An in-house mind is a terrible thing to waste. On this I cogitated, ergo I blog (See my post of Jan. 24, 2006 about the half-life of law department knowledge; and (Sept. 22, 2006: factors that erode the rationale choice of a law firm.)
Attorneys who work for corporations start with a mix of inherited and develop intelligences (See my post of Sept. 21, 2008: IQ with 16 references.)
so they vary in their cognitive styles (See my post of Jan. 20, 2006: cognitive style diversity more important than demographic diversity.). Ultimately, thinking results from a dimly understood confluence of electrical and chemical processes in the brain (See my post of June 22, 2008: neuroscience with 32 references.).
Deliberately or unconsciously, we learn all the time (See my post of Sept. 1, 2008: learning methods with 12 references.).
Despite all this, lawyers are hardly rational automatons. Obstacles to clear thinking include cognitive biases (See my post of Feb. 5, 2009: cognitive quirks of filters and interpretation.), psychological warps (See my post of Sept. 1, 2008: peer pressure, cognitive dissonance, and selective attention; and Jan. 4, 2009: general counsel’s chilling effect.), poor physical condition (Aug. 26: 2008: sleep and mental performance; and exercise; Jan. 30, 2009: memory tips.), and stress (See my post of June 11, 2008: stress with 18 references.).
Enhancements to clear, effective and productive thinking abound (See my post of Feb. 16, 2008: decisions with 42 references.). Some of these include drugs, which can certainly fog clear thinking but can also sharpen our minds (See my post of April 22, 2008: cognition-enhancing drugs; and April 22, 2008: caffeine.).