3 Types of Minds that Distinguish Us: What’s Yours?

Did you know that there are three different types of minds? Discover yours in this article!
3 Types of Minds that Distinguish Us: What’s Yours?
Valeria Sabater

Written and verified by psychologist Valeria Sabater.

Last update: 27 May, 2022

Within the fields of psychology and personal growth, people talk about the existence of three types of minds or three very specific mental approaches.

Each of these typologies encompasses particular dynamics that are characterized by a series of effective and useful thought schemes.

On the other hand, something that should be clear is that we don’t all fit into one exclusive type of mental focus. Sometimes we use all three types of minds at once.

We usually fit in the category of one type or another. This, in turn, determines the most effective way to solve problems and relate to other people to have fuller, more satisfying relationships.

Today we want to delve into this very interesting subject with you to reflect on a few key aspects that you might find useful.

1. The fluid minds

Fluid minds don't practice self reflection
It’s very possible that the concept of the fluid mind is already familiar to you, thanks to the theories of the recently deceased Zygmunt Bauman.

Sociologists and philosophers, like Bauman, warn that a good deal of the behaviors, responses, and attitudes within today’s society are a clear reflection of the fluid mind.

These are the main characteristics:

  • A fluid mind is as fickle and impersonal.
  • The person does not practice self-reflection and gets carried away by what’s popular, the expectations of others, and also the needs of the moment instead of their own principles and values.
  • This way of thinking doesn’t adhere to fixed opinions or compromise.
  • The focus of control is external.
  • They also have poor levels of creativity because they lack enthusiasm and commitment.
  • The relationships that they establish are disposable. Meaning that one day they might show a lot of interest in someone and later leave that person to go in search of something “new”.

We recommend you also read:

Running helps fight negative emotions

2. The rigid minds

Rigid minds
No doubt you also know someone who thinks in this manner. Their minds are characterized by the following dimensions:
  • They are clearly resistant to changing any of their behaviors, beliefs, or opinions.
  • It doesn’t matter to them that certain facts can prove them wrong: they stand firm in their points of view.
  • They have a very limited range of responses and behaviors.
  • Their level of adaptation to their environment is very low– they don’t like new or unexpected things.
  • Everything that is different from how they are is “dangerous.”

Thus, a rigid mind does not adapt to the environment. Therefore, these people are not capable of understanding other people’s opinions or perspectives. Additionally they suffer from the following psychological conditions:

  • High levels of stress and depression
  • Low tolerance to frustration
  • Unhappy interpersonal relationships
  • Problems at work
  • They live anchored in the past, believing it was better than the present.

We recommend you also read:

7 signs you’re a free spirit

3. The flexible minds

The flexible mind transforms all of the processes, approaches, and strategies that every one of us should apply in our daily lives.

Thanks to the things that this mindset puts in place, a person is better able to adapt to the complex environment that surrounds them.

Consequently, they have the potential to be more productive. In addition, they enjoy a better quality of life and know how to take advantage of everything that the day can offer them.

These are the basic characteristics of a flexible mind:

  • The flexible mind is curious, applies a sense of humor and creativity, and likes to try new things.
  • They also have clear values and their own opinions but are able to open themselves to other perspectives, understand them, and adopt them if they realize that it can help them grow psychologically.
  • They also have satisfying interpersonal relationships because they know how to set limits and because they also understand how to manage friendships, love, and other important relationships.
  • The flexible mind is at peace with itself. Thus, the person is able to apply compassion, empathy, forgiveness, and respect for all that surrounds them.
  • They control stress and anxiety very well.

Learn to have a more flexible mind

You can learn to have a more flexible mind
  • Be as curious as a child, become interested in everything that surrounds you.
  • Always adopt a critical attitude and don’t settle for a single answer or a single option.
  • Listen, feel, play…use your senses to capture all kinds of information.
  • Be assertive, defend your interests, but respect and consider those of others.
  • Don’t be afraid of change– it can always bring you something that you need while teaching you things in return.
  • Learn from your mistakes and practice humility.
  • Remember that your truth is not the only truth. In fact, there are endless truths that sometimes you might not consider.
  • Disagree with authoritarian models.
  • Strengthen your sense of humor.
  • Dare to be spontaneous.

To conclude, knowing the three types of minds can help you understand some of your own behaviors and invest in your personal growth.

Dare to develop a much more flexible mind.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Arenas, L. (2011). Zygmunt Bauman: Paisajes de la modernidad líquida. Daimon Revista Internacional De Filosofía, (54), 111-124. Recuperado a partir de https://revistas.um.es/daimon/article/view/152461
  • Riso, W. (2020). El arte de ser flexible. Zenith.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.