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INFOGRAPHIC: Eureka! Six mindful methods to crack creative blocks

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INFOGRAPHIC: Eureka! Six mindful methods to crack creative blocks

RISHI Rajpopat had reached the end of his tether.

The Cambridge University student had spent months trying to decode an ancient Sanskrit text as part of his PhD and got nowhere. He decided to take a break.

A month of rest and recuperation followed – exercise, praying and meditation.

Begrudgingly, he came back to the text and within minutes the 2,500-year problem all started to make sense.

Rishi’s breakthrough moment follows in the famous historical footsteps of Newton’s apple-induced gravity epiphany or Archimedes’ eureka moment in the bath.

And they are far from accidental.

Embracing the power of mindful moments can be the secret to unloading a surprising creative cargo.

INFOGRAPHIC: Eureka! Six mindful methods to crack creative blocks

We do our best thinking when we’re not thinking.

When we let our unconscious mind take the reins – the default mode network – our brains go wild – connecting thoughts, processing information, retrieving memories, instigating ideas.

Mindful moments serve as a crucible for creativity and our Eureka moments.

Here are six ways to turn on your mind’s screensaver and release incredible ideas…

  1. Walk this way

Walks and fresh air to clear the mind have unlocked inspiration for many a philosopher, writer and inventor. Combining the calm of nature, a stimulating visual setting and the rhythm of walking can help our brain reach a more meditative state – ideal conditions for unexpected connections and solutions.

  1. It’s child’s play

Cushion and pillow dens. Doctors-v-cowboy fancy dress mash-ups. Lego universes.

There is seemingly no end to a child’s imagination when playing and adults should take inspiration from their mindset. Where we lose track of time and become fully immersed in an activity, we release our creative brains and trigger a flow state that is fertile ground for ideas to surface.

  1. Daydream believer

Just letting our minds wander is truly one of the most powerful creative exercises we can immerse ourselves in. When we put the brain into screensaver mode, solutions often seem to pop up from the blue as our mind tidies up thoughts and making sense of the information inside. A bit of cloud-gazing can reveal shapes and pictures to spark creative thoughts and a good nap is also great for letting the brain do some important processing.

  1. Power shower

It really isn’t just a cliché that the best ideas seem to hit you in the shower. It provides the perfect conditions for our default mode network to take over – no distractions, white noise in the background, relaxing feeling. In this unique environment, our brainwaves shift, opening the door to creative insights and problem-solving.

  1. Work it out

Exercise offers so many worthwhile benefits, but its creative power is often overlooked. A good run, swim or gym sesh get the blood pumping to all parts, including the brain, and teamed up with a rush of endorphins, moments of clarity and flashes of inspiration can suddenly appear. And it’s great for reducing stress levels and improving mental health too, which will only help to clear our minds further.

  1. A clean break

We’ll often be happy to put off cleaning. It’s never the most appealing of activities but if you look at it from a creative perspective, you might turn to the duster more often. Cleaning can create more of those ideal conditions for an unconscious mind takeover and all the inspiration benefits that come with it. So whether it’s hoovering, gardening or hanging washing, embrace housework as a surprising and secret mindful moment.

Try out these different mindful moments, see which works for you and build in time for them as essential components of your creative process.

 

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