The seventh circle: reflection

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When you have been working for many years on the basis of a particular theory, you gradually start to add your own ingredients and flavours. In 1993, I became a certified practioner of dr. Edward de Bono’s (link) Six Thinking Hats. I have used this cognitive technique for almost twenty years to help people and organisations find creative solutions.

In my professional practice, the ‘hats’ have slowly, but surely, evolved into circles. Hats sometimes remind people of children’s parties and some people are afraid that they are expected to walk around with silly hats on during my training sessions. This, I might add, is not the case. That’s why I prefer ‘cognitve circles’ these days. Although the name is different, the intention is still the same: reflect with an open mind and heart on, and become aware of, all the distinctive aspects of an issue and its possible solutions.

In the course of time, I have made yet another small change: I have added a seventh circle, a transparent one. That is why my business card shows six coloured dots and one with a hole in it.

My training sessions often generate a great deal of energy, enthusiasm and a surge of ideas. Wonderful! However, making decisions requires a different mindset. Cutting the Gordian knot requires a moment of calm and reflection, a moment to return to your core, or – to put it spiritually – the ‘shared knowledge’, the deep source. What do I want? What suits me? I only allow this transparant seventh circle to exist momentarily, a few minutes at most. If it exists longer, then rationalisation kicks in, whereas with this deep source – this core – it is feeling that counts.