Abstract Thinking vs Concrete Thinking
Abstract thinking and concrete thinking are two variations of thinking, where a number of differences can be identified between them. Simply while some people think in a particular way, others think in a different way. These differences and variations in thinking styles are all natural and God-gifted. One can, however, change the way they think. They can even change their beliefs at one point if some other thinking has completely taken over and convinced the former manner of thinking. In any case, we all are born and bred with a certain mindset which leads us to become either of the concrete thinkers or abstract thinkers. Both terms are different from each other and show how different people have a specific view of looking at things and perceiving them according to their thinking skills and analytical abilities. It is evident that every one of us can be differentiated and categorized, based on how we look at things and depict the meaning out of them. There are situations where one cannot really say what a concrete thinker might be thinking in contrast to that of an abstract thinker. It is vital to elucidate the terms separately and identify the differences, to gain a deeper understanding of both concepts in a proper manner.
What is Abstract Thinking?
First, abstract thinking can be explained as the manner of thinking in which concentration is on conceptualization or generalization of a certain thing. An abstract thinker can view a particular phenomenon from an angle that others might not be able to view. Abstract thinking involves a much deeper, wider and a multitude of meanings of a single concept or idea which can arouse other issues that were never seen or discussed before. Abstract thinking also involves various options or solutions to a single problem. For an average, normal person, this may be very confusing and almost incomprehensive. Abstract thinking goes beyond all the visible and present things and depicts hidden meanings and underlying purposes of anything that’s existing and is a part of nature.
What is Concrete Thinking?
Concrete thinking, on the other hand, is very concrete and definite as the name suggests. It involves only those things which are visible to the human eye and are obvious enough for anybody who is looking at them. Concrete thinking will only consider, depend and emphasize on the literal meaning of anything, any idea or concept. It does not appreciate those ideas that rely on the factor of probability. Concrete thinking involves only those words or events which hold a face value and can be recorded, quoted or provide some evidence at least. The difference between the two terms can be summarized in the following manner. Abstract and Concrete thinking are two different ways of looking at the same thing. While abstract thinking pays attention to the hidden meaning which cannot be grasped by a lay person, concrete thinking denotes a different meaning. It is always literal, to-the-point and very direct, allowing any individual to observe and understand. Also, it is important to notice that both terms seem different and to some extent opposite of each other, yet both have to do with the two different sides of our brain. This means that there has to be a fair balance between the two and we should be able to think in both terms as and when need arises. This is essential because sometimes we need to take things, just the way they are coming to us. But there are other times when people are expecting of us to be a bit more analytic and take things in a way they don’t seem to be, but are actually are.
What is the Difference Between Abstract Thinking and Concrete Thinking?
- Abstract thinking involves an emphasis on the hidden or the intended meaning whereas concrete thinking is always literal, to-the-point and very direct.
- Abstract thinking requires much more analysis and goes deeper whereas concrete thinking remains on the surface.
- Abstract thinking and concrete thinking stand in opposition, allowing the individual to gain two different perspectives.
1.Brain-484539_640 [Public Domain], via Pixabay
2.”Kugleramme” [Public Domain], via Wikimedia Commons