Freud vs Confucius

Ever since Freud, the emphasis has been on analysis: find out the deep truths and motivations for action. Confucius’s approach was almost the exact opposite. Instead of focusing on personality he chose to focus directly on behaviour. He urged you to use the right behaviour with your colleagues, your subordinates, your superiors and your family. Confucius was not the least bit interested in your personality or psychological make-up.

The Six Hats method follows the Confucian approach rather than the analytical one. The rules of behaviour are laid out [as six hats]. You follow those rules. If you are aggressive, no one is going to try to make you less aggressive. But if the yellow hat is use, then you are to use your aggression in that direction.

Dr. Edward de Bono in his book Six Thinking Hats


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