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TAOI Online Learning - Fresh Thought Hunt Exercise

9781609948092 M


To prepare, please read Listening for Fresh Thoughts' Fresh Thought Hunt page 72 from the paperback and PDF e-book version of The Art of Insight or in the Exercise Reference Manual you downloaded.

Hint: Still no partner? You might try journaling. Take a sheet of paper and fill it with only fresh thoughts. Nothing you thought before goes on the sheet. Instead, drop those memory thoughts metaphorically on the floor beside you and go back to looking for another fresh thought. When you feel done, search for one more final fresh thought before stopping. 

Here is a video illustration:


Part 1:

Speaker outlines the topic or problem and what you have already thought about it (90 seconds maximum).

Part 2:

Speaker: Fresh Thought Hunt (3 minutes). You are either voicing a Fresh Thought or Insight Listening.

Listener: Practice Insight Listening.

Both: Monitor the feeling of the conversation. If it drifts off, mention it.


  • Look for Fresh Thoughts; insights will happen along the way.
  • Two modes only: Sharing a Fresh Thought or Quiet Listening.
  • Pause. Dont follow one train of thought for too long.

Here is a timer for your convenience.


Take a few minutes to reflect on and debrief the exercise together.

  • What fraction of the time were you listening with a quiet mind?
  • What did you hear that was fresh and new for you? Estimate the number of fresh thoughts.
  • How successful were you at speaking in short pointed phrases?
  • What was the feeling of the conversation?
  • How would you describe your sense of connection with your partner at the end of the exercise?

Here is a timer for your convenience.

You may switch roles and repeat the exercise if you wish.

Return to TAOI Online Learning home page.

If you have any comments, suggestions for improvement or reports of success you

would like to share, please send an email to [email protected]

and reference "Fresh Thought Hunt" in the subject field.