Image streaming increased my creativity and unlocked my inner genius.
You might be struggling, as I was, to come up with new ideas for your business.
You might have tried many different techniques, but none of them works.
In this article, I will detail exactly how you can use image streaming to unlock your inner genius and become more creative.
Here we go:
- “There Are No Bad Ideas”
- Big Ideas Gave Better Results
- One Is Better Than Zero
- The Goal: Understand Creativity
- Quantity Comes Before Quality
- “Write It Down”
- Neuroplasticity and Reinforcement
- Win Wenger and Project Renaissance
- The Physical Feedback Loop
- Your Actions Form Your Thinking
- Welcome To Crazy Town
- The Practice of Image Streaming
- A Profound Personal Shift
- More Creative Projects
- PR Resource: Mental Models
“There Are No Bad Ideas”
I’m told I was a creative child, but I lost that flair growing up.
My lack of creative ideas became a problem at the beginning of my public relations career. I feared being invited to brainstorming sessions.
During brainstorms, I would sit there, quiet and unable to develop good ideas. Only rarely would I be able to produce a single idea worthy of further consideration.
At first, I bargained with myself. One doesn’t need creativity for creativity’s sake, I argued.
“I can rely on my strategic mind instead,” I thought.
Big Ideas Gave Better Results
One client wanted to raise awareness of their recruitment services. My “strategic” line of thinking stated that I should do a SWOT analysis based on data and, based on those insights, position the brand accordingly in the news media.
I would pitch strategically chosen conflicts to clarify my client’s position to news reporters and editors and get one, two, three, four, or five mentions over time.
It was always a lot of hard groundwork and patience, but it worked. And it could have worked for the recruitment service, too.
Despite relying on this “strategic mind” of mine, my best work still came from rare sparks of creativity.
On a rare whim, I wanted to do something different for the recruitment service. I wanted to know if job applicants lied on their resumes. This had nothing to do with the brand’s position — I was just curious.
I reckoned that most people lie on their resumes. But no one talked about it.
We decided that it was a fun idea, and in typical PR fashion, we commissioned a survey:
It turned out that 4 in 5 would happily admit to having lied on their resume. And this statistic made the news — big time.
A flash of creativity yielded better and more instantaneous results than my typical strategic process.
Also, the creative outcomes demanded more praise from both client and employer than my systematic and methodical grind.
One Is Better Than Zero
To concentrate on getting better PR ideas, I stopped listening to what my colleagues were saying, and after one hour of blocking out the chatter, then — perhaps — I could come up with at least one usable idea.
One is better than zero, at least.
But at this point, my colleagues had energetically produced numerous ideas. And I had just been sitting there. Quietly. The whole thing was depressing and humiliating.
Solving problems using a strategic process was functional and, combined with the grind, kept me afloat at the agency.
But, I had to become more creative. But how?
The Goal: Understand Creativity
I took the only path I knew to take: I devised a strategic process to solve the problem. I researched information, and I developed a testable hypothesis.
My first insight was that there are people who constantly produce big ideas. But how? I wanted to know precisely.
I quickly realised that people who came up with big ideas also had terrible ideas. It seemed more productive to focus on generating lots of ideas rather than trying only to have good ones pop up in your brain.
This might be intuitive for most creatives, but this principle was news to me:
If you generate 100 ideas, at least one will be helpful. If you generate 1,000 ideas, at least one will be significant.
I might have lost my creativity at a young age, but I understood statistics:
I needed to learn how to have more ideas before learning how to have big ideas. But how do you produce many creative ideas when you struggle to create a single one?
Quantity Comes Before Quality
My observation was that creative people are intuitive and often highly visual. They seemed to be able to turn off parts of their brains tasked with logic and linear thinking and instead “see” different ideas pop up.
Big idea creatives seemed to be able to go with a flow of subconscious visualisation more freely than others as if they knew how to trust and surrender to their instincts.
I kept reading to find scientific explanations for these characteristics. Finding such answers proved more fascinating than I thought:
Our minds were naturally visual before we developed human language and inner dialogue. Without language, they had to be.
Many of us use inner dialogue to reason, a linear process. Linear thinking has merit, but we might also be squelching visual notions.
I read about how many geniuses throughout history have been crediting significant breakthroughs to visual representations that emerged instantly, like a flash of lightning.
Many geniuses were also highly productive, but their outcomes seemed to be based on quantity rather than quality. This insight is suggested to support the importance of having many ideas as a prerequisite to getting the result of having big ideas.
“Write It Down”
I also found that quite a few historical geniuses tended to write things down.
What did all of this mean?
I didn’t know how to practically convince my subconscious to push more brilliance into my conscious mind.
And I still didn’t know how to produce lots of ideas.
But I knew how to write things down!
When researching literature on behaviour psychology, a particular theme seemed to be recurring:
For any behaviour, you get more of what you reinforce.
What if writing things down is more than just a quantitative effort?
What if writing ideas down reinforces a steady stream of ideas?
I decided to take a quantitative approach to note-taking.
I pushed myself to write down ten ideas per day for three months. At first, it took a lot of effort and time. But at the end of three months, I could jot down 20 ideas in as many minutes — with little effort. Most of them were rubbish, but still. 20 ideas in 20 minutes!
I was amazed.
All those scribblings, notebooks, and ideas. Reinforcement works!
“Reinforcement learning theory suggests that reward positivity diminishes or disappears in the absence of action, highlighting the key role of agency in producing learning signals.”
Source: Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience 1Hassall, C., Hajcak, G., & Krigolson, O. (2019). The importance of agency in human reward processing. Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience, 1 – 9. … Continue reading
Good stuff, yes.
Complicated territory? Indeed.
Neuroplasticity and Reinforcement
At this time, there wasn’t much literature on the topic. However, the emerging evidence for neuroplasticity seemed promising.
“Neuroplasticity research shows that the brain can grow under favorable circumstances, potentially affecting intelligence.”
Source: Journal of the Indian Medical Association 2Chakraborty, R., Chatterjee, A., Choudhary, S., & Chakraborty, P. (2007). Neuroplasticity – a paradigm shift in neurosciences. Journal of the Indian Medical Association, 105 9, 513 – 4, 516 – 8, 520 – 1
“Neuroplasticity can respond to stimuli by reorganizing its structure, function, and connections, and promising therapies like brain stimulation and neuropharmacological interventions may enhance training-induced cognitive and motor learning.”
Source: Brain 3Cramer, S., Sur, M., Dobkin, B., O’Brien, C., Sanger, T., Trojanowski, J., Rumsey, J., Hicks, R., Cameron, J., Chen, D., Chen, W., Cohen, L., Decharms, C., Duffy, C., Eden, G., Fetz, E., Filart, R., … Continue reading
Research on neuroplasticity stated that the brain could wire and rewire itself based on external stimuli. It suggests that our brain constantly reinforces and eliminates neural pathways.
“Reinforcement learning is linked to neuroplasticity, as a large proportion of the brain is involved in representing and updating value functions and using them to choose actions.”
Source: Annual review of neuroscience 4Lee, D., Seo, H., & Jung, M. (2012). Neural basis of reinforcement learning and decision making. Annual review of neuroscience, 35,
287 – 308. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-neuro-062111 – 150512
So, I assumed that writing ideas down might reinforce neural pathways helpful in generating ideas. I tried rigorously writing down each idea — and I got more ideas.
Now, please note that I’m not making any claims here. I understand the difference between anecdotal experiences and scientific facts. I know the difference between correlation and causality.
But I never set out to establish new facts. I only set out to find ways to become more creative. If I got there by tricking my psychology, it didn’t matter. If it worked, it didn’t matter why.
As I began performing increasingly better during brainstorms, my confidence grew. And confidence is likely part of the explanation, too. I kept writing down my ideas, and the experiment worked fine.
But, I still felt I hadn’t understood the creative process. And it was hard work writing down every new idea.
I kept wondering why writing ideas down was essential to the process. If I stopped writing ideas down, my progress quickly plateaued. I was missing something, I thought.
Win Wenger and Project Renaissance
Unfortunately, I could not find scientific literature on what type of behaviours seemed to have a more significant impact (and why) on neuroplasticity. This is where I stumbled upon Project Renaissance and the contrarian ideas of Win Wenger, PhD.
Wenger had developed a hypothesis that I found to be highly interesting for my line of research: he argued that neural pathways were reinforced by physical feedback only. Meaning: Just thinking about things doesn’t reinforce behaviours. Only physical action does.
For instance: If you’re thinking of going to the gym without actually going, your brain will interpret this as a waste of energy.
There was an evolutionary argument for Wenger’s line of reasoning:
Infants must learn a lot to survive — quickly. However, conventional skill development and habit building are too time-consuming. Infants learn differently.
The Physical Feedback Loop
In some sense, infants are born with a “fully wired brain.” This allows infants to learn rapidly by reducing neural pathways instead of creating them. How does this work?
“Infants show evidence of rule learning only in the presence of informative multimodal cues, which may help explain their success in learning abstract rules.”
Source: Developmental science 5Frank, M., Slemmer, J., Marcus, G., & Johnson, S. (2009). Information from multiple modalities helps 5‑month-olds learn abstract rules. Developmental science, 12 4,504−9. … Continue reading
Multimodal cues = These modes can include visual, auditory, tactile, gestural, and linguistic channels in human interaction.
Imagine a newborn baby. How does it learn to control arms and legs? The baby’s brains send millions of signals, some producing a physical response. This creates a feedback loop.
The feedback loop informs the baby’s brain about what controls what. Signals that don’t result in physical feedback and the brain’s synaptic structure are efficiently chiselled out — in theory.
And through neuroplasticity, the physical feedback loop keeps affecting our brain structures.
Since human language and inner dialogue entered our evolutionary path so late, mental reasoning still sits entirely outside this ancient neural feedback system.
The feedback loop suggests that most of us might be wasting lots of mental energy on building skills and habits without properly reinforcing them physically.
Your Actions Form Your Thinking
“Activity-dependent neuroplasticity is inducible by regimens of exercises and therapies, and mechanical stimulation of brain regions through therapeutic hypothermia or deep brain stimulation.”
Source: International Journal of Neuroscience 6Sasmita, A., Kuruvilla, J., & Ling, A. (2018). Harnessing neuroplasticity: modern approaches and clinical future. International Journal of Neuroscience, 128, 1061 – 1077. … Continue reading
Here’s one way of describing the potency of the physical feedback loop:
If you get a great idea but neglect to manifest it through a physical act (like writing it down), you send signals to your brain to downsize those synaptic structures to conserve energy.
If you get great ideas and you manifest them physically, your brain will reinforce those synaptic structures to increase your chances of survival. If you get great ideas but neglect to manifest them physically, your brain will weaken those synaptic structures to conserve energy.
As I was reading about his somewhat esoteric findings on Wenger, he had more to say on the subject:
What if our language-driven inner dialogue fails to tap into available subconscious resources? What if significant reserves of ingenuity and creativity reside in us subconsciously? It’s a beautiful idea, for sure.
Welcome To Crazy Town
Wenger suggested that the subconscious parts of our brains, being “ancient” from an evolutionary perspective, might not “speak” human language. Instead, he proposed that these parts of our brains communicate visually. This is why dreams are primarily visual, for instance.
To unlock our inner ingenuity, we must tap into these ancient parts of our brains. We must find a way to condition our conscious mind to visualisations bubbling up from our subconscious depths.
Wenger suggested a form of meditation, image streaming, which was then reinforced using pen and paper or a tape recorder.
Okay. Welcome to crazy town, I thought.
How did you end up in this new-age space?
Still, easy enough to put to the test.
The Practice of Image Streaming
I started practising image streaming. I sit down for a few minutes, and I close my eyes. Unlike meditation, where you practice letting go of thoughts entering your mind, you wait for visualisations to enter your mind.
You then stay with whatever visuals manifest, examining them in detail using your inner eye. Directly afterwards, you write down your observations.
You begin by examining one visual per session. As you get used to the practice, visuals flow more freely. They also become more vivid in colour and detail. You can do many of them if you write them down directly afterwards.
Image streaming is a simple habit. You sit down, close your eyes, and relax. If you’re familiar with meditation, that will help. Instead of letting thoughts pass, you pay attention to any imagery that presents itself mentally.
After a short session, you describe any images you encountered as detailed as possible into a tape recorder or onto a notepad or a word processing document. Whatever works for you.
A Profound Personal Shift
For me, the results of combining visualisation with note-taking have been breathtaking.
Daily, I now see the visuals of problems, solutions, ideas, concepts, complexity, patterns, music, texts, and people. Before I started practising image streaming, I didn’t see anything. I only heard my inner voice talking linearly in a language I could understand.
The difference is difficult for me to explain, but the experience of seeing most things as visuals instead of hearing them as words is profound.
It could be that image streaming works because I think it does. One personal anecdote doesn’t constitute evidence. But even if I’m wrong about the physical feedback loop and image-streaming, I’m still happy to reap the benefits personally.
Still, as a theoretical framework for increasing creativity, image streaming is conceptually interesting — and further testable.
Thinking of it, I better write this down…
More Creative Projects
PR Resource: Mental Models
Mental Models: How To Think Better — Faster
“You only have to do a few things right in your life so long as you don’t do too many things wrong.”
— Warren Buffett
Mental models emphasize the importance of viewing problems from multiple perspectives, recognizing personal limitations, and understanding the often unforeseen interactions between different factors.
These models are inspired heavily by the writings of Charlie Munger, Vice Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway and long-time collaborator of Warren Buffett and many others.7It’s worth noting that these models are not exclusively Charlie Munger’s inventions but tools he advocates for effective thinking and decision-making.
Here’s a list of my favourite mental models:
The Iron Prescription—This mental model suggests that sometimes, the most challenging actions or decisions yield the best long-term results. Sticking to a tough workout involves pushing through difficulties and resistance to achieve greater rewards. It’s about discipline, perseverance, and the willingness to undertake hard tasks for future gain.
The Red Queen Effect—Originating from Lewis Carroll’s “Through the Looking-Glass,” this metaphor describes a situation where one must continuously adapt, evolve, and work to maintain their position. It’s often used in the context of businesses needing to innovate constantly to stay competitive.
Occam’s Razor—This principle suggests that the simplest explanation is usually correct. The one with the fewest assumptions should be selected when presented with competing hypotheses. It’s a tool for cutting through complexity and focusing on what’s most likely true.
Hanlon’s Razor—This model advises not to attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by incompetence or mistake. It’s a reminder to look for simpler explanations before jumping to conclusions about someone’s intentions.
Vaguely Right vs Precisely Wrong—This principle suggests it is better to be approximately correct than exactly incorrect. In many situations, seeking precision can lead to errors if the underlying assumptions or data are flawed. Sometimes, a rough estimate is more useful than a precise but potentially misleading figure.
Fat Pitch—Borrowed from baseball, this concept refers to waiting patiently for the perfect opportunity — a situation where the chances of success are exceptionally high. It suggests the importance of patience and striking when the time is right.
Chesterton’s Fence—A principle stating that reforms should not be made until the reasoning behind the existing state of affairs is understood. It’s about respecting the wisdom embedded in established practices and conventions before making changes.
First-Conclusion Bias—This is the tendency to stick with the first conclusion reached without considering alternative possibilities or additional information. It’s a cognitive bias that can impede critical thinking and thorough analysis.
First Principles Thinking—This approach involves breaking down complex problems into their most basic elements and then reassembling them from the ground up. It’s about getting to the fundamental truths of a situation and building your understanding from there rather than relying on assumptions or conventional wisdom.
The Map Is Not the Territory—This model reminds us that representations of reality are not reality itself. Maps, models, and descriptions are simplifications and cannot capture every aspect of the actual territory or situation. It’s a caution against over-relying on models and theories without considering the nuances of real-world situations. 8Silfwer, J. (2022, November 3). Walter Lippmann: Public Opinion and Perception Management. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/walter-lippmann/
Bell Curve—This curve is a graphical depiction of a normal distribution, showing how many occurrences fall near the mean value and fewer occur as you move away from the mean. In decision-making, it’s used to understand and anticipate variability and to recognize that while extreme cases exist, most outcomes will cluster around the average.
Compounding—Often used in the context of finance, compounding refers to the process where the value of an investment increases because the earnings on an investment, both capital gains and interest, earn interest as time passes. This principle can be applied more broadly to understand how small, consistent efforts can yield significant long-term results.
Survival of the Fittest—Borrowed from evolutionary biology, this mental model suggests that only those best adapted to their environment survive and thrive. In a business context, it can refer to companies that adapt to changing market conditions and are more likely to succeed.
Mr. Market—A metaphor created by Benjamin Graham, representing the stock market’s mood swings from optimism to pessimism. It’s used to illustrate emotional reactions in the market and the importance of maintaining objectivity.
Second-Order Thinking—This kind of thinking goes beyond the immediate effects of an action to consider the subsequent effects. It’s about thinking ahead and understanding the longer-term consequences of decisions beyond just the immediate results.
Law of Diminishing Returns—This economic principle states that as investment in a particular area increases, the rate of profit from that investment, after a certain point, cannot increase proportionally and may even decrease. It’s important to understand when additional investment yields progressively smaller returns.
Opportunity Cost—This concept refers to the potential benefits that one misses out on when choosing one alternative over another. It’s the cost of the next best option foregone. Understanding opportunity costs helps make informed decisions by considering what you must give up when choosing.
Swiss Army Knife Approach—This concept emphasizes the importance of having diverse tools (or skills). Being versatile and adaptable in various situations is valuable, like a Swiss Army knife. This model is particularly useful for uncertain and volatile situations.
Acceleration Theory—This concept indicates that the winner mustn’t lead the race from start to finish. Mathematically, delaying maximum “speed” by prolonging the slower acceleration phase correctly will get you across the finish line faster. 9Silfwer, J. (2012, October 31). The Acceleration Theory: Use Momentum To Finish First. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/acceleration-theory/
Manage Expectations—This concept involves setting realistic expectations for yourself and others. It’s about aligning hopes and predictions with what is achievable and probable, thus reducing disappointment and increasing satisfaction. Effective expectation management can lead to better personal and professional relationships and outcomes.
Techlash—This mental model acknowledges that while technology can provide solutions, it can create anticipated and unanticipated problems. It’s a reminder to approach technological innovations cautiously, considering potential negative impacts alongside the benefits.
World’s Most Intelligent Question—This mental model refers to repeatedly asking “Why?” to delve deeper into a problem and understand its root causes. One can uncover layers of understanding that might remain hidden by continually asking why something happens.
Regression to the Mean—This statistical principle states that extreme events are likely to be followed by more moderate ones. Over time, values tend to revert to the average, a concept relevant in many areas, from sports performance to business metrics.
False Dichotomy—This logical fallacy occurs when a situation is presented as having only two exclusive and mutually exhaustive options when other possibilities exist. It oversimplifies complex issues into an “either/or” choice. For instance, saying, “You are either with us or against us”, ignores the possibility of neutral or alternative positions.
Inversion—Inversion involves looking at problems backwards or from the end goal. Instead of thinking about how to achieve something, you consider what would prevent it from happening. This can reveal hidden obstacles and alternative solutions.
Psychology of Human Misjudgment—This mental model refers to understanding the common biases and errors in human thinking. One can make more rational and objective decisions by knowing how cognitive biases, like confirmation bias or the anchoring effect, can lead to flawed reasoning.
Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast—Often used in military and tactical training, this phrase encapsulates the idea that sometimes, slowing down can lead to faster overall progress. The principle is that taking deliberate, considered actions reduces mistakes and inefficiencies, which can lead to faster outcomes in the long run. In practice, it means planning, training, and executing with care, leading to smoother, more efficient operations that achieve objectives faster than rushed, less thoughtful efforts. 10Silfwer, J. (2020, April 24). Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/slow-is-smooth/
Because You Are Worth It—This mental model focuses on self-worth and investing in oneself. It suggests recognizing and affirming one’s value is crucial for personal growth, happiness, and success. This can involve self-care, education, or simply making choices that reflect one’s own value and potential.
Physics Envy—This term describes the desire to apply the precision and certainty of physics to fields where such exactitude is impossible, like economics or social sciences. It’s a caution against overreliance on quantitative methods in areas where qualitative aspects play a significant role.
Easy Street Strategy—This principle suggests that simpler solutions are often better and more effective than complex ones. In decision-making and problem-solving, seeking straightforward, clear-cut solutions can often lead to better outcomes than pursuing overly complicated strategies. 11Silfwer, J. (2021, January 27). The Easy Street PR Strategy: Keep It Simple To Win. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/easy-street-pr-strategy/
Scale is Key—This concept highlights how the impact of decisions or actions can vary dramatically depending on their scale. What works well on a small scale might not be effective or feasible on a larger scale, and vice versa.
Circle of Competence—This concept involves recognizing and understanding one’s own areas of expertise and limitations. The idea is to focus on areas where you have the most knowledge and experience rather than venturing into fields where you lack expertise, thereby increasing the likelihood of success.
Fail Fast, Fail Often—By failing fast, you quickly learn what doesn’t work, which helps in refining your approach or pivoting to something more promising. Failing often is seen not as a series of setbacks but as a necessary part of the process towards success. This mindset encourages experimentation, risk-taking, and learning from mistakes, emphasising agility and adaptability.
Correlation Do Not Equal Causation—This principle is a critical reminder in data analysis and scientific research. Just because two variables show a correlation (they seem to move together or oppose each other) does not mean one causes the other. Other variables could be at play, or it might be a coincidence.
Critical Mass—This mental model emphasizes the importance of reaching a certain threshold to trigger a significant change, whether user adoption, market penetration, or social movement growth. This model guides strategic decisions, such as resource allocation, marketing strategies, and timing of initiatives, to effectively reach and surpass this crucial point. 12Silfwer, J. (2019, March 10). Critical Mass: How Many Social Media Followers Do You Need? Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/critical-mass-followers/
Sorites Paradox—Also known as the paradox of the heap, this paradox arises from vague predicates. It involves a sequence of small changes that don’t seem to make a difference individually but, when accumulated, lead to a significant change where the exact point of change is indiscernible. For example, if you keep removing grains of sand from a heap, when does it stop being a heap? Each grain doesn’t seem to make a difference, but eventually, you’re left with no heap.
The Power of Cycle Times—Mathematically, reducing cycle times in a process that grows exponentially (like content sharing on social networks) drastically increases the growth rate, leading to faster and wider dissemination of the content, thereby driving virality. The combination of exponential growth, network effects, and feedback loops makes cycle time a critical factor. 13Let’s say the number of new social media shares per cycle is a constant multiplier, m. If the cycle time is t and the total time under consideration is T, the number of cycles in this time is T/t. … Continue reading 14Silfwer, J. (2017, February 6). Viral Loops (or How to Incentivise Social Media Sharing). Doctor Spin | the PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/viral-loop/
Non-Linearity—This mental model recognises that outcomes in many situations are not directly proportional to the inputs or efforts. It suggests that effects can be disproportionate to their causes, either escalating rapidly with small changes or remaining stagnant despite significant efforts. Understanding non-linearity helps in recognizing and anticipating complex patterns in various phenomena.
Checklists—This mental model stresses the importance of systematic approaches to prevent mistakes and oversights. Using checklists in complex or repetitive tasks ensures that all necessary steps are followed, and nothing is overlooked, thereby increasing efficiency and accuracy.
Lollapalooza—Coined by Munger, this term refers to situations where multiple factors, tendencies, or biases interact so that the combined effect is much greater than the sum of individual effects. It’s a reminder of how various elements can converge to create significant impacts, often unexpected or unprecedented.
Limits—This mental model acknowledges that everything has boundaries or limits, beyond which there can be negative consequences. Recognizing and respecting personal, professional, and physical limits is essential for sustainable growth and success.
The 5Ws—This mental model refers to the practice of asking “Who, What, When, Where, Why” (and sometimes “How”) to understand a situation or problem fully. By systematically addressing these questions, one can comprehensively understand an issue’s context, causes, and potential solutions, leading to more informed decision-making.
Chauffeur Knowledge—This mental model distinguishes between having a surface-level understanding (like a chauffeur who knows the route) and deep, genuine knowledge (like an expert who understands the intricacies of a subject). It warns against the illusion of expertise based on superficial knowledge and emphasizes the importance of true, deep understanding.
Make Friends with Eminent Dead—This mental model advocates learning from the past, particularly from significant historical figures and their writings. One can gain valuable insights and wisdom by studying the experiences and thoughts of those who have excelled in their fields.
Seizing the Middle—This strategy involves finding and maintaining a balanced, moderate position, especially in conflict or negotiation. It’s about avoiding extremes and finding a sustainable, middle-ground solution. Also, centre positions often offer the widest range of options.
Asymmetric Warfare—This refers to conflict between parties of unequal strength, where the weaker party uses unconventional tactics to exploit the vulnerabilities of the stronger opponent. It’s often discussed in military and business contexts.
Boredom Syndrome—This term refers to the human tendency to seek stimulation or change when things become routine or monotonous, which can lead to unnecessary changes or risks. Sometimes, taking no action is better than taking action, but remaining idle is sometimes difficult.
Survivorship Bias—This cognitive bias involves focusing on people or things that have “survived” some process and inadvertently overlooking those that did not due to their lack of visibility. This can lead to false conclusions because it ignores the experiences of those who did not make it through the process. 15Silfwer, J. (2019, October 17). Survivorship Bias — Correlation Does Not Equal Causation. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/survivorship-bias/
Each mental model offers a unique lens for viewing problems, making decisions, and strategizing, reflecting the complexity and diversity of thought required in various fields and situations.
In addition, numerous other mental models are used in various fields, such as economics, psychology, and systems thinking.
Learn more: Mental Models: How To Think Better — And Faster
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|Hassall, C., Hajcak, G., & Krigolson, O. (2019). The importance of agency in human reward processing. Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience, 1 – 9. https://doi.org/10.3758/s13415-019 – 00730‑2|
|Chakraborty, R., Chatterjee, A., Choudhary, S., & Chakraborty, P. (2007). Neuroplasticity – a paradigm shift in neurosciences. Journal of the Indian Medical Association, 105 9, 513 – 4, 516 – 8, 520 – 1|
|Cramer, S., Sur, M., Dobkin, B., O’Brien, C., Sanger, T., Trojanowski, J., Rumsey, J., Hicks, R., Cameron, J., Chen, D., Chen, W., Cohen, L., Decharms, C., Duffy, C., Eden, G., Fetz, E., Filart, R., Freund, M., Grant, S., Haber, S., Kalivas, P., Kolb, B., Kramer, A., Lynch, M., Mayberg, H., McQuillen, P., Nitkin, R., Pascual-Leone, Á., Reuter-Lorenz, P., Schiff, N., Sharma, A., Shekim, L., Stryker, M., Sullivan, E., & Vinogradov, S. (2011). Harnessing neuroplasticity for clinical applications. Brain, 134, 1591 – 1609. https://doi.org/10.1093/brain/awr039|
|Lee, D., Seo, H., & Jung, M. (2012). Neural basis of reinforcement learning and decision making. Annual review of neuroscience, 35,|
287 – 308. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-neuro-062111 – 150512
|Frank, M., Slemmer, J., Marcus, G., & Johnson, S. (2009). Information from multiple modalities helps 5‑month-olds learn abstract rules. Developmental science, 12 4,|
504 – 9. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467 – 7687.2008.00794.x
|Sasmita, A., Kuruvilla, J., & Ling, A. (2018). Harnessing neuroplasticity: modern approaches and clinical future. International Journal of Neuroscience, 128, 1061 – 1077. https://doi.org/10.1080/00207454.2018.1466781|
|It’s worth noting that these models are not exclusively Charlie Munger’s inventions but tools he advocates for effective thinking and decision-making.|
|Silfwer, J. (2022, November 3). Walter Lippmann: Public Opinion and Perception Management. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/walter-lippmann/|
|Silfwer, J. (2012, October 31). The Acceleration Theory: Use Momentum To Finish First. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/acceleration-theory/|
|Silfwer, J. (2020, April 24). Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/slow-is-smooth/|
|Silfwer, J. (2021, January 27). The Easy Street PR Strategy: Keep It Simple To Win. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/easy-street-pr-strategy/|
|Silfwer, J. (2019, March 10). Critical Mass: How Many Social Media Followers Do You Need? Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/critical-mass-followers/|
|Let’s say the number of new social media shares per cycle is a constant multiplier, m. If the cycle time is t and the total time under consideration is T, the number of cycles in this time is T/t. The total reach after time T can be approximated by m(T/t), assuming one initial share. When t decreases, T/t increases, meaning more cycles occur in the same total time, T. This leads to a higher power of m in the expression m(T/t), which means a significantly larger reach.|
|Silfwer, J. (2017, February 6). Viral Loops (or How to Incentivise Social Media Sharing). Doctor Spin | the PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/viral-loop/|
|Silfwer, J. (2019, October 17). Survivorship Bias — Correlation Does Not Equal Causation. Doctor Spin | The PR Blog. https://doctorspin.net/survivorship-bias/|