘or’ to ‘and’. hmmmm

faye's avatar

@janbb @jaytkay Progress is still going on, in 11 or 12th incarnation!

janbb's avatar

As @Austinlad suggests, I find traveling in a foreign country really shakes up my assumptions and rigidities.

cockswain's avatar

@MissA Some books are too hard to understand that way.

Summum's avatar

Repitition is the key to changing ones view so that you experience it several times and come up with the best solution. Reading a book several times helps you see things that you didn’t the first few times you read it.

MissA's avatar


I agree with you in theory…and, have read a few books more than once. However, I shall not live long enough to read all that’s on my reading list one time.

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