Lateral thinking

In psychology, there is such a thing as lateral thinking. What it is and how it works, we will tell in this article.

Lateral (lat. Lateralis - lateral) means lateral or offset. In this way, lateral thinking - this is a shifted thinking, redirected, relative to traditional thinking.

The concept of lateral thinking was suggested by the famous British psychologist Edward de Bono.

Lateral thinking is non-standard, devoid of any templates and cliches. For the first time, it began to be used by those people and companies whose activities were closely associated with creativity and the creation of new ideas.

The art of lateral thinking

One of the fundamental factors of lateral thinking is a departure from traditional and well-established stereotypes, and the transition to non-template methods.

The process of lateral thinking itself consists of three stages.

Focus selection

To create something new, it is necessary to choose the area of ​​creative activity and the direction of the search, that is, the idea from which we will build on.

Without such a starting point, it’s simply impossible to move on, and the better you focus on this idea, the easier it will be to create something new.

Generation of lateral rupture

After choosing the direction of creative efforts, we have to make a break within the framework of the established focus, which is the main stage of lateral thinking.

From some logical idea formulated in the first stage, it is important to make a certain bias that violates the logic of this idea. In other words, we need to modify our focus and implement gap of the selected pattern.


After at the second stage we broke the pattern and got a modified (most often absurd) judgment, we will need to find something logical in the new judgment.

This can be quite a difficult task, but the result will pay for everything. It is at this stage that real creativity takes place, and we get something new.

Lateral thinking is very effective in many different areas of activity. His methods can be used in any creative work.

Understanding the principles of lateral thinking, and learning to use them, you can constantly generate new ideas in your field.

For example, in business it is not uncommon that situations arise that can only be settled thanks to a well-said joke. And here a non-standard approach to the problem plays a crucial role.

That is why personal development is not just a hobby, but a necessary measure for a full, rich and harmonious existence.

Lateral thinking techniques are effectively used almost everywhere.

According to many experts, the main task of a non-standard approach to a particular problem is the rejection of search pattern. Consciousness in this case plays a passive role, as an environment within which an independent organization of information flows.

It should be understood that most people perceive a rather limited amount of information per unit of time. Therefore, they literally dwell on the problem, unconsciously rejecting any other means of solving it.

Through lateral thinking, you expand the boundaries of your consciousness, and the brain begins to act in several planes at once.

That is, with a non-standard way of thinking, the individual does not focus on the problem, but tries to solve it in a variety of conceivable and inconceivable, and sometimes even absurd ways.

Scientists in the field of neuropsychology have proven the link between divergent (non-standard) and convergent (standard) approaches to problem solving, and the hemispheres of the human brain.

The study found that the right hemisphere is responsible for the intuitive perception of reality, and the left - for logical thinking.

Depending on what a person does, this or that hemisphere will work more intensively. For example, in creative people, the right hemisphere will be more active, while in mathematicians or accountants, the left hemisphere will be more active.

Lateral thinking allows a person to approach the solution of a particular problem much more easily. Regularly practicing, you can achieve a level of development where several thoughts are born at the same time in your head, which help you to complete the task with maximum speed and maximum efficiency.

Einstein's Lateral Thinking

Moreover, lateral thinking develops mental flexibility, so that a person can quickly and easily move from one point of view to another.

Albert Einstein

As an example of lateral thinking, let us give Albert Einstein - the great scientist-physicist. By the way, we recommend paying attention to the Einstein problem, which literally ones can solve in their minds.

So Einstein knew how to think extremely non-standard. He said: "Everyone knows that this is impossible. But here comes the ignorant to whom it is unknown, - it is he who makes the discovery."

As a teenager, he was extremely interested in finding out exactly how the world would look if it were racing on a light beam at the speed of light.

At first glance, such an absurd statement, such as the desire to sit astride a ray of light, has nothing to do with science. However, it was this non-standard thinking ability that allowed Einstein to become one of the greatest scientists, and to make many outstanding discoveries.

Watch the video: How to Use Lateral Thinking & Generate Brilliant Ideas (April 2020).