In A Nutshell
I started learning about Clear Thinking Skills (formerly known as “critical thinking skills”) when I was 16 years old. That was 51 years ago.
Over the last half century I’ve been scratching my head wondering why is it that for something that’s 2500 years old and so useful (it’s the foundation of democracy, the rule of law, the scientific method, and our personal ability to have “traction” in our world) that these things have still not made it “the last mile” and into the lives of us everyday people?
I’ve known the answer for quite some time, and I’ve been committed to finding a way to help change the situation.
In 2015 I saw a path. The photo on the right was an early concept that I started showing people and speaking in public about it.
After working it out, testing and refining it, along with the help of my team, you are now interacting with it – The Clear Thinking Campaign.
Who is Mark?
I’m just some guy who has spent the last five decades (so far) doing nothing but things that have never been done before.
My professional life started with a bang in my first year in college in 1971 at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) studying Computer Science. In a few years I was designing and building spacecraft-class computer systems for deep ocean research for Scripps Institution of Oceanography that’s part of UCSD.
As a result, I now have this ability to quickly simulate all outcomes in any situation I encounter, see the dynamics of the elements in play, and then see nothing but untried possibilities. Sometimes this process can happen in mere seconds. You may have that skill too.
I can also now see a conversation take a wrong turn before the person speaking even finishes their sentence. (This is a skill I want everyone to have using the Clear Thinking Campaign.) It’s easy to do when someone shows you how. For example, “oversimplifications create confusion” and can doom a conversation the moment they are uttered and what follows may get sidetracked cleaning up the mess.
Starting at age eleven I started questioning everything. And like all kids, I had a rough time growing up which woke me up to the world at a very early age. I’ve always had little respect for conventional thinking and I’m always thinking outside the box. This is what the Clear Thinking Campaign hopes to instill in us all.
I’ve also had to defend myself physically, emotionally and verbally when I was a kid and as a result I don’t take any crap from anyone. I’m driven, determined, and nothing if not persistent.
At the same time I have a big heart, if I may humbly say so myself. I have lots of epic friends (two are below) and I love hanging out with people and laughing a lot. One intent that infuses everything I do is “looking after everyone.” This campaign is all about us looking after each other, including those who have a hard time thinking clearly.
Having sharp clear thinking skills was my shield and sword growing up. It gave me, and continues to give me access to anything I want in life without physically or verbally fighting for it, or stepping on anyone along the way. It’s always “us,” and “we,” and never us vs. them, and never just me. I learned a very hard lesson once hitting the classic “rock bottome” when I tried to do something big without anyone else’s help. I’ll never do that again!
I’m also kind of a polymath (someone with a wide variety of skills that when combined can produce unique results.)
I’ve put in my 10,000 hours in many areas and skilled in computer hardware and software design, graphic design and website design (This 2020 version of this website I did myself from scratch). I’m also a videographer and have my own video/podcast studio. And above all else I’m an educator and continue to pursue a lifelong mastery of the art of the explanation.
I’ve also accumulated a tremendous amount of background knowledge in many fields, including physics, molecular biology, computers, psychology, philosophy, critical thinking skills, entrepreneurship, and more.
This is Andy
Andy and I describe ourselves as fellow Earth Walkers. We always start with the Cosmic Perspective and everything follows from that. Andy and I met in an entrepreneur training group many years ago, and since then we’ve done so many different things together as a team. We even started a business that fizzled, like most new businesses do, which was actually fun. Andy is currently my right hand man on this project. We both understand the ancient wisdom that there is little we can do alone.
Andy and I have had many adventures together, so far, and we have a strong lifelong bond as brothers.
The list of Andy’s skills and capabilities, along with his big heart, strongly suggest to me he’s an “old soul.” I’m truly privileged to have Andy at my side. I love you brother.
It may sound unusual for someone to say this on a professional website page but then this is the 21st Century, and our Cosmic Perspective along with a healthy disregard for conventional thinking tells us it’s more than cool to do so!
This is Sean
Sean is my testing site, my petri dish.
Sean’s life is an example of what’s possible when a person does not lose touch with their curiosity. All the good things in life certainly follow from that.
Sean had a tough life growing up not because of his family or a tough neighborhood, but because he, like the majority of people, were caught in the trap of conventional thinking.
He followed all the rules, was a successful athlete, had girlfriends, was good in school, and none of it delivered the promised results we all expect.
It turned out he was missing one thing. Curiosity. Questioning everything.
Sean got his curiosity back, pressed the reset button on his life and now things are working out really well!
Sean and I have this thing. We love talking for hours in my Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk “solving all the worlds problems, so we can get up the next day and start all over again” as we like to say!
It started after our Toastmaster meetings (a public speaking group) where we originally met and we’d start chatting and end up in sitting in my Jeep hashing out the complexities of the world late into the night. We call ourselves Jeep Talkers. And sometimes we’ll say “I have something I want to talk about – a jeep topic. That meant it was either personal, or it’s something we want to try and sort out together.
Sean has also turned out to be the perfect example of a person who can be a very clear thinker without ever having studied critical thinking skills. He’s now a skilled master of his life, able to hande anything that comes along as he moves forward with great amounts of traction.
Sean and I have also already had many adventures together, so far, and we have a strong lifelong bond as brothers. I love you too, buddy.
© 2020 Mark Halvorson. All Rights Reserved.
This campaign and website imagined, created and maintained by Mark Halvorson. This is a living document. All media is properly licensed, attributed, and usage rights are respected.
Get out there and practice, practice, practice thinking clearly with your friends and family. Help refine what people say rather than reject it. Try to say what you want in the form of a question. You can also send people here and not say a word. The huge benefit from all this is that it won’t be long until people and the world won’t be able to mess with you anymore. People will notice that about you and will want to know how you did it. Be strong and have your own ideas, style and identity. We’re all in this together.