Doesn’t it seem your best thoughts jump out at your at the most inconvenient times, like in the middle of the night (when you are just too tired to write them down), or when you are in the shower? Do you come up with a brilliant idea that would knock someone’s socks off, but by the time you get to jot them down they have slipped your mind?
The best part of our day is filled with ideas, some new, and some recycled. Some ideas are simply everyday and mundane – like what you want for dinner, or what you want to watch tonight on the television. Others require developing into unique thoughts that can be put to use. So why, during the course of a normal day, the best ideas seem to come at the most inopportune times?
The answer really is actually quite simple. Those off-the-wall moments are when our brains are relaxed and the creative ideas are allowed to flow without distractions.
When we are consumed with everyday distractions — taking the kids to soccer practice or running an errand for the boss, our minds are cluttered with thoughts. It is when we start to unwind — by doing simple things that relax us, like taking a shower or going for a walk, our creative juices that have been standing at the gate of our subconscious are ready to be allowed to start the race. Our subconscious is the source of our creativity.
Ideas come easier when we allow our brains rest time, or start to work on something unrelated to our usual work.
Albert Einstein used to get away from his work and go to play his violin or a piano. His sister used to say that he almost lost himself in the music, and all of a sudden he would stand up and yell, “Ah Ha! I’ve got it!” Many people who work in creative arts — writers, artists, and even scientists, say they get their “Ah Ha” moments when they are not thinking about the problem, but have backed away and taken a break.
Sometimes our crotchety conscious mind can bully the subconscious into taking a back seat our mental yin and yang (conscious and unconscious minds) work as a team, although at different levels, and tasks are assigned to them based on their level of strength. The conscious mind is good with analyzing problems and details. The subconscious mind is better at making decisions, looking at the big picture, and being creative.
Our creative switch to our subconscious can be flipped if you can find a way to relax. For each person that method may be different. Sometimes sitting down and relaxing with a cup of soup can get your brain to clear and function better. Sleep, which is the time many people seem to recall having creative thoughts, allows your brain to rest and opens it up to new ideas and thoughts.
There is also meditation, creative games, learning new skills or even just putting your brain into neutral by doing repetitive tasks that don’t require a lot of conscious thinking that helps to activate your subconscious mind.
It may be strange to think that our conscious and unconscious mind is able to work on the same task simultaneously. For example: when a writer puts their thoughts on paper (or on a computer) it requires both the conscious and subconscious parts of the brain. The keyboarding requires you to think of what you want to write, while the subconscious does the job of putting your actions into words — literally! Your conscious mind actually slows down the subconscious. Think of how much slower you type when you have to think about what keys to press.
Give your subconscious a little more slack, and not let our conscious mind take over as often. If you allow both sides to come to a solution together the objective will probably turn out better than you had expected.
About the author:
Ron White is a two-time U.S.A. Memory Champion and memory training expert. As a memory speaker he travels the world to speak before large groups or small company seminars, demonstrating his memory skills and teaching others how to improve their memory, and how important a good memory is in all phases of your life.
Scott Berkin — Why You Get Your Best Ideas IN the Shower: http://www.scottberkun.com/blog/2011/why-you-get-ideas-in-the-shower/
Creative Games.net — How to Boost Your Unconscious Creativity: http://creativitygames.net/creative-thinking/144-how-to-boost-your-unconscious-creativity