Great scientific accomplishments require methodical, orderly, logical, and deliberate organization of thought and work. The planning of a good experiment is an experience limited to few men. A clear definition of objective, properly oriented within existing knowledge and previous publications, necessitates considerable effort, including self-conferences through scientific thought, with critical evaluation of any decision. Satisfactory and lucid planning requires leisurely but concentrated thought, even to the exclusion of one's entire environment or contact with reality.
Discipline in scientific thought is developed, self-taught, but nurtured by a good scientific environment, especially by minds of great scientists. Unfortunately, greatness is too often unrecognized by associates, for great people are simple, humble, modest people. To be considered great by some does not necessarily confer greatness. Too often, a man's prejudiced followers join to establish greatness in their "hero." Similarly, lack of contemporary recognition does not disqualify a great thinker. Time tells! It is
BURCH GE. Of Scientific Thought. AMA Arch Intern Med. 1958;102(6):855–861. doi:10.1001/archinte.1958.00260230001001