Main Types Of Thinking and How to Improve Them
Updated on January 31, 2024
5 min read

Main Types Of Thinking and How to Improve Them

Table of Contents

The human experience presents much originality. Each life experience promotes a particular thought and tools used to comprehend those thoughts. In other words, there are different types of thinking. One person might excel in critical thinking, whereas another may excel in abstract thinking. Regardless of where you are and what aids you to compile thoughts – it is possible to keep your thinking skills sharp, even after school, college, or recently taken masterclasses. Mastering where improvement and understanding are needed in thinking is linked to our ability how to improve memory – acknowledging the way these memories are filtered through our thought process and formed gives us an ability to continue to recall our utmost best thought processes. Essentially, this will point to how your thinking skills may be improved. The good news is that we already utilize some thinking types in our daily lives.

There are seven main ways in which you enable yourself to think, even without knowing it. Each individual thought comes from particular opinions and beliefs; these ideas form through critical thinking, analytical thinking, creative thinking, abstract thinking, concrete thinking, convergent thinking, and divergent thinking.

The 7 Types of Thinking

As mentioned above, there are different kinds of thinking. One of the most commonly used ways of thinking is critical thinking. This form of thinking is based on the analysis of already available facts and information. In order to figure something out with critical thinking, one must perform an observation noticing problems and solutions. Afterward, an analysis of the information will enable more understanding of incoming data. Relevant data, personal knowledge, and personal experience will play a huge role in the outcome thoughts of critical thinking. These skills are always welcome in the workforce, school, and everyday life.

In order to take a closer look at the process of thinking and perceiving information, one may turn to analytical thinking. This is one of the ways of thinking that will help an individual reflect on the information received. Often done through comparison and a need to be fully sure in one’s data. A person who thinks this way will want to run a few tests before jumping to any conclusions. When a breakthrough happens in thought, then the idea of creative thinking becomes much easier. Creative thinking, in a sense, allows an individual to use what they already know in a new way. A process of such thoughts is very important in order to see things from a different and fresh perspective.

Abstract thinking might even sound explanatory because it provides an abstract thought process that is often not tied to reality. Thus, perceiving and conceptualizing in one’s head might not be the easiest solution for somebody who chooses a process of concrete thinking. Concrete thinking is based on what is here and now – there are things you can see, hear, feel, experience and touch. A process of thinking as such is focused on the physical world we tend to understand the most in society.

Convergent thinking found its name through the studies of Joy Paul Guilford, who also coined the opposite side of convergent thinking – divergent thinking. Tasks that involve logic, as appose to creativity, would fall under the category of convergent thinking. In essence, convergent thinking is one of the different types of thinking that will have one well-defined solution to a problem. On the other hand, divergent thinking will seek to provide multiple solutions to a problem.

There are different types of thinking, but the ultimate goal is to reach the best solution possible. Combined with a good memory recall on how one utilizes the thought process will make future decisions harder or easier. One way to recall these ways of thinking and catch yourself using them is by placing them within your memory palace. Thus when a situation occurs, one may be prone to trying something new based on something interesting they recall. This will increase the chances of finding the best possible solution. So, these types of skills will inevitably help those who hone them.

How to Maintain Your Thinking When School, College, or a Masterclass is Over

The period of intense schooling, college, or masterclasses will elevate an individual thinking ability to the next level. It is essential to continue using what you used before to keep the connections alive. In those scenarios, we often are great thinkers and problem solvers because we apply all tools given to us. Our ability to decipher information is much greater because thinking only increases when you dive into the thinking process. For example, it is hard to think mathematically after five years of not using those skills when one stops using calculus. The same goes for various thinking skills and types of thinking.

There are tools to help you think better. Apart from the thought process itself, having a way to remember thoughts and ideas is just as important. When our environment does not allow our thinking caps to be on for the whole entire day (usually how it happens in school), it is hard to get us going at full throttle mode compared to our moments of peak thinking. We tend to forget what we learned, and thus our types of thinking will diminish over time if not put to use. One way to recall much better is to apply the method of loci when attempting to recall information or, more importantly, the different types of thinking. Once more components are known, it is easier to have the best solution, which includes different types of thinking.

Tools To Help You Think Better

Thinking and brainstorming are usually side by side. There are no bad ideas in the brainstorming process. This enables an individual to jot down everything there is and then take a look at it from afar. In other words, a mind map is something that can easily be made with a piece of paper – its point is to get things moving and engage critical thinking skills. If you decide to link ideas and thoughts within your mind chart, you create a radar chart. A proper radar chart usually has the topic you are thinking about in the middle of the paper, where everything else around is connected. If you are tech-savvy or have a minimum understanding of computers, a simple spreadsheet can help organize ideas and thoughts into charts, rows, columns, diagrams, and more. Lastly, a pros and cons list is the go-to tool to help you think better. This way, when there is a thinking problem, and one does not know where to begin the process of finding the proper solution – a simple list will help eliminate unwanted routes of actions or thoughts.


There are several types of thinking, and each has different golden areas. If you master the majority of them, your level of solving problems will be above average, and if you decide to become a true master at all of these skills – you will face little to no problems that cannot be solved. The seven types of thinking enable an individual to understand their thought process and not be controlled by it. Discussing thoughts, debating, studying, and meditating are all great ways to enhance your thinking skills. As well as staying consistent in your ability to monitor your choices and have great conclusions that will propel one forward in different types of thinking.

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