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How to create innovative solutions – opposable mind

Opposable Mind: The capacity to hold two diametrically opposing ideas, and produce a synthesis that is superior to either opposing ideas.

Integrative Thinking: the ability to face constructively the tension of opposing ideas and, instead of choosing one at the expense of the other, generate a creative resolution of the tension in the form of a new idea that contains elements of the opposing ideas but it superior to each.

Salient (adjective): standing out, conspicuously

Holistically: incorporating the concept of holism in theory or practice:

Holism: The theory that whole entities, as fundamental components of reality, have an existence other than as the mere sum of their parts

How to do it


Consider a broader set of salient features, delve into more complicated casual relationships, and view the decision faced holistically.

Integrative thinker knowledge system



Generative Reasoning:  Inquire what might be rather than what is. i.e try to come up with models that’s different than what’s existing.

  • seek insights that don’t fit neatly into the existing models
  • Gathering additional data with each prototype/modeling iteration
  • See a deeper understanding of the end users’ perspective.
  • Deliberately seek out data that unsettle their certainties.

Causal Modeling: Consider nonlinear and multidirectional causal links between salient variables.

  • Reverse engineer existing solution models to identify salient variables
  • Look for any additional salient variables
  • Keep in mind the whole, while solving a particular problem.

Assertive Inquiry: SINCERE search for another’s views and tries to fill in gaps of understanding. This will help you see things from other people’s point of view, the benefits are you are using multiple people’s experience and intelligence to solve a problem, not just your own resources.