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Plan your evening… using Six Thinking Hats

What do I get her? Where do I take her? Will she enjoy the movies? What cuisine would be her favourite choice for the day? Should I get her flowers or a brooch or buy her jewellery?

Uff!! The umpteen thoughts that go behind planning this your evening out with your loved one! Some of us finally go with our intuition, and if we’re lucky, the evening is fantastic… and for those of us inexplicably in love, it is a breeze…
Still, for those of us who’re unsure, or yet battling out choices, here’s a method that can help… taking into consideration logic and emotions – Edward de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats! It is a simple, effective, globally accepted parallel thinking process that helps us to be more productive, focused, and mindfully involved in making decisions – even in matters of the heart!!

Planning your evening out with your loved one, usually is a swirl of emotions, which may lead to a state of helplessness and confusion. We finally decide and cross our fingers for the best! What are these emotions doing where there ought to be only one. Love…
Now, here’s a real gift… a technique that helps make the best choice within 30 minutes! Just 30 minutes…. All you got to do is to use the Six Hats and follow the steps below:

Blue Hat – 2 minutes
Wear your blue hat for 2 minutes and manage your thought process the next 30 minutes by playing the role of a facilitator. Answer:
Focus: Decide how to make this the most cherished and fantastic evening for us.
Sequence of hats and time for each: Blue (already started – 2 minutes), Red – 30 seconds, White – 4 minutes, Green – 4 minutes, Blue – 2 minutes, Yellow – 4 minutes, Black – 4 minutes, Red – 30 seconds, Blue – 4 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes
Remember, the time you are wearing a hat, stay focused only on the questions under that hat, without wandering off to others!

Imagine! An effective decision on the best way to spend your evening, in the next 23 minutes!!!!

Red Hat – 30 seconds – feelings, emotions and intuitions. Answer:
Is there any place you just know is right?
Is there any gift you just know is right?
No reasons, no logic, no explanation as to why – just note it down. Nothing on the top of your head – don’t worry – leave blank.

White Hat – 4 minutes – data and information. Answer these (no speculation – based on past experiences, or ask her or her friends and relatives you know):
her likes? – in clothes (western/Indian/etc), in cuisines (Mexican/Indian/Italian/Mediterranean/etc.), in gifts (jewellery/clothes/perfume/etc), and flowers and card?
her dislikes? – what should you be sure to avoid in the above?
Where did you go out the last 3 to 5 times to eat – how did she react to the place?
What were the last 3 to 5 gifts you bought her – how did she react to each of them?
What did she talk about movies – which ones did she like more – romantic/ motivational/ art/ comedy/ action/ etc?
What does she love spending her time doing more – movies, eat out, shopping, time in a park in conversation, party, or a combo?
her favourite colours, flowers, etc?
any other data or information that can be relevant and you know is accurate?
special options open in the city for this week? the latest fashion? What’s happening and what are the “in” parties and places to be in the city?
Pause here and do the research in the city paper and on the net and the bill boards for what’s on.
No evaluation of any data, just make the entire list.

Green Hat – 4 minutes – think of ideas and alternatives. Use the above white hat information and answer:
choices for the evening – movie, dinner, gift, flowers, shopping – or a combination of any of the above
choices for movies – theatre, movie, seats, show?
choices for dinner – restaurant, time, table, book in advance?
choices for gift – from likes and dislikes – gift wrapper colour to the gift – buy with her by taking her shopping or buy earlier – where to buy?
choices for flowers n card – place to buy, when and how to send / give her, mix of flowers for bouquet – you can give her more than just roses!
choices if to go shopping – your budget, which mall(s), shopping for what?
any other ideas you have on how to spend the evening?
Again, no evaluation of any of the above choices, just make the entire list.

Blue Hat – 2 minutes
Consolidate the points from the above green hat ideas and the 1st red hat intuition points to form a cohesive list of activities for the evening.

Yellow Hat – 4 minutes – benefits. For each of the above consolidated points under the blue hat:
Why should we do this that evening?
How will it work out for the good?
How will it help us have a good time?
How will it express my love and affection towards her?
How will it make her and me happy?
Are there any other benefits and plus points in any of the above points?

Black Hat – 4 minutes –weaknesses or the areas of potential problems or points of caution in various ideas. For each of the above consolidated points under the blue hat:
Why may this not work out that evening?
What possible problems we may face if we take up this activity?
What possibilities that something here may be unpleasant for me or for her?
What may cause problems at home, or for work the next day?
What are a few unexpected situations that you may need to be prepared for?
It may be tough to get yourself to look at potential problems in the activities you want to do on this day, still, focus your mind on them, as they are important in a decision making process. Then, since you’ve thought about them already, you’re prepared for them!!

Red Hat – 30 seconds
The Red Hat deals with feelings, emotions and intuitions. For a quick 30 seconds, take a look at all the points you have listed down, and pick the option/options that appeal most to you. Choose the combination from what your intuition says – take minimal time..

Blue Hat – 4 minutes
Wear your blue hat for 4 minutes and manage your thought process by playing the role of a facilitator. Consolidate and answer with a yes or no and if yes, specify:
Flowers and Card:
Gift:
Dinner:
Party:
Shopping:
Movies:
Potential problems to be prepared for that might crop up:

All said and done, spending time with your loved one is only about love and friendship and happiness and enjoyment… So, relax… and have a fantabulous time!!!
The Six Thinking Hats model is also a useful tool for ensuring comprehensive analysis of problems, creating a framework for conversations and preventing conflicts.

Also refer http://content.msn.co.in/MSNContribute/Story.aspx?PageID=e28cf452-09be-4dd5-a6c0-c998d81bf851

Revathi Turaga
Certified Edward de Bono trainer and Meta Mind Management trainer
http://www.revathionline.com

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December 9, 2008 Posted by | Edward de Bono | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment