Good thinkers are always in demand and are sought out for their abilities–because anything great begins with a thought, and anything worthwhile comes from a great thinker.

Great thinkers are successful leaders. They know how to solve problems, they know how to unleash possibilities, and they know how to achieve the impossible.

People who go to the top think differently than others, and they achieve more than most.

But the good news is that successful thinking is something you can learn. Here are seven thought habits to get you started on the road to becoming a better thinker:

1. Cultivate strategic thinking. Strategic thinkers can simplify the difficult, prepare for uncertainties, and reduce the margin of errors–all because they have a plan. Strategic thinking makes you a great planner, which is how you move easily from where you are today to where you want to be tomorrow.

2. Engage in inquisitive thinking. Successful leaders spend their time questioning everything they know and everything they don’t know. When you question, you gain knowledge, and when you gain knowledge, you have impact. To be impactful, you to have to question what everyone else is taking for granted. And that alone can give you a leg up on innovation and creativity.

3. Explore big-picture thinking. Big-picture thinkers are always ready to see things that other people cannot see; they are able to size up a situation and take all the variables into account. Once you can connect dots like no one else, you’ll always be prepared to seize an opportunity when the time is right.

4. Harness focused thinking. Focused thinking shuts out interruptions and interference, allowing you to concentrate with clarity. When you can focus your thinking, you are able to bring clarity to challenges, targets, and results.

5. Utilize risk-oriented thinking. Highly successful leaders think big and dream bigger than most. When you learn how to push the envelope and dare to go where no one else has even looked yet, you’ll be admired as a risk taker, someone who dares to gamble–and because you dare more, you’ll have more.

6. Rely on shared thinking. Collaborative thinkers like to hear what other people are thinking so they can expand their own ideas. As much as we like to think we know it all, the best kind of thinking–the kind that brings the greatest return–is not done solo but is shared.

7. Practice reflective thinking. Take the time to reflect before you act, listen before you speak, understand before you respond, and engage your compassion before you react. When you take the time to reflect, it gives perspective. It allows you the bandwidth to see what is truly going on without being emotionally charged. Reflective thinking enables you to distance yourself, so you can see things with a new pair of eyes.

The best leaders are usually the best thinkers. Start today to learn their habits and cultivate their success.