Our thoughts are shackled by the familiar

An interesting excerpt from the book ‘Imagine – How Creativity Works’ by Jonah Lehrer (from chapter 5).

… Our thoughts are shackled by the familiar. The brain is a neural tangle of near-infinite possibility, which means that it spends a lot of time and energy choosing what not to notice. As a result, creativity is traded for efficiency; people think in literal prose, not symbolist poetry. It’s not until we feel distant from the problems – far from our usual haunts – that the chains of cognition are loosened, and the insight becomes obvious.

The author points to research which indicates that increased creativity appears to be a side effect of experiencing different environments over time, even for a short while. When we escape from the place we spend the most time, the mind is suddenly made aware of all those errant ideas previously suppressed.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s