Time to Think by Nancy Kline

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This book is not aimed at introverts – in fact, the word is not even mentioned once. Yet Time to Think envisions a world where everyone is listened to and given time and space to think. And, to my mind, that equates to a culture where introvert traits are valued and nurtured.

The book is fundamentally about listening, i.e. the more we improve the quality and quantity of our listening, the more we enable people to think intelligently for themselves. What sweet music to my introvert ears! In our extrovert-oriented culture, how often do we feel really listened to? And how often are we allowed the luxury of taking time to think?

Based on a set of ten behaviours, Kline has developed a system she calls a ‘Thinking Environment’, a model which transforms our interactions with others and leads to a dramatic improvement in the quality of our individual thinking. Influential within corporate and coaching circles, Time to Think is not just wishful thinking – it is a highly practical approach based on sound business principles. Although the book focuses mainly on Thinking Environments within organisations, there are also interesting chapters on applying the model to families, schools and relationships. Another welcome feature is that many of the book’s examples are drawn from UK sources due to the fact that Kline, though American, has lived in the UK for many years.

I remember the first time I read this book, several years ago. The concept of a Thinking Environment was so tantalising that I practically wept with joy and sadness at the same time. Our culture is still a long way from embracing this model of human behaviour but, as introverts, we can play an important role in getting us there, starting with reading this book!

Click the link to view this book on Amazon Time to Think: Listening to Ignite the Human Mind

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