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De Bono's Thinking Course (1982)

by Edward de Bono

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562732,272 (3.52)3
Transform your thinking!   Is the way you think like the colour of your eyes - something you are born with and cannot alter?  Or is thinking a skill that can be improved with practice, like swimming, tennis or cooking?   In this practical book, Edward de Bono lays out some simple but powerful tools with which we can optimize our thinking, decision making and problem solving.  Most of the errors of thinking are errors of perception and that is precisely where these tools help.   Learn:   How to enhance your thinking processes by developing your perception How to make the most of your thinking skills and how thinking differs from intelligence How to make decisions, and deal with emotions and values whilst focusing on the future.   Edward de Bono, the inventor or the term 'lateral thinking', is widely believed to be the world's leading authority on the direct teaching of thinking as a skill.  He is the author of over 60 books and his methods are widely used in many countries.  He advises multinational corporations and also works with educational bodies to enable individuals to maximize their thinking abilities.  … (more)
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» See also 3 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Argues that thinking is a skill that can be developed, offers advice on perception, lateral thinking, and decision making, and tells how to start a thinking club. ( )
  cdiemert | Jul 30, 2017 |
This book actually contains three, five day courses, each dealing with a different style of thinking. The focus of the book is directed less towards the solving of the problems, than at helping you understand your approach, and through this awareness, improve your thinking abilities.

Each course sets a practical hands-on problem, that requires no specialist knowledge or maths. Throughout the five days it builds, what begins as a tricky challenge, into one more difficult than you would have imagined being able to solve. En route De Bono offers insights into the problem solving process and pointers to areas you might explore to illuminate your own thought processes.

The three courses look at insight, sequential and strategic thinking. De Bono succeeds in creating an entertaining learning environment. Readers will enjoy the challenges set and will gain valuable insights from their thinking about their thinking.

A powerful book to improve what Woody Allen called his ‘second most favourite organ’.

Sample Problem
As a taster, this is the first puzzle of the book.

Place three bottles upright on the floor to form a triangle where the distance between the bases of the bottles is slightly larger than the length of a knife. Use three identical knives to form a platform on top of the bottles to support a full glass of water. No part of any knife may touch the floor.

If you like this kind of challenge and can resist turning quickly to the solutions this book will give your the opportunity to explore and learn about your thinking processes. ( )
1 vote Steve55 | Sep 4, 2011 |
I have the 1985 Facts on File edition (I'm not sure all the works combined here are the same). The writing is terrible. Examples are jumbled in with explanations, explanations end with comments like "for more information see my book Lateral Thinking". I'm hoping it's the Facts on File format that's getting in the way of making sense of this book. It looks like he has some good ideas, but I'm not going to ferret them out of this presentation. Part of the problem may also be that I've already had a bunch of training in lateral thinking and was just looking for some new techniques to throw in the mix. If you start from the beginning and do all the exercises this book might work better, though the writing is still not the best. ( )
  aulsmith | Dec 10, 2010 |
In fairness to De Bono, I must start my critique by saying I have not yet truly practiced the exercises in the book the way he describes them. I intend to keep this book out and practice on real world things in my life, be it buying shoes, entertaining or disciplining my children, repainting the bathroom... whatever. But until I have truly practiced the thinking exercises, then a true review is impossible.

That said: The concept of the book is that thinking is a skill to be practiced, developed, and improved on; and it is a skill that anyone can develop. It is different from intelligence, that is more or less inborn. De Bono offeres a series of exercises for thinking about things in different ways. The exercises all seem like excellent plans, though as I mentioned, I've only read the book at this point.

Unfortunately, De Bono is not as good at writing as he is at thinking. A better writer could have produced a better book with the same content. Some examples he gives are nonsensical, he is at times redundant, and the book has a number of obtuse illustrations that are more confusing than helpful.

At this point, I would recommend the book for anyone who is interested in thinking as a process. Hopefully after practicing the exercises I will be inclined to rewrite this review and highly recommend it for everyone, but I'll hold off on that for now. ( )
2 vote fingerpost | Oct 28, 2009 |
Reading
  wlchui | Aug 2, 2009 |
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Transform your thinking!   Is the way you think like the colour of your eyes - something you are born with and cannot alter?  Or is thinking a skill that can be improved with practice, like swimming, tennis or cooking?   In this practical book, Edward de Bono lays out some simple but powerful tools with which we can optimize our thinking, decision making and problem solving.  Most of the errors of thinking are errors of perception and that is precisely where these tools help.   Learn:   How to enhance your thinking processes by developing your perception How to make the most of your thinking skills and how thinking differs from intelligence How to make decisions, and deal with emotions and values whilst focusing on the future.   Edward de Bono, the inventor or the term 'lateral thinking', is widely believed to be the world's leading authority on the direct teaching of thinking as a skill.  He is the author of over 60 books and his methods are widely used in many countries.  He advises multinational corporations and also works with educational bodies to enable individuals to maximize their thinking abilities.  

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Penguin Australia

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