Are you feeling like you’re always under the influence of other people’s ideas?
Maybe it’s time to be the captain of your own ship.
We all have the capacity to think for ourselves, but it requires some effort and a few tricks to get started.
In this article, I’m going to walk you through 10 mind tricks of people who consistently think for themselves.
These are people who do not let the noise of others drown their inner voice. The good news is, you can be like them too.
1. Embracing a Beginner’s Mindset
People who think for themselves often embrace the beginner’s mindset.
This is the idea of approaching every situation as if you are learning about it for the first time.
It’s about being open, eager, and devoid of preconceptions.
This mindset keeps them curious and prevents them from being swayed by conventional wisdom or common opinions.
It’s okay to feel upset if you’ve been influenced by others before.
It’s a natural human tendency to look to others for direction.
But by adopting a beginner’s mindset, you get to form your own opinions and values, irrespective of what the world is telling you.
2. Practicing Mindfulness
Mindful individuals are masters of their own thoughts.
Mindfulness is a state of being fully present and engaged in the moment.
When practiced, it allows us to observe our thoughts without judgment and resist the urge to automatically accept the beliefs and opinions of others.
The key to adopting mindfulness is patience.
You might feel frustrated as it takes time to become aware of your thoughts and responses, but remember, it’s a journey.
With every step, you are moving closer to becoming the independent thinker you aspire to be.
3. Questioning Everything
Independent thinkers question everything, even their own thoughts and beliefs.
They understand that things are not always as they seem and often, there are multiple perspectives to consider.
This habit of questioning enables them to analyze situations critically and come up with unique insights.
Yes, it’s tough to question things, especially when it’s easier to just accept what is being served to us.
But the discomfort is temporary and the reward of having your own thought process is liberating.
4. Becoming Comfortable with Discomfort
Thinking for oneself often means going against the grain, and that can cause discomfort.
But people who consistently think for themselves learn to be okay with this discomfort.
They don’t shy away from thinking differently just because it may not align with popular opinion.
Feeling upset because your views don’t align with others is normal.
But remember, the goal is not to fit in, but to think for yourself, even if it means standing alone sometimes.
5. Avoiding Information Overload
With the internet at our fingertips, it’s easy to be overwhelmed with information.
However, independent thinkers avoid this trap.
They understand that not all information is valuable and filter out the noise to focus on what truly matters.
It’s easy to feel disheartened when there’s so much conflicting information out there.
The key is to sift through it and identify what resonates with your own beliefs and values.
6. Cultivating Emotional Intelligence
People who think for themselves have high emotional intelligence.
They understand their emotions and use this understanding to guide their thinking and behavior.
They do not let their emotions control their thoughts; instead, they manage their emotions effectively to make rational decisions.
Feeling upset is a natural emotion, but remember, your emotions don’t have to dictate your thoughts.
You are in control, and with practice, you can enhance your emotional intelligence.
7. Pursuing Knowledge, not Validation
Independent thinkers pursue knowledge for its own sake, not for validation.
They are driven by the desire to learn, to grow, and to expand their perspective, not by the need for approval from others.
They do not let the fear of being judged or misunderstood deter them from exploring unconventional ideas.
You might feel unsettled by the thought of being judged or misunderstood for thinking differently.
But understand that your worth is not defined by others’ approval.
The pursuit of knowledge is a journey, and every step you take towards independent thinking is a step towards personal growth.
8. Encouraging Diverse Views
People who think for themselves understand the value of diverse perspectives.
They actively seek out opinions that are different from their own, not to conform to them, but to challenge and refine their own ideas.
They know that wisdom lies in understanding all sides of the argument.
Feeling upset about conflicting opinions is natural.
But instead of seeing them as threats, view them as opportunities to broaden your understanding and strengthen your own ideas.
Remember, it’s through friction that a spark is ignited.
9. Practicing Patience
Independent thinking doesn’t happen overnight.
People who consistently think for themselves practice patience.
They give their ideas time to form, mature, and solidify.
They don’t rush their thought process in an attempt to reach conclusions quickly.
If you’re feeling upset about the time it’s taking for you to think independently, remember that it’s not about speed but about progress.
With patience, you’ll give your thoughts the room they need to blossom.
10. Taking Responsibility for their Thoughts
Lastly, independent thinkers take responsibility for their thoughts.
They understand that they have the power to control and direct their thinking.
They don’t blame others for influencing their thoughts but take ownership and consciously steer their mind in the direction they want.
Feeling upset about past influences is valid, but remember, the power to change your thinking lies in your hands.
By taking responsibility for your thoughts, you empower yourself to cultivate an independent mind.
Thinking for yourself may seem daunting at first, especially if you’re feeling upset or overwhelmed.
But with these ten mind tricks, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a consistent independent thinker.
Remember, the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
So, take that first step today, and let the magic unfold.