Thinking And Stress: Are You A Two Way Thinker?

by Doc Orman, M.D.

Twp way thinker?This week, I am asking you to consider the following questions about yourself:

  • Are you a one-way thinker?
  • Are you a two-way thinker?
  • Or are you a rare three-way thinker

These questions occurred to me after reading the book The Art Of Thinking (formerly Styles of Thinking) by Allen Harrison and Robert Bramson.  Based on years of extensive research, interviewing, and testing, the authors of this book determined that there are basically five primary styles of thinking.  And while most people exhibit aspects of all five styles, usually one predominates.  There are some people who are comfortable moving between two primary styles of thinking, and in very rare instances (2% of people tested) an individual can easily move between three different (and often conflicting) styles of thinking.

How Many Different Ways Of Thinking Are You Comfortable With?

So which type of thinker are you?  Are you typically locked into one particular style of thinking that you use for just about everything?  Or do you have at least two different styles of thinking that you will employ depending upon which best fits your situation or problem at hand?

To determine if you are a one-way thinker or a two-way thinker, here are a few questions to consider:

  • Do you believe there is usually “one best way” to do things this should always be logically apparent?
  • Do you believe that there is also usually “one best way” to do things, but data, research, and careful analysis before rushing into action will reveal the correct path?
  • Can you easily move between one or more conflicting beliefs, without having to know which one is actually true?
  • Can you consider one belief that you consider to be absolutely true and then switch to the exact opposite belief and see validity in it as well?
  • Are you prone to making dogmatic statements?
  • Do you defend yourself strongly when other people question your beliefs?
  • Do you frequently “butt heads” with other strong-willed people?
  • Are you good at making a plan and then considering other contingency plans or even completely different ways of doing the same thing?

Think about these questions seriously and you’ll probably get a sense of whether you are more of a one-way thinker or a two-way (or more) thinker.

Does It Make A Difference?

Does it make a difference which type of thinker you are?  I think it does.  Then again maybe it doesn’t. 

Either way, I’m going to talk about this some more in my third and final post on this topic for the week.  So please stay tuned.

Note: For a full list of all of my Kindle books about stress, click on this link:




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