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When we no longer know what to do we have come to our real work, and when we no longer know which way to go we have begun our real journey. The mind that is not baffled is not employed. The impeded stream is the one that sings. This chapter contains descriptions for 16 of the attributes that human beings display when they behave intelligently. In this book, we refer to them as Habits of Mind. They are the characteristics of what intelligent people do when they are confronted with problems, the resolutions to which are not immediately apparent.

These Habits of Mind seldom are performed in isolation; rather, clusters of behaviors are drawn forth and used in various situations. For example, when listening intently, we use the habits of thinking flexibly, thinking about our thinking metacognition , thinking and communicating with clarity and precision, and perhaps even questioning and posing problems. Do not conclude, based on this list, that humans display intelligent behavior in only 16 ways.

The list of the Habits of Mind is not complete. We want this list to initiate a collection of additional attributes. In fact, 12 attributes of "Intelligent Behavior" were first described in Costa, Since then, through collaboration and interaction with many others, the list has been expanded. You, your colleagues, and your students will want to continue the search for additional Habits of Mind to add to this list of Educational outcomes in traditional settings focus on how many answers a student knows.

When we teach for the Habits of Mind, we are interested also in how students behave when they don't know an answer. The Habits of Mind are performed in response to questions and problems, the answers to which are not immediately known.

We are interested in enhancing the ways students produce knowledge rather than how they merely reproduce it. We want students to learn how to develop a critical stance with their work: The critical attribute of intelligent human beings is not only having information but also knowing how to act on it.

What behaviors indicate an efficient, effective thinker? What do human beings do when they behave intelligently? Vast research on effective thinking, successful people, and intelligent behavior by Ames , Carnegie and Stynes , Ennis , Feuerstein, Rand, Hoffman, and Miller , Freeley as reported in Strugatch, , Glatthorn and Baron , Goleman , Perkins , Sternberg , and Waugh suggests that effective thinkers and peak performers have identifiable characteristics.

These characteristics have been identified in successful people in all walks of life: Horace Mann, a U. The intent is to help students get into the habit of behaving intelligently. A Habit of Mind is a pattern of intellectual behaviors that leads to productive actions. When we experience dichotomies, are confused by dilemmas, or come face-to-face with uncertainties, our most effective response requires drawing forth certain patterns of intellectual behavior.

When we draw upon these intellectual resources, the results are more powerful, of higher quality, and of greater significance than if we fail to employ such patterns of intellectual behavior. A Habit of Mind is a composite of many skills, attitudes, cues, past experiences, and proclivities.

It means that we value one pattern of intellectual behaviors over another; therefore, it implies making choices about which patterns we should use at a certain time.

It includes sensitivity to the contextual cues that signal that a particular circumstance is a time when applying a certain pattern would be useful and appropriate. It requires a level of skillfulness to use, carry out, and sustain the behaviors effectively. It suggests that after each experience in which these behaviors are used, the effects of their use are reflected upon, evaluated, modified, and carried forth to future applications.

The following sections describe each of the 16 Habits of Mind. Choosing to employ a pattern of intellectual behaviors rather than other, less productive patterns. Feeling the tendency to employ a pattern of intellectual behaviors. Perceiving opportunities for, and appropriateness of, employing the pattern of behaviors. Possessing the basic skills and capacities to carry through with the behaviors. Constantly striving to reflect on and improve performance of the pattern of intellectual behaviors.

Making it a policy to promote and incorporate the patterns of intellectual behaviors into actions, decisions, and resolutions of problematic situations. Success seems to be connected with action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes, but they never quit. Efficacious people stick to a task until it is completed.

They don't give up easily. They are able to analyze a problem, and they develop a system, structure, or strategy to attack it. They have a repertoire of alternative strategies for problem solving, and they employ a whole range of these strategies. They collect evidence to indicate their problem-solving strategy is working, and if one strategy doesn't work, they know how to back up and try another. They recognize when a theory or an idea must be rejected and another employed. They have systematic methods for analyzing a problem, which include knowing how to begin, what steps must be performed, what data must be generated or collected, and what resources are available to assist.

Because they are able to sustain a problem-solving process over time, they are comfortable with ambiguous situations. Students often give up when they don't immediately know the answer to a problem. They sometimes crumple their papers and throw them away, exclaiming "I can't do this! Some of these students have attention deficits. They have difficulty staying focused for any length of time; they are easily distracted, or they lack the ability to analyze a problem and develop a system, structure, or strategy of attack.

They may give up because they have a limited repertoire of problem-solving strategies, and thus they have few alternatives if their first strategy doesn't work. Goal-directed, self-imposed delay of gratification is perhaps the essence of emotional self-regulation: Effective problem solvers are deliberate: They intentionally establish a vision of a product, an action plan, a goal, or a destination before they begin. They strive to clarify and understand directions, they develop a strategy for approaching a problem, and they withhold immediate value judgments about an idea before they fully understand it.

Reflective individuals consider alternatives and consequences of several possible directions before they take action. They decrease their need for trial and error by gathering information, taking time to reflect on an answer before giving it, making sure they understand directions, and listening to alternative points of view. Often, students blurt out the first answer that comes to mind.

Sometimes they shout an answer, start to work without fully understanding the directions, lack an organized plan or strategy for approaching a problem, or make immediate value judgments about an idea criticizing or praising it before they fully understand it. They may take the first suggestion given or operate on the first idea that comes to mind rather than consider alternatives and the consequences of several possible directions.

Research demonstrates, however, that less impulsive, self-disciplined students are more successful. For example, Duckworth and Seligman found Highly self-disciplined adolescents outperformed their more impulsive peers on every academic performance variable, including report-card grades, standardized achievement test scores, admission to a competitive high school and attendance.

Self-discipline measured in the fall predicted more variance in each of these outcomes than did IQ, and unlike IQ, self-discipline predicted gains in academic performance over the school year. Listening is the beginning of understanding. Let the wise listen and add to their learning and let the discerning get guidance.

Highly effective people spend an inordinate amount of time and energy listening Covey, Some psychologists believe that the ability to listen to another person—to empathize with and to understand that person's point of view—is one of the highest forms of intelligent behavior.

The ability to paraphrase another person's ideas; detect indicators cues of feelings or emotional states in oral and body language empathy ; and accurately express another person's concepts, emotions, and problems—all are indicators of listening behavior. Piaget called it "overcoming egocentrism. People who demonstrate this Habit of Mind are able to see through the diverse perspectives of others.

They gently attend to another person, demonstrating their understanding of and empathy for an idea or a feeling by paraphrasing it accurately, building upon it, clarifying it, or giving an example of it. Senge, Roberts, Ross, Smith, and Kleiner suggest that to listen fully means to pay close attention to what is being said beneath the words—listening not only to the "music" but also to the essence of the person speaking; not only for what someone knows but also for what that person is trying to represent.

Ears operate at the speed of sound, which is far slower than the speed of light the eyes take in. Generative listening is the art of developing deeper silences in oneself, slowing the mind's hearing to the ears' natural speed and hearing beneath the words to their meaning. We spend 55 percent of our lives listening, but it is one of the least taught skills in schools. We often say we are listening, but actually we are rehearsing in our head what we are going to say when our partner is finished.

Some students ridicule, laugh at, or put down other students' ideas. They interrupt, are unable to build upon, can't consider the merits of, or don't operate on another person's ideas. We want students to learn to devote their mental energies to another person and to invest themselves in their partner's ideas. We want students to learn to hold in abeyance their own values, judgments, opinions, and prejudices so they can listen to and entertain another person's thoughts.

This is a complex skill requiring the ability to monitor one's own thoughts while at the same time attending to a partner's words. Listening in this way does not mean we can't disagree with someone. Good listeners try to understand what other people are saying.

In the end, they may disagree sharply, but because they have truly listened, they know exactly the nature of the disagreement. Of all forms of mental activity, the most difficult to induce even in the minds of the young, who may be presumed not to have lost their flexibility, is the art of handling the same bundle of data as before, but placing them in a new system of relations with one another by giving them a different framework, all of which virtually means putting on a different kind of thinking-cap for the moment.

It is easy to teach anybody a new fact. An amazing discovery about the human brain is its plasticity—its ability to "rewire," change, and even repair itself to become smarter. Flexible people have the most control. They have the capacity to change their minds as they receive additional data. They engage in multiple and simultaneous outcomes and activities, and they draw upon a repertoire of problem-solving strategies. They also practice style flexibility, knowing when thinking broadly and globally is appropriate and when a situation requires detailed precision.

They create and seek novel approaches, and they have a well-developed sense of humor. They envision a range of consequences.


Describing the Habits of Mind

It feels justified and reasonable and like you are doing the right thing for yourself. When you stop making excuses, you can start owning the direction that you are going in—and, if need be, have the willpower to change that direction. But, you also have to know when to leave and when to take the time to take care of your body, your health, and your emotional and social well-being.

We have seen artists sacrifice both of these in the name of their craft. But, you need your body on the most basic of levels to create your work. Successful artists know that their success is a marathon and not a sprint, so you need to maintain your health to stay in the game.

Make time in your schedule to stretch, exercise, go for walks, cook healthy meals and have conversations with your peers, family, and friends. Artist and creator of The Savvy Painter , Antrese Wood, points to these toxic relationships as holding artists back from reaching their potential. We can choose who to listen to and what advice to take.

You may have heard the adage that we are the sum of the five people we spend the most time with. Spend it with those that push you to succeed, those that have succeeded as an artist and those that inspire you to do so. Not all advice is created equal. This goes hand-in-hand with the fear of failure.

Artists who obsess on the need to make everything perfect often are afraid of failure. But, the irony in this is that they then fail to ever put anything out there. The only path to growth is putting your work out to the public. The hard reality is that you will probably fail over the course of your art career however you define that. The comforting part of this is that so will everyone else.

Everyone contributes to the world in their own way. We need doctors and lawyers and teachers, but we also need artists and craftsman and creatives that make our world interesting, vibrant and enjoyable.

Your challenge is to find out what you are at your core and then do it. They then either feel guilty when they are in the studio away from their family or away from the studio and not working. But, guilt is counterproductive emotion. If you find yourself feeling this way, remind yourself that your work is important and needed - it is what makes you whole and able to contribute more fully to your family when you are there.

Self-doubt definitely plays a role, but it can be empowering to know that not everyone is going to love your technique or subject, and that is ok. It means you are getting at something interesting and something different. Your job is to say something and to reach someone. Ask yourself if you would make the work you make today if no one would ever see it.

Again, it's about occupying one part of your brain, so that the other part is clear to be creative. I seek inspiration in film, theatre, music, art — and in watching other ballet companies, other dancers, and other types of dance. I never feel jealous of another good dancer: I always feel there is so much to learn from them. An idea never comes to me suddenly; it sits inside me for a while, and then emerges. When I'm preparing for a particular character, I look for ideas about her wherever I can.

It was so dark, and it felt just like a modern-day version of Giselle — the story of a young woman taken advantage of by others. It brought the part alive for me. Now when I talk to others who are playing Giselle, they sometimes say they're worried that it feels like a parody, and not relevant to today. I tell them to watch that film and see how modern it can be. To be truly inspired, you must learn to trust your instinct, and your creative empathy. Don't over-rehearse a part, or you'll find you get bored with it.

Hard work is important, but that comes before inspiration: That work is there just to support your instinct and your ability to empathise. Without those, you can still give a good, technically correct performance — but it will never be magical. It's much more about hard graft. Shostakovich could not have composed with the telly on.

I work best when I have windows in two walls, for some reason; maybe it is because there is more light. At the moment, I'm working in a room with no windows. It's not going well at all. The afternoon is the worst time for creativity.

It is all about developing a cold eye with which to look over your own work. I used to think that being inspired was about sitting around waiting for ideas to come to you. That can happen occasionally: But generally, it's not like that at all. I liken the process to seeing ghosts: It's about being in the right state of mind to take them and turn them into something that works. One of the most difficult things about writing music is the sheer number of distractions: When you're writing, you have to be very disciplined, to the point of being awkward: For me, the image of the tortured artist is a myth — you don't need to be miserable to write songs.

In fact, if I am feeling down, the last thing I want to do is write; though it's important sometimes just to sit down and get on with it, however you're feeling. Your creativity is like a tap: We all have that small voice that tells us we're rubbish, and we need to learn when to silence it. Early in the songwriting process, comparisons do nothing but harm: It's a bit like having children: I definitely don't have rules — I'm pretty disorganised.

In fact, I often have to guilt-trip myself into sitting down to write. It is so easy to let your life get filled up with other stuff — cooking, cleaning, going to the bank, looking after your baby.

These everyday things do come through in my songwriting, though. Most of my songs are defined by a sense of loneliness, of isolation, that I probably get from spending a lot of time on my own.

The little images that I get from sitting alone in my apartment — the way the light is falling through the window; the man I just saw walk by on the other side of the street — find their way into snatches of lyrics. I write in short spurts — for five, 10, 15 minutes — then I pace around the room, or go and get a snack. When I first moved to New York some years ago, I used to go to concerts every night — I would see six or seven musicians a week.

Now that I'm a songwriter myself, I find watching other musicians can be frustrating — I want to be the one up there performing. But every so often I see someone who inspires me to try something different. That happened recently with Sufjan Stevens — I saw him perform in Prospect Park , and his sound was so huge and poppy that I went home thinking: It's important to look outside the business.

There are so many great stories out there that have nothing to do with the theatre, or with other writers. I do a lot of my thinking once I'm in the rehearsal room — I'm inspired by the actors or designers I'm working with. Other creative people are a resource that needs to be exploited. Music is incredibly evocative: When I wrote my play Penetrator , I listened to a miserable Sade song on a loop. Listen to a song enough times, and it provokes a Pavlovian response that helps you get back to the place you're writing about.

You'll probably do that anyway, but you may as well make it a rule. Shallow-sleep dreams have been the source of many of my best ideas sadly, small children are no respecters of prospective genius.

One truly great image or scene astride a broken mess is more intriguing than a hundred well-made cliches. It's the only way to keep going when the doubt sets in. In the collaborative arts, the more open you are to shared inspiration, the richer the work. Or maybe I'm just getting lazy. The ultimate landscape is only discovered when it's under foot, so don't get too bogged down in its validity. I have a magpie attitude to inspiration: I seek it from all sorts of sources; anything that allows me to think about how culture comes together.

I'm always on the lookout — I observe people in the street; I watch films, I read, I think about the conversations that I have. I consider the gestures people use, or the colours they're wearing. It's about taking all the little everyday things and observing them with a critical eye; building up a scrapbook which you can draw on.

Sometimes, too, I look at other artworks or films to get an idea of what not to do. It's very important for inspiration to go elsewhere: I also enjoy talking to people who aren't involved in art.

For my recent work, I've had a lot of conversations with people involved in digital technologies. It's useful to get perspective on what you do by talking to all sorts of different people. Writing from a place of safety produces stuff that is at best dull and at worst dishonest. They are curiously flattered. Start from the feeling you want the audience to have at the end and then ask "How might that happen? Usually, I become aware of what has inspired me only towards the end of the creative process, or much later.

These are the sorts of things that motivate me:. Focus totally on what people will be doing in the spaces and places you are designing — next year, in five years, in What if this library were a garden? If this facade could speak, would it be cooing, swearing, silent, erudite? Architectural problems and propositions have many scales simultaneously — keep ranging across them.

The rapid bouncing back and forth of an idea can generate compelling concepts at amazing speed. Especially if realising the project is a long and demanding process, try to keep true to the spirit of the initial idea.

Why are so many creative types plagued with depression? architects, students and teachers, and any other creative type you can think of – are singled To find out, we turn to the science of the mind and the theory of human evolution. . I also highly recommend seeking professional help in the form of a. Making a timeline and requesting feedback from clients, collaborators, and others may (For a list of other occupations that may involve creative skills, including some that .. Keep in mind that developing a solid career might take years, so be . bizarre that science is using art to learn about the mind—looking for hard In other words, the abstractions are like a peak-shift effect, turning.