What is The Thinking Environment?

January 28, 2012 Linda Aspey No Comments

The quality of everything we do depends on the quality of the thinking we do first.
Yet when was the last time you really had time to think when you needed it, or before you acted or made decisions? Time to collect your thoughts, to let them flow, to move them around, to weigh them up, to go as deep or as wide or as focused or as bold or as high as you wanted?
And when was the last time you were able to think in the presence of someone else who genuinely wanted to hear what you thought, who invited you to truly think for yourself, who didn’t interrupt, question, advise, direct, analyse, interpret, assess or judge? The Thinking Environment™
Is a unique and powerful framework for generative thinking developed by Nancy Kline of Time to Think. Guided by principles and human behaviours known as the Ten Components of the Thinking Environment it enables people to think for themselves with rigour, imagination, courage and grace.

What is the Thinking Partnership?
The Thinking Partnership is the step-by-step process for liberating the human mind to think for itself with unprecedented clarity, originality and rigour, within the framework of a Thinking Environment. This is a creative partnership unlike any other: a Thinker and a Thinking Partner.

How it works
This simple yet profoundly impactful framework is supported by a growing body of neuropsychological evidence that the quality of one person’s attention determines the quality of the other person’s thinking. People can go much further in their own thinking if we listen to ignite their minds, rather than listening to respond with a question, a suggestion, or advice.
Attention is an act of creation. Given the right environment, the Thinker can generate a multitude of thoughts, ask their own questions, solve their own dilemmas, and identify their own untrue assumptions that may be stifling or hindering them. And with generative, clean input and precise, visionary questioning from the Thinking Partner, can instead become clear, creative, progressive and decisive.

What can it be used for?
The Thinking Partnership is regarded by many as an essential coaching skill; the training and application of it is also a unique personal development experience.
Applying the principles of the Thinking Environment can have a transformative effect in many contexts – day to day discussions, team meetings, client relationships, even family life all can be approached from a fresh perspective.

What does Coaching for Leaders offer?
Trained in depth to advanced Consultant level by Nancy Kline, Linda Aspey offers confidential one to one Time to Think Coaching sessions for senior managers, executives and business owners. Time to Think sessions can be complemented with traditional coaching methods and tools, depending on your needs. Time to Think coaching sessions can be one-off, ad hoc or at regular intervals – whatever works best.

Coaching for Leaders also offers “Transforming Meetings” a training programme that helps you to do just exactly that – transform meetings – in your place of work. Your meetings will never again be boring, one sided or unproductive. Instead they will be places and spaces where people create, share, listen, collaborate, support and feel inspired and energised.

For more information please just get in touch with Linda Aspey at



You can read some of Linda’s articles about Time to Think here:

Developing Leaders magazine:

Time for a Rethink – New Pathways for Executive DevelopmentTherapy Today:
The Art of Coaching – Thinking Partners 
For more reading visit www.timetothink.com

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