Need to get over a creative block or trigger more “eureka!” moments? Try stepping away to do something as mindless as cleaning.
Citing work from researchers at University of California, Davis, Brit + Co explains that doing chores you don’t have to think about gives your brain freedom to think creatively:
It all comes down to brain structure and a lot of neurological processes. Essentially, when you’re vacuuming or wiping down counters, the part of your brain responsible for muscle memory is ignoring the part of your brain responsible for creative thinking, allowing it to do its own thing (like pondering that next big creative breakthrough!). When our hands are distracting our brain, this “autopilot” function actually boosts levels of thinking and creative reasoning. But don’t worry — you don’t have to spend your whole day in the shower or scrubbing floors. Menial tasks like walking the dog, coloring or watering your garden all let your brain focus on other matters while you enjoy “mindless” physical tasks.
Cleaning is also a great way to procrastinate, though, so be careful not to take your cleaning sessions too far.
Photo by Ryan Harvey.