Two kinds of chess thinking
Thinking about the next move in chess involves cycling between synthesis and analysis, between forming ideas about the position and exploring concrete move sequences. Firstly, we analyse the position to determine what is going on, to assess our strengths and weaknesses plus any possible tactics. Then we synthesise ideas about how to proceed and formulate immediate goals. Next we synthesise a specific plan to reach the goal we have chosen. Then it is back to analysis, ie the blow-by-blow exploration of the lines that arise when we evaluate our plan. Finally, we reach a decision by synthesising a conclusion.