A more powerful perspective
Visual thinking expert and author Dave Gray, in his excellent book Gamestorming, explains how making your thoughts tangible can free you from mental clutter and enable you to focus on generating solutions to the challenge at hand:
"Imagine yourself playing a game of chess while blindfolded. It’s possible to hold the positions of all the pieces in your mind’s eye for a time – and most chess masters can do it for an entire game – but it’s much easier to have the pieces displayed on the board in front of you. The shape and color of each piece and its position relative to the board and to the other pieces contains a rich set of information that can help you make better decisions about the game."
In much the same way, you can use visual thinking to treat your thoughts as ‘artifacts’ – tangible, portable thought objects that may include sticky notes, index cards, elements of a diagram or topics within a mind map. Rearranging them enables you to play “What if?” with information and ideas, in much the same way that a chess player ponders his potential next moves by analyzing the chess board in front of him. Best of all, visual thinking uses both sides of your brain – both the logical left hemisphere and the more creative right hemisphere – giving you greater mental horsepower to generate productive solutions for yourself and the people you serve. This powerful mindset is one that anyone can develop, and it’s an awesome differentiator for you and your unique creative style.
Visual thinking can help you to:
- See patterns and connections that others aren’t even aware of
- Envision new possibilities and ideas
- Display the quality of your thinking
- Dissect complex problems, view their components and discern their underlying causes
- Reach clarity more quickly on complex challenges
- Make better informed decisions
- Communicate your ideas in a high-impact, memorable manner to the key people you are trying to influence
- Build consensus with others
All of these are critical needs today. Why not become the ‘go-to’ expert on visual thinking in your world?