“This is the right book for right now. Yes, learning requires focus. But, unlearning and relearning require much more - it requires choosing courage over comfort. In Think Again, Adam Grant weaves together research and storytelling to help us build the intellectual and emotional muscle we need to stay curious enough about the world to actually change it. I’ve never felt so hopeful about what I don’t know.” ―[Brené Brown, PhD, number one New York Times best-selling author of Dare to Lead]
The best-selling author of Give and Take and Originals examines the critical art of rethinking: learning to question your opinions and open other people's minds, which can position you for excellence at work and wisdom in life.
Intelligence is usually seen as the ability to think and learn, but in a rapidly changing world, there's another set of cognitive skills that might matter more: the ability to rethink and unlearn. In our daily lives, too many of us favour the comfort of conviction over the discomfort of doubt. We listen to opinions that make us feel good, instead of ideas that make us think hard. We see disagreement as a threat to our egos, rather than an opportunity to learn. We surround ourselves with people who agree with our conclusions when we should be gravitating toward those who challenge our thought process. The result is that our beliefs get brittle long before our bones. We overthink like preachers defending our sacred beliefs, prosecutors proving the other side wrong, and politicians campaigning for approval - and too little like scientists searching for truth. Intelligence is no cure, and it can even be a curse: being good at thinking can make us worse at rethinking. The brighter we are, the blinder to our own limitations we can become.
"Listening well is more than a matter of talking less. It's a set of skills in asking and responding." ―Adam Grant
Organizational psychologist Adam Grant is an expert on opening other people's minds - and our own. As Wharton's top-rated professor and the bestselling author of Originals and Give and Take, he makes it one of his guiding principles to argue like he's right but listen like he's wrong. With bold ideas and rigorous evidence, he investigates how we can embrace the joy of being wrong, bring nuance to charged conversations, and build schools, workplaces, and communities of lifelong learners. You'll learn how an international debate champion wins arguments, a Black musician persuades white supremacists to abandon hate, and a vaccine whisperer convinces concerned parents to immunize their children. Adam has coaxed Yankees fans to root for the Red Sox. Think Again reveals that we don't have to believe everything we think or internalize everything we feel. It's an invitation to let go of views that are no longer serving us well and prize mental flexibility over foolish consistency. If knowledge is power, knowing what we don't know is wisdom.
“In a heated argument, you can always stop and ask, ‘What evidence would change your mind?’ If the answer is ‘nothing,’ then there’s no point in continuing the debate.” ―Adam Grant
Inspiring Quotes and Lessons Learned from the Book Think Again
Thank Again is an inspiring book by Adam Grant, an American popular science author, and professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania specializing in organizational psychology.
. Think like a scientist. A scientist is always in a rethinking loop which enables the discovery of new knowledge. If knowledge is power, knowing what we don’t know is wisdom.
. Develop Confident Humility. Humility isn’t about a lack of self-confidence. It’s about being grounded. Knowing that we are both flawed and fallible. Never losing sight of this reality. Confidence is about self-belief.
. Detaching Opinion from Identity. We should avoid becoming too attached to our ideas and our beliefs. We shouldn’t let it become part of our identity. When we let our ideas become part of our identity, we become hostile to the thought of being wrong.
. Argue about HOW and not WHY. WHY conversations often get emotional and ego-led, and people become dismissive of others. Once you start discussing HOW people start noticing the gaps in their knowledge and the flaw in their conclusions and become less argumentative.
. How to win debates and negotiate well.
- Instead of attacking to weakest argument, acknowledge the best one.
- Focus on fewer but stronger points.
- Ask questions.
. Changing mindsets through Motivational Interviewing. We can’t motivate people to change. We have a better chance of helping them find their own motivation to change. Keys:
- Asking open-ended questions.
- Engage in reflective listening.
- Affirming the person’s ability.
. Dealing with Polarised Mindsets. People operate with binary mindsets. Everything is black or white. The solution lies in breaking this oversimplified extreme view by introducing complexity and nuance.
. Rethinking for Kids. The practice of doing multiple drafts instead of just one. Especially in creative projects. More drafts mean more rethinking, reworking, polishing and fine-tuning. Leading eventually to higher-quality output.
. Learning Organizations. Combining Psychological Safety and Process Accountability to create a learning zone. Honourable mention — Developing a culture of questioning by encouraging people to always ask “how do we know“.
. Career Planning and Identity Foreclosure. We must stop asking kids what they want to do when they grow up. The choice becomes part of their identity. We need to encourage them that careers are actions to take and not identities to claim. You live your life on autopilot because you don’t know what to do with your life.
"Difference between 'relationship conflict and idea conflict. Idea conflict leads to better understanding/thought and is easy to reconcile while relationship conflict leads to destructive ends and takes generations to reconcile." ―Ismail Hussain
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