Leaders Know When to Stop Thinking

Why You Should Stop Thinking

In school, you’re taught to use your brain and to think critically, but do you know how to stop thinking when you’re stressed, worried, or trying to get to sleep at night?

All successful leaders know when and how to stop thinking. Thinking creates risk. When you’re thinking, you don’t know the right answer, and when you don’t, you have to guess.

On this page, we have collected different videos, articles, and books about successful leaders from all walks of life who have implemented ideas that stop them from thinking.

Business Professionals

Running a successful business is all about efficiency. Business leaders can only be efficient if they free their mind up to focus on what’s most important. Many leaders find ways to create simple processes and routines, so they don’t have to make decisions and they don’t have to micro-manage employees

  • Ray Kroc – the found of McDonald’s created a process that made it easier for anyone to run a burger restaurant without having to think too much (video link).
  • Warren Buffet – the real estate and invest mogul attributes much of his success to his simple and humble daily routine (video link).
  • Mark Zuckerberg – the founder and CEO of Facebook has this to say about his routine: “I really want to clear my life to make it so that I have to make as few decisions as possible about anything except how to best serve this community” (article link).
  • Oprah Winfrey – the entrepreneur and media icon also simplifies her life by following a simple routine every day (article link).


All athletes who compete at every level understand the power of turning your mind off while competing in a sport. Athletes practice consistently so when they’re competing they can rely on muscle memory and instinct instead of having to think too much on the field.

  • Tom Brady – the legendary NFL quarterback has created a carefully designed daily routine, diet, and exercise plan. He plans his life so that he doesn’t have to make any decisions about how to eat, train, and prepare for the game (Book link)
  • Lionel Messi – the world-famous soccer player has often explained what goes on in his mind when he’s competing. He’s not thinking. The game slows down and can act on pure instinct. (LINK NEEDED)
  • Stephen Curry – the record-breaking basketball super star is the perfect example of why practice makes perfect. His ability to make three-point shots with deadly accuracy comes from his intense practice habits. He practices so he doesn’t have to think on the court (video link)

Scientists & Researchers

Some of the greatest minds in science spend their life understanding how the brain the works and what leads to peak performance. Many researchers have found the benefit of reducing brain function and minimizing decisions.

  • Albert Einstein – the genius physicist is no stranger to complex theories, but he understands the value of simplicity. He is quoted, “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler.”
  • Richard Feynman – of the leading physicists to develop quantum mechanics agrees with Einstein’s love of simplicity. Feynman is quoted, “If you cannot explain something in simple terms, you don’t understand it.”
  • Daniel Kahneman – is a well-known psychologist and economist. His most famous book is Thinking, Fast and Slow. In it, he shares his findings that suggest when our brain functions are instinctive and fast, we can be operate more efficiently (Book link).
  • Scott Flansburg – also known as the Human Calculator, is able to do mathematic equations faster than a calculator. He is well known for creating ways to simplify math for everyone. When researchers looked at his brain, they discovered that it less active, even when he’s doing complex calculations (video link)
  • Lee Goldman – a heart surgeon who created a controversial decision-making process to help anyone diagnose a heart attack. He made it possible for any hospital staff to identify a heart attack with little to no thinking (article link)


  • Arnold Schwarzenegger – the world champion body builder and famous actor has acknowledged the most important skill to his success—asking for help. Arnold says he’s not a self-made man because he knew how and when to stop thinking and to ask for help (video link)
  • Marie Kondo – the famous author and TV star wrote a book called The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Her method of organizing homes makes it easier for people to clear the mind, and stop worry about their surroundings (book link)
  • Malcolm Gladwell – the successful journalist and author published a book, Blink, which explains how many successful people do their job by minimizing how much they think (book link).