Visual Thinking: The Ultimate Guide to Visual Thinking

Have you ever heard the phrase, "A picture is worth a thousand words?" Some take this to mean that words cannot possibly describe what they are seeing. If you are someone who thinks like this, you are probably a visual thinker. Approximately 60-65% of the population are visual thinkers, so there is a decent chance you are a part of the group.

What does it mean to be a visual thinker?

Has anyone ever commented that you seem like a visual thinker? A visual thinker is someone who benefits from visual information. They find visuals much easier to convey, process, and remember.

Have you ever asked someone to give you directions somewhere and then just looked at them blankly at the end of the directions? You probably had a difficult time visualizing the path they were describing. You likely found yourself reaching for a map, so you could see the path you needed. This is a sign of being a visual thinker.

Here are some other signs that you might be a visual thinker.

  • You have been told you have a photographic memory.
  • Visualizing 3D objects is a cinch for you.
  • You daydream very visually.
  • You can't remember people's names, but you always remember their faces.
  • You're a great artist or believe you could be.
  • You love graphs and infographics because they show information clearly.
  • Your digital information, like Instagram, is organized beautifully.
  • You want a job that allows you to be creative.
  • You have a difficult time expressing your ideas in words.
  • You want to be an inventor.

Basically, if you find seeing things makes them easier to understand than having them explained to you, you are a visual thinker. Visual thinking is also considered to be a great way to process the world around you.

Visual thinking strategies

When it comes to using visual thinking in your daily life, you can use a few guiding questions.

What's going on?

Whatever you are looking at, a picture or action occurring before you, start by asking yourself what is going on. What kind of things do you notice? Try to determine what exactly is happening.

What makes you say that?

Once you think you have an idea of what is happening, start asking yourself why you think that. For example, are people wearing specific styles of clothes? Are they all speaking the same language? Is there something that sticks you to you? Assessing your reasoning for why you think something is occurring will help you get to the bottom of what is actually happening.

What more can you find?

You have done your initial investigation of the scene before you, but there are likely still things you haven't noticed. So, take out your metaphorical magnifying glass and take a look at the scene again.

Try to focus on areas that your brain wouldn't necessarily look at the first time. Your eyes are naturally attracted to obvious things, but you have to intentionally look for the less obvious things. Check the corners and areas you didn't pay much attention to, and you will be surprised at what you find.


Visual thinkers are pretty common in the world. They make more sense of what they experience through pictures and visualizations rather than explanations.

If you think you may be a visual thinker, you can use several guiding questions to help you understand what you are seeing. First, start by asking what is happening. Then, follow that up by asking yourself why you believe that is what is happening. Finally, you have to challenge yourself to look at the things you ignored the first time to get the full picture of what is happening.

At MindManager, we can help you with expressing your visual thinking. Download MindManager today.

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