Critical Thinking Habits in Nursing

Critical thinking is important for people’s orientation in the world and their reactions to definite phenomena, objects, persons or situations. The developed critical thinking habits of the personal mind are the necessary conditions for a successful life because they are directly connected with the peculiarities of the individuals’ activity and their interactions with other people. Critical thinking in nursing is associated with providing quality care, making reasonable decisions and certain judgments. Critical thinkers are inclined to rely on logic and reasons rather than on emotions and feelings. Nurses with developed critical thinking habits are usually accurate and think over the problem deeply. The level of critical thinking habits’ development influences many aspects of personality. It is a fact that the improvement of certain critical thinking habits can contribute to their effective usage. However, concentration on definite habits can provoke an imbalance in the development of other critical thinking habits. That is why it is necessary to focus on the critical thinking habits which can be discussed as the strongest ones and on those habits which are not developed enough.

One of my strongest critical thinking habits is flexibility. Flexibility can be discussed as the ability to adapt to new situations and factors (Rubenfeld & Scheffer, 2010, p. 312). It is important to note that when my routines are interrupted I can focus on the new point quickly without losing the ability to think over the process carefully and provide the solutions to the problem. This quality is associated with my ability to assess the situation quickly and follow the most effective ideas. Thus, I can rethink details of the process or situation and adapt to the further development of this process to gain benefits from it.

Inquisitiveness is the next critical thinking habit of my mind which is developed significantly. I am inclined to connect the development of this quality in association with my flexibility. Thus, this kind of curiosity and interest helps me in study and work because I am always dissatisfied with the quantity and quality of the information provided, and I try to search for more facts and details, examine the possibilities and alternative variants (Rubenfeld & Scheffer, 2010, p. 312). When I learn some new materials I am interested not only in the facts presented but also in finding answers to my questions which are caused by examining the material.

Nevertheless, the high level of development of flexibility and inquisitiveness influences the weak characteristics of such habits as the ability to perceive the situation from a contextual perspective and perseverance. Focusing on the details, I have definite problems with analyzing the situation in a certain context, referring to the associated issues, surroundings, and circumstances. Therefore, it is necessary to concentrate on improving the ability to perceive the situation from a broad perspective to pay attention to all the aspects and their relationship (Rubenfeld & Scheffer, 2010, p. 311). Despite the fact I have developed inquisitiveness, it is rather difficult for me to pursue a task and overcome the associated obstacles. The problem is in my desire to find a lot of possible solutions when it is necessary to concentrate on one variant of the issue’s overcoming.

Critical thinking deals with the rational approach to analyzing problems and finding appropriate solutions (Rubenfeld & Scheffer, 2010, p. 28). The weaknesses in the development of critical thinking habits can prevent the personality from progressing in various spheres of life. Thus, nurses should pay attention to developing their critical thinking habits to overcome practical issues effectively.


Rubenfeld, G. & Scheffer, K. (2010). Critical thinking tactics for nurses: Achieving the IOM competencies. USA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.