Barriers to Critical Thinking

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Barriers to Critical Thinking One of the major barriers that influence my ability to be a critical thinker is the many perceptual barriers to clear thinking. Among these barriers there are egotism, assumptions, and defensiveness (Elder, & Paul, 2006). Egotism is a problem because it is difficult to be honest about one’s flaws or errors in thought. Egotism is most likely a form of self-protection that is often taken too far. For myself, I find that I am often unwilling to change my mind on a topic in certain situations. For example, if I know that I am logically correct about an idea it is hard for me to entertain an idea that cuts against the grain on my thinking. The problem is that many issues have more than one solution and they may all be logical in nature. I believe that this challenge in my thinking bars me from seeing many different solutions. To overcome this issue I think I need to try to listen closer to other people’s ideas even when they disagree with my own. Assumptions are conjecture or guesses made concerning a particular subject, situation, or outcome. An assumption is made when a premise or set of premises are presented in an argument and a conclusion is drawn from these premises. Assumptions can interfere with critical thinking because conclusions can be made which are not logically derived from a situation. For example, when I am at work, I often assume that certain people are going to cause issues with getting work done because they work slower than other people. In reality, these individuals work adequately but not to my level of satisfaction. I assume they are going to create a problem because I believe they are working to slow. This is not rational and it causes issue with my ability to work with others. Defensiveness is another issue I have that mainly stems from my egotism. The defensiveness is usually brought on by emotions

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