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Even a genius can come to a standstill, working on a difficult mental task. What to do when you need fresh ideas, but nothing comes to mind? Oddly enough, the best way to move forward is to stop and give the brain a break. That's what they say about the authors of the book "At the peak".
Brain on vacation: a network of passive mode
In 1929, the German psychologist Hans Berger conducted a series of experiments using EEG. Attaching sensors to the heads of patients, Berger asked them to solve math problems, draw or solve puzzles, and recorded the electrical activity of their brain.
During one of the experiments of Berger left the apparatus of eets on while the patient was resting between jobs. To his surprise, the scientist noticed that the needles of eets, registered the electrical activity of the brain stopped moving. On the contrary, they continued to noticeably vibrate.
In those days, scientists agree that the brain essentially shuts off when not performing a specific task. But Berger saw that the patient's brain retains a high activity, and although the subject did not perform any work.
While you are resting, your brain is actively working.
When Berger published the results of their research, the part in which it was told about brain activity during rest, his colleagues ignored: the scientific community was more concerned about what happens when the brain is busy.
the Following seventy years, all of the studies also focused on what happens in the brain when we perform strenuous, demanding attention tasks. This was the case until 2011, while the neurologist Markus Reichle is presenting not engaged in a mysterious, passive activity, which Berger discovered decades ago.
Using MRI, Reichle is presenting found that when people "shut down" and "head in the clouds", a certain part of the brain maintains a constant activity. He called it a network of passive mode.
it is Interesting that as soon as patients Reichle is presenting began to focus again, the network is passive mode off and it again joined the network of active mode.
Reichle is presenting vacationer attracted to the brain more inquisitive scientists. Their research shows that even when we think our brain is "unconscious" network passive mode continues to work, and our minds don't notice.
this system — which "turns on" when we "shut down", is responsible for creative inspiration and a breakthrough.
Eureka! How to turn inspiration
Remember the times when you were especially creative. Where were you, when your head suddenly developed answers to complex problems over which you have struggled for a long time? It is likely that at that moment you have not even tried to solve them. More likely that you are just daydreaming, taking a shower or bath.
maybe the best ideas come to you when you run or walk. Many respected philosophers, from Kierkegaard to Thoreau, believed daily walk something sacred, the key to generating new ideas.
"I think that my thoughts begin to flow at the moment when I start to move my legs," Thoreau recorded in his diary.
Lin-Manuel Miranda, the author of the successful Broadway show "Hamilton," describes it this way: "a Good idea comes to you when you are doing a million things at once. A good idea comes in moments of relaxation. In the shower, or when I draw squiggles in a notebook, or when I play trains with my son. When your brain is on the other side."
I Noticed something important that unites these observations? The best ideas often come in those small gaps between conscious mental activity, when the brain is resting.
the Rest — one of the best ways to enable creative thinking.
Science confirms this. The researchers found: most of the waking hours we spend in active thinking, however, about 40 percent of creative ideas arise during respite.
the Most creative breakthroughs occur in the normal way. First, we immerse ourselves in work, thinking actively on a particular topic. Our conscious brain takes us quite far, but still we often can't find that missing piece of the puzzle. When it comes to this features, the best thing to do is to stop, even though it seems counter-productive.
Often, ceasing to actively and consciously think and allowing the brain to rest, we magically find the missing element. The magic of creative discovery depends on the ability to stop thinking. To understand this secret, we must turn to the difference between the conscious and the subconscious.
Our brain's creative
When we are actively working on something, our conscious brain (the network of active mode) directs the play. It acts linearly and logically, by the principle of "if — then". If so, it is the commercials, and if not, apparently, otherwise.
basically this kind of linear thinking has served us well. But from time to time, we get stuck. We can sit and stare at a computer screen or a whiteboard, trying to think of something, but yet we continue to try, we have nothing.
Only when we stop trying, our conscious brain shuts off and the thing in their hands takes our subconscious brain (passive mode).
the Subconscious brain works very differently than the conscious. He departs from the principles of linear thinking and acts more randomly, getting information from those areas of the brain that are inaccessible when we are consciously working on something.
These parts of the brain like an endless jungle surrounding the road if / then, which runs our conscious brain. There and live our creative ideas.
the subconscious mind — the storehouse of creative ideas.
Neuroscientists have discovered that the subconscious mind is constantly working in the background. But it turned out Reichle is presenting, revelations of the subconscious are beginning to come to light only when we disengage the conscious brain, passing into a state of rest.
the Mathematician David Goss on their own experience, that leisure breeds creativity. Goss is Professor Emeritus at Ohio state University, he received international recognition for his revolutionary work in the field of number theory.
He managed to build an entire parallel world in which the impossible math problems was made possible. Where Goss found inspiration? Here's what he says: "All these crazy ideas came to me through the subconscious, when I worked on the bike or just walking. Some of the ideas really were insane. And some turned out to be not such a madman."
He set aside the crazy ideas for the future. And not so insane? They have become the second language of mathematics. No doubt, Goss incredibly powerful conscious mind. But no less admiration deserves is his subconscious mind, his ability to break away from work and relax.
"the Subconscious is a very powerful thing, says Goss. — To pore over the work is for the sake of what happens when you stop".
How to get out of mental impasse.
Here are a few rules reboot of the brain.
When you are working on a difficult mental task, and hit a dead end, stop working.
— Stop doing what you were doing at least five minutes.
— the harder the task, the longer it needs to be a break.
— If the task has deprived you of your strength, think about the break until the next morning.
— During breaks, if you don't go to sleep, do things that do not require or do not require conscious thinking. For example, listen to music, take a shower, take a walk, be in nature, wash the dishes, proscrastinate pictures.
— During a break you can come up with a great idea. But even if you don't cry out "Eureka!" your subconscious mind still worked. When you return to the task, then, is likely to move forward.
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