207 gaining insight

bears | year of creative habits I'm continuing to read Imagine by Jonah Leher. I'm still just in the beginning pages of the book but finding little things that I want to make note of. There's some interesting information about insight--a sudden leap in consciousness. It's that aha! moment when the solution suddenly pops into your head. Researchers have found that you can't force insight. You can think and analyze and try to force yourself toward a solution and it just doesn't work in many situations. All the things that we might do to make ourselves better at focusing (like say caffeine) are keeping us from having insight. Focused work tends to direct our attention outward toward the details of a problem. Insights allow us to see the connections. So what helps us gain insights? A relaxed state of mind. A positive mood. Research shows that an ideal time for insights is the early morning, shortly after waking. The drowsy brain is more open to unconventional ideas. That immediately reminded me of what my friend Stefanie Seltner said when I interviewed her in April:

“My favourite time to work is early in the morning when dream and reality are still in touch and my hands are still a little bit cold.”

So beautifully stated. Have a relaxing and happy weekend friends.