3. The Organized and Playful Mind

1. Habits of Thought. Thinking is like everything else in your personality: unique to you, and composed of "possibilities" and "habits." Habits of thinking can include irony, doubt, cynicism, enthusiasm, gullibility, and literal-mindedness, among many others; and, as with your other habits, these can be harmful or helpful. As for the possibilities . . . they are numberless, and they remain to be explored. In this workshop we'll become better aware of our individual habits of thinking, the better to open up to new possibilities of thinking.

2. Habits of Work. Waking up in the morning is, symbolically, a habit of work. So is drinking coffee or not drinking coffee, since it may affect your manner of work. And, yes, you guessed right: everything you do contributes to your habits of work and, consequently, to your creativity, your productivity, and your health. In this workshop we'll grapple with the way we work "today" and the way we'd like to work "tomorrow."

3. Habits of Improvisation. We’ll consider that everyone has access to two modes of working, which we’ll call improvisation and structure. The modes are first and foremost frames of minds: ways of looking at things, ways of approaching a situation, ways of responding to problems or to any task. You can develop both modes separately and—more importantly—in dynamic opposition. In this workshop, we’ll consider tools for improvisation in writing and in communication, with particular emphasis on three triggers of improvisation useful to everyone, regardless of profession or goal: the Trance, the Mask, and Mind Mapping.

4. Habits of Structure. You can read the same text with an improvisatory filter (in which you let words and images flood over you and trigger all sorts of associations and fantasies that whisper, talk, or shout at your unconscious) or with a structural filter (in which you analyze a text’s construction, the order and proportion of its contents, its logic and coherence, and so on). To sharpen our habits of structure, we’ll use a series of reading exercises.

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