The Thinker by Rodin

How Critical Thinking Can Make You Happier

by Kalinda Rose Stevenson

Why Critical Thinking Can Change Your Life for the Better

Everyone thinks. It’s a fact of human life. The big question is: How does your thinking affect your life? For a change of perspective on your life, ponder this question to discover if many of your life miseries could be ended by learning how to think critically about how you think.

Here are six online resources for you to use to become happier as you learn to to think critically about your own thinking.

  • If the topic of critical thinking is completely new to you, you'll get an excellent introduction in a short guide by Dr. Joe Lau, of the Department of Philosophy in the University of Hong Kong, on his website Critical Thinking Web. The critical thinking guide is just one of one hundred online tutorials on different aspects of thinking skills.

    The critical thinking guide is free and available as a PDF. Click on the link to download A Mini Guide to Critical Thinking. This guide is very readable and identifies some of the fundamental concepts and principles of critical thinking.

  • In Critical Thinking Skills: What are They and How Do I Get Them?, Winston Sieck of Thinker Academy defines critical thinking as a deliberative thought process that teaches you how to make decisions based on specific critical thinking skills.

    He cites the "infusion method" by Charoula Angeli and Nicos Valanides from the University of Cyprus. This method is based on the idea that people are more able to learn critical thinking skills when they consider a specific issue.

  • If the idea of critical thinking seems too abstract, how about taking some tests and quizzes? You can start by looking at Critical Thinking Quizzes & Trivia by ProProfs.

    The website ProProfs was founded by Sameer Bhatia. “He founded the company based on the vision that knowledge should be freely available to people from all walks of life.”

  • Another way to learn critical thinking is to solve puzzles. 7 Puzzles to Challenge Your Critical Thinking by Marcel Danesi, Ph.D, author of Total Brain Workout, identifies the kinds of puzzles that can be used to learn the topic of critical thinking.

    His definition of critical thinking is “the ability to comprehend the logical connections among ideas, words, phrases, and concepts.”

  • What is critical thinking? SkillsYouNeed defines critical thinking this way: “Critical thinking is the ability to think clearly and rationally, understanding the logical connection between ideas.”

    This statement about critical thinking is particularly insightful. Critical thinking is “A way of thinking about particular things at a particular time; it is not the accumulation of facts and knowledge or something that you can learn once and then use in that form forever, such as the nine times table you learn and use in school.”

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