Having an insight is an act of creation or We are built to be surprised.”

„Our insights transform us in several ways. They change how we understand, act, see, feel, and desire. They change how we understand. They transform our thinking; our new story gives us a different viewpoint. They change how we act. In some cases insights transform our abilities as well as our understanding… Insights transform how we see; we look for different things in keeping with our new story. … Insights transform how we feel… Finally, insights change our desires; the new stories shift our goals, leading us to give up some ambitions and pursue others.“ (p 23, 24)

„Insights don’t count for much if we can’t translate them into action…“ (p 36)

„The connection strategy… offers a clear image of insights as connecting dots. And it suggest that we can increase insights by exposing ourselves to lots of different ideas that might help us form new connections… Still I wasn’t ready to conclude that the connection strategy explained the flash of illumination. In fact, I had some reservations… It suggests that insights are just a matter of connecting the dots… the examples come across as connecting the dots because I haven’t told you about the non-dots. The non-dots would have slowed the stories down, but they are an important part of each insight – determining which dots to connect. Anyone can connect the dots if we remove the non-dots and clarify the ambiguous dots and group the dots that look different but are really the same. If all that is left is a set of unique and valid dots, then the job of connecting the dots becomes much easier. ‚Connecting the dots‘ trivializes the business of making sense of events and arriving at insights.“ (p 41)

„We are told that to make discoveries, we have to keep an open mind. However, a suspicious mind can also pay off.“ (p 67)

„We are built to notice associations and coincidences, and we are also built to detect anomalies, inconsistencies, irregularities. We are built to attend to cues that violate our expectancies and arouse our curiosity. We are built to be surprised.“ (p 74)

„Our natural tendency is to explain away the deviant data points. And for good reason. Most of the time that deviant data point is wrong or else it doesn’t really apply to our situation. It is a safer strategy to discount the anomalies, but the safe strategy doesn’t yield insights. We arrive at insights when we take the anomaly seriously.“ (p 102)

„They sensed that the contradiction was important. It was an opportunity rather than an inconvenience.“ (p 103)

„‚It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you in trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.‘… The more central the belief is to our thinking, the harder it is to give up. These core beliefs anchor our understanding. We use them to make sense of events, to inquire, and to arrive at judgements about our ideas. And so we are much more likely to explain away any anomalies rather than revise our beliefs in the the face of them.“ (p 125)

„Insight is the opposite of predictable. Insights are disruptive. They come without warning, take forms that are unexpected, and open up unimagined opportunities.“ (p 153)

„The concept of an ‚organization‘ entails a structure of established power relationships through lines of authority and responsibility for assigned duties. Insights are shifts in our understanding, actions, perceptions, goals, and emotions. They are fundamentally dis-organising.“ (p 162)

„Insight involves making new discovery without having to consider bad ideas. As the mathematician Henri Poincare put it, ‚Creation… does not consist in making new combinations… absolutely without interest. To create consists precisely in not making use-less combinations.“ (p. 187)

„Having an insight is an act of creation. Each insight is the creation of a new idea that didn’t exist before, often in opposition to defective ideas that formerly prevailed. No one expected this new idea to emerge, and other people  who possessed the same information were unaware of its existence.“ (p 248)

Seeing What Others Don’t. The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights. Gary Klein, 2017, Nicholas Brealey Publishing.

We provide our insights through quotes directly taken from books, articles, videos, info graphs and other media. We do not add, comment or reflect on the topics highlighted or represent the media in its intentions or as a whole. We hope to inspire you to dig deeper, discover and fall in love with your own eureka moments.

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