In the area of torrential flow of information ability to think clearly is a must skill to stay on top of your goals, plans and life in general.
The below post summarises few principles of thinking employed by Vaclas Smil
My two favoites are:
- read widely, with maximum curiousity – drawing knowledge from different disciplines help not only understand those disciplines but also make connections between them.
- put reality first and theory last – reality is much more complex and nuanced the any theory can be. Models are useful but they have their limits. Pair with Map is not the Territory
More principles are at A Few Principles for Thinking Clearly.