Category: Critical Thinking

Reimagine? Imagine? What do these words mean?

As a leader, I heard the use of the word “reimage” by our technology department. They used this to describe their summer work. Each computer in our district would be “reimaged” with new software, updates, and clean-up to be ready for the new school year. So is this what people are talking about when they say they want to “reimagine” something?

I do not think we can “reimagine” without first “imagine.” Imagination is the beginning. When we “imagine,” we form a mental image of something or believe the unreal is authentic, like a ghost. My favorite is Casper, but the rest of my family enjoys all of that scary stuff!

Can you imagine? This phrase expresses a surprise or poses a question in a song to stretch your thinking in questioning what you believe. John Lennon is legendary for Imagine!

I can only imagine. What does this mean, besides one of my favorite songs by Mercy Me? It seems to be the lesson I am learning is imagination is the most important in creative thinking and spiritual hope.

Imagination is where creativity lives. Individuals who can imagine can create worlds for others to escape to as they work their wonders. Walt Disney World is my favorite example. Did you know employees are called “Imagineers”? These are the illustrators, architects, engineers, lighting designers, show writers, and graphics designers. These individuals create, work, and others help with construction and more work to make the magic. There is physical work to making imagination come true.

So to “reimagine” something, you have to imagine first. When you imagine, it does not become absolute until someone makes it, does the work, creates it, and it becomes something. None of this tells us if it is good, bad, better, horrible, or excellent. We just imagined it.

All of this talk can be so confusing for everyone trying to follow this jargon. Dressing language up to be something different does not make it different when the foundation is needed to begin.

Today I will imagine all of those who read my posts will help me in being the solution daily as we “reimagine” a world where we live together as one. Let’s work to make it happen!

Choose Possibility

It is always exciting to me to begin a new book. I read something every day. I started reading The Art of Possibility by Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander.

As I began the journey with them, it did not take long to identify the pages were full of thoughts, perspectives, and words engaging with passion for orchestrating a deeper look sure to inspire!

In the first few pages, the thought that circumstances in our life that seem to prevent us from doing things in our daily life may only appear to stop us based on our assumptions. “Draw a different frame around the same set of circumstances, and new pathways come into view. Find the right framework and extraordinary accomplishments becomes an everyday experience.”-The Art of Possibility

This book provides different approaches and practices to help all of us bring the possibility to life. The authors share the famous dot puzzle. Try it out for yourself. The puzzle asks you to join all nine dots with four straight lines, without taking pen or pencil from the paper.

So the greatest lesson of the nine-dot problem is to “think outside the box”. When it comes to truly creative problem solving there is no box.

The solution is in this short video clip. https://youtu.be/XrwnrpFVugw

“More often than not in history is a record of conflict between an Us and a Them. We see this pattern expressed across a broad spectrum: nation to nation, among political parties, between labor and management, and in the most intimate realms of our lives. What framework will transform us AND those whose claims on resources, territory, and the “truth” are irreconcilable with ours? What can we invent that will take us from an entrenched posture of hostility to one of enthusiasm and deep regard?”

It is time to move into togetherness and begin to tell the We story. Working together in the way a family does to reveal a story to tell. All of the doubts, fears, struggles and competition disappear to reveal the courage needed to join individuals together to start the practice of we.

What do we want to do? How can we make a positive impact on the lives of others today? We need to have a solution-focused view with a mindset of being the solution daily. We can achieve many things together as WE have a story to tell.

Let’s Debate

Do we see debates over issues? A debate is a discussion of opposing sides of a specific topic, subject, or issue. An example would be a discussion of the pros and cons of reopening schools after Covid-19. I think I have seen some…. At least they resemble debates.

We most likely would see debates in our legislative branches of government. Have you witnessed debates? I have listened carefully since engaging in researching this topic. We are looking for specific elements in each person pleading their reasoning for their point.

I believe one of the critical skills and elements needed to help children succeed in the future is being able to have essential conversations to debate their points successfully.

The emphasis on teaching children how to protest is misdirected, in my opinion. A focus on how to convince others of the position they have by making points grounded in evidence of value is where the teaching should be focused. Critical thinking skills, knowledge, and strong communication skills will serve all of us in the future with positive outcomes.

Hugo Mercier, in the following TED-Ed clip, explains how an argument can be more convincing when it contains these elements:

  • A good knowledge of your audience you are speaking to.
  • What are the beliefs of the audience?
  • Who and what the audience trusts?
  • What are the values of the audience?

These elements seem like a simple recipe for success. Understanding the audience’s beliefs, trusted sources, and values of others are not always easy for us. As we face an issue, problem or challenge, we do not go first to what we have learned about our audience; instead, we go to our own.

A recipe for success in facing a problem in need of solutions is always to listen first. We hear with more than our ears. To meet issues with debate, reasoning, and convincing rebuttals, we need to embrace all views. Our minds must be open to debate to appreciate and comprehend points different than our set of facts. We have to accept others’ points made convincingly as right and concede when our points are proven wrong.

Every voice has the right to be heard. Actions speak louder than words is often a statement made in high-tempered issues. These actions in no way have ever meant to cause suffering on others, violence, or prevent others from the freedoms granted in this country. Actions moved by the words of others should be in having positive outcomes in the efforts of change. An example would be:

“Today, the sun begins to rise for a new day. It is a chance for each of us to show a new way. To bring to the surface more issues to praise. The life we live changes with every season. Unexpected issues, diseases, challenges, and problems come with no reason. It is our actions, words, and true messages we send out that conveys-The point we try to make.”~Brenda Yoho

Please watch the TED link shared. It is an excellent segment to view. You can find more features to consider as you lead changes and growth in your field. Today is a great day to learn, reflect and lead. Thank you for being part of the solution daily!