I remember asking the team members already 10 years ago about where they get their best ideas. The variation of places runs from the toilet to the running track. The conversation stays about the same still today.
For me, the best places to have excellent ideas are right after gym driving by myself or in the water, regardless if it’s a shower or swimming pool. None of the places is the ideal to write or record your stuff. But from the car, you can always call someone, and with good luck, you’ll have an excellent sparring session about business ideas, pricing, or anything you’ve been thinking about lately.
Take a shower and get some ideas
72% of the people say they get their best ideas in the shower. Why? Alice Flaherty, one of the most renowned neuroscientists researching creativity, has an answer for us: The more dopamine that is released, the more creative we are, she says: “People vary in terms of their level of creative drive according to the activity of the dopamine pathways of the limbic system.”
Typical triggers for events that make us feel great and relaxed and therefore give us an increased dopamine flow are taking a warm shower, exercising, driving home, etc. The chances of having great ideas then are a lot higher.
The relaxed state of mind is the most crucial part of creative insights. That is why, for many people, the shower is the most relaxing part of the day. That’s also the place where you’re able to hear your own thoughts and listen to those great ideas that have been there all along.
Anatomy of ideas
But to get there, I wanted to dig deeper into the anatomy of ideas.
Quoting Tanner Christensen: “Using a puzzle analogy: we can’t expect to do a puzzle if we don’t first have the pieces to put it together.”
The first requirement for having any worthwhile ideas is that we should feed our brains with the information that can later connect to other bits of information.
Many people say that If you want to have good ideas, you must first have a lot of ideas. Sometimes when you’d need the idea, it feels like there are no ideas anywhere.
If you dig deeper into the anatomy of ideas, you’ll find out that to have a lot of ideas, you must provide your brain with stimulation through experiences. The more varied your experiences and sources of information, the more likely it is you will stumble on worthwhile and truly remarkable ideas.
Read, travel, watch movies, listen to music
So how to increase your information bits in your idea bank? Tanner Christensen has listed few tips: “Reading often and widely, traveling, conversations with friends and strangers, watching a variety of movies or listening to a broad swath of music, picking up new hobbies, trying something different for the sake of doing it differently, are all ways to provide your brain with new forms of information. That information can later be smashed together (consciously or unconsciously) to form new ideas.”
Since research says, conversations tend to be one of the most impactful means of creating new ideas and expanding existing ones, who are you planning to talk to today?