The human brain is a bank of knowledge made up of our thoughts, new knowledge and personal experiences. This informs our reasoning whenever we have to make a decision.
Reasoning is simply the act of thinking about something in a rational way. Reasoning allows you to make the best decisions no matter the myriad of emotions you feel about a subject.
No child is born an adult and no man is born with the right reasoning skills unless he is taught by a person or learns from life experiences.
Just like we go to the gym to build our bones and muscles, our reasoning skills must be sharpened if we want to get the best out of it. The purpose of this article is to equip you with 10 awesome ways to improve your reasoning.
1. Think Out Loud
One way of improving your reasoning skills is to think out loud. This entails speaking your thoughts aloud to yourself, this is very useful if you are trying to understand a complex subject.
Thinking out loud helps you to align your thoughts and gauge your level of familiarity with the subject. Though it might seem weird to be talking to oneself, you can do this in environments where you are comfortable doing so.
2. Embrace Fresh Challenges
It felt strange to solve high school mathematics questions when you were in grade school and making a solo road trip looks daunting until you attempt it. Every new thing looks foreign until you try to do it.
Embracing fresh challenges removes your mind from its comfort zone and sharpens your reasoning skills.
3. Accommodate Different Points of View
The way you think is different from the way your next-door neighbour thinks. The boy who grew up in a large city will think differently from one who grew up in a small town.
Learning to listen to the opinions of others about a topic can help you to get out of your head and think about their points of view. Doing this helps you to learn a thing or two from their opinions thereby improving your reasoning and expanding your view on life.
Ever heard of the phrase, “readers are leaders”? There is a lot of truth here. Reading exposes and increases your knowledge of different topics. Also, reading stretches your imagination and encourages you to think about situations from different perspectives.
Reading should encompass different fields of life down to fiction books. You never know where that next superb idea will come from.
5. Say No to Assumptions
The assumption is a killer of creativity and reasoning. Do not assume that you have all the cards when it comes to a topic of discussion. Do not assume that you have properly understood the thoughts and experiences of a neighbour if you are still in doubt.
Open up your mind to receive fresh knowledge concerning a situation before making the best-informed decision.
6. Be Curious
Curiosity kills a cat or not. Another great way to sharpen your reasoning is to be curious about subjects that you have little knowledge of. Take, for instance, you are a member of a round table discussion concerning decarbonisation in Africa but you are a writer of fiction novels.
Open up your mind to ask questions, about terms thrown about by other participants and join the conversation. An idea for your next book might just be around the corner.
Apart from building your bones and muscles, exercising sharpens and keeps your mind alert. This can improve your reasoning skills because your body and mind are refreshed and free from stress and anxiety.
Brain function and memory improve thereby boosting reasoning.
8. Be Logical
To grow your reasoning skills, you have to be logical. This is not to downplay the role of emotions in our everyday life but an adequate understanding of knowing when to draw the line between logical reasoning and a display of emotions is a must.
Doing this will boost your reasoning capabilities equipping you for future challenges.
9. Play Games
It’s commonplace to say that games are for kids, but this is not so if you want to sharpen your reasoning. Playing board games like chess, scrabble, puzzles and card games can up your thinking game.
These games help you to make strategic choices, manage your time, manage resources and skyrocket your analytical skills. Next time you see that child playing a game, jump in.
10. Discard Bias
The last but not the least way to improve your reasoning is to discard bias. Before you discard bias, you must identify personal bias. This can be the tendency to see situations from one point of view, preferring for things to be done a certain way or thinking that you are better than others.
All these only aim to inflate your ego and not improve your reasoning. Being conscious of them and calling yourself to order when necessary is a step in the door to honing your reasoning skills.
Growing your reasoning skills is like eating the right amount of nutrients you need daily, you do not stop once you are healthy, you continue because your body depends on it for survival.
In the same vain, your personal and career growth depends on how often you learn new things, put them into practice and hone your thinking ability.