What is the difference between being a critical thinker and being a critical person? Sometimes we confuse the two.
1. Inclined to judge severely and find fault.
2. Characterized by careful, exact evaluation and judgment: a critical reading.
Here are 5 distinctions I came up with.
1. Critical spirits make statements, critical thinking asks questions.
2. Critical spirits want to be right, critical thinking wants to understand.
3. Critical spirits devalue people, critical thinking addresses ideas or actions.
4. Critical spirits demand quick adherence, critical thinking allows time and space for growth.
5. Critical spirits fuss over personal offenses, critical thinking is concerned about the bigger picture.
I think it is good to be a critical thinker. But having a critical spirit destroys relationships, hurts unity and limits progress.
Is it hard to be a critical thinker without being critical in spirit? Why, or why not?
What would you include on the list?
Have you ever confused having a critical spirit with thinking critically?