Key Points

A single ProxPattern describes ways elements can or do relate in the proximity. The ProxThink ProxPatterns are an integrated group of related patterns for relating to situations.

A single ProxPattern describes ways elements can or do relate in the proximity of a situation. Together, the ProxThink ProxPatterns are an integrated group of related patterns for relating to situations. As such, they are valuable in relationship with each other. If one ProxPattern doesn’t apply in a situation, another one probably does. Further, they often work together and play off each other. They are especially helpful for creativity, innovation and problem-solving.

ProxPatterns Section of Site
The ProxThink ProxPatterns are a separate section of the site. They are patterns common to many proximities and situations, and they are especially helpful for creativity, innovation and problem-solving. The patterns are organized into three groups: Combo, Limits and Pure. We sometimes use PPs as a shorthand for ProxPatterns.

Why, Where and When?
The ProxThink ProxPatterns can help a variety of situations and people, ranging from simple objects and daily concerns, to social situations, to business situations, to community situations, to creative situations in the arts and design, to theoretical situations, to physical situations in engineering and science. The ProxPatterns apply to static and to dynamic (changing) situations.

Why Use ProxPatterns
The ProxThink ProxPatterns can help carry out the Core Idea. They can be used with ProxSets. When ProxPatterns are used together, ProxPatterns help us relate to situations in more productive, effective, adaptive, creative, playful and enjoyable ways. ProxPatterns help those qualities emerge in situations as well. ProxPatterns can suggest ways to change or adapt elements and relationships in a proximity or ProxSet. ProxPatterns can be used to evaluate or check relationships in a proximity or ProxSet. ProxPatterns provide clues about ways to start and how to progress, as well as provide options and help us deal with change. ProxPatterns allow for contradictions and complexity, yet can prevent situations from collapsing into chaos. ProxPatterns can help increase viable alternatives. ProxPatterns are simple enough for daily use, and powerful enough for some of our toughest situations.

Advanced Points
A few advanced points about ProxPatterns follow on this page.

Combo PPs – If you want choices for action that work and play well together and help elements do the same, try the Combo PPs.
Limits PPs – If you want to consider some of the limits, scope or selection of elements in your proximity, as well as possibilities within them, try the Limits PPs.
Pure PPs – If you want to consider some purely relational aspects of your situation, try the Pure PPs.
In General – In many situations, using ProxPatterns increases the chances of having viable alternatives.


• Have you noticed patterns that recur in different situations or different proximities? Have you used those patterns? They are some of your own ProxPatterns.
• What relationships are you observing in a current situation or proximity? How might you use a ProxPattern to reinforce what you are observing? Counteract it? Change it?
• How might you quickly explain your approach to someone else in terms of ProxPatterns?
• How might you help someone by explaining a ProxPattern they might use?
• How can you use ProxPatterns to better relate to change?
• Which aspect is changing the most? Is it elements, relationships, the proximity or the situation? How can you use one or several ProxPatterns to better relate?


Honor Integrity
Having a friend is often about honoring and enjoying who they are. Their values, their uniqueness, their specialness. Even if we are giving some constructive criticism, we try to honor their integrity. This pattern of honoring the integrity of an element is a ProxPattern. It is one of the Combo PPs.

Never Know All
Some relationships and elements, which are probably related to a situation, will always elude us. This pattern of never knowing all the elements related to a situation is a ProxPattern. It is one of the Limits PPs.

Introduce Related
The idea of placing the arrow keys on a computer keypad in an inverted T relates to our intuitive sense of up/down, and left/right. This pattern of introducing related elements is a ProxPattern. It is one of the Pure PPs.