Even though we don’t know exactly what makes extraordinary people, brain science offers us clues as to why some minds are exceptional . . . and have changed the world.
People like Leonardo da Vinci, Marie Curie, John Coltrane, Pablo Picasso, Frida Kahlo, Ada Lovelace, Nikola Tesla, Elon Musk, and Albert Einstein knew how to find the inspiration to fuel their creative power.
But how did they do it?
Here’s what we know about what makes great minds creative and brilliant.
It’s well known that having a balanced right and left brain enhances mind power. Neuroscientist and research director at the Marcus Institute of Integrated Health, Andrew Newberg uses diffusion tensor imaging (an MRI contrast technique) to map neural pathways in the brains of super smart, creative people.
According to Dr. Newberg, there’s more communication going on between the left and right hemispheres of the brain in people who are highly intelligent. “There’s more flexibility in their thought processes, more contributions from different parts of the brain.” (What Makes a Genius?)
So what can you do to balance your brain?
Is it possible to access and activate our inner Einstein? And if so, how do we develop the creative genius part of the brain ?
With the development of current neuroscience research, came the ability to physically see what happens in our brain when we turn our attention inward. The neuroimaging findings show that when our minds wander . . . there’s more room for creative growth because the frontal cortex (the part of your brain that’s responsible for being reasonable and self-conscious) goes offline.
Dr. Srini Pillay, brain researcher and author of the new book Tinker, Dabble, Doodle, Try, offers great insight on how to unleash your true potential by unlocking the power of your unfocused mind.
The top three activities, according to Dr. Pillay, that will help you find your inspiration, creativity, and focus are: doodling, daydreaming, and dabbling.
Pretty cool, right? The idea here is that to get inspired, creative, and focused you must allow for unstructured free time—”unfocused” time and space to let go and let be . . . to wander off aimlessly into the imaginative corners of your mind.
Ready to tap into the full creative force within yourself and learn how to find focus? Start by adding these three activities to your list of daily habits for success.
1. The art of doodling.
Remember doodling in the classroom when you were 13? It helped you to focus and retain important information, right? It shouldn’t have received such a bad rap.
This once frowned upon art helped you access brain frequencies that contribute in the removal of obstacles. And drawing figures absentmindedly not only gets the creative juices flowing . . . it creates inspiring opportunities for growth and opens up the neural circuits for memory.
Think of it as a tool rather than as a distraction. Nowadays, teachers are encouraging this form of art by having students sketch while reading to them, or during a short lecture.
Doodling is an excellent technique for training the brain to unfocus. By taking part in the art of doodling, you’ll help your brain to reset itself to function better and more productively. Use this technique whenever you need to figure out how to find your inspiration, creativity, and focus.
2. The practice of daydreaming.
Contrary to popular belief, daydreaming is not an unproductive waste of time. Daydreaming, a.k.a. positive constructive daydreaming (PCD), can sharpen your mind. And having your head “in the clouds” every now and again isn’t a bad thing. It can actually build your brain power.
Daydreaming usually occurs naturally . . . before you drift off for your afternoon nap, right? (Napping is another great way to enhance your creativity and productivity, by the way.)
If you don’t have the luxury to take naps now that you’re all grown up, think back to your childhood . . . such bliss.
Now that you remember what that felt like, incorporate at least 30 minutes of daydreaming into your work day. BONUS: You may end up taking a power nap, too!
So if you want to overcome limiting beliefs that keep you separated from your inner genius, you’ve got to start daydreaming more. You never know when your brilliant “aha” moment might strike.
3. The act of dabbling.
It’s O.K. to be a Jack or Jane of all trades. That’s right! Go ahead and dabble in something you’re interested in . . . it may lead you to your masterpiece. And in the interim, you’ll learn some new skills along with developing a new cognitive rhythm around the art of balancing focus with unfocus.
With dabbling in other areas of expertise, you’ll begin to think outside the box of your current reality; you’ll figure out how to find your inspiration . . . and you’ll discover what you need to fuel your true purpose. Picasso found his style by studying what Einstein was into.
How do your extracurricular activities contribute to your life’s work?
Dabbling in a new endeavor—whether a hobby or fantasy—disrupts your habitual and reactive thinking, helping you find new solutions to old problems.
Dr. Srini Pillay
It’s not necessary to wait until you’re well into your golden years to do something that you’ve always wanted to do. Grow a garden, take up tai chi, audit a physics class, turn your doodles into paintings, develop an idea for your dream business . . .
The possibilities are endless.
Dabbling is healthy cross-training for your brain. The more you use your mind and explore your curiosities, the closer you’ll come to reaching your full potential as a human being.
When you bring these success techniques into your life, you activate the unfocus circuits of your brain—which enhances your creativity. This is how you get unstuck, travel outside your comfort zone, and move in the direction of your dreams.
Find out if you’re maximizing your full potential or falling into hidden psychological traps that are hindering your creativity, productivity, and overall success.
Join us for a Masterclass with John Assaraf and Dr. Srini Pillay to discover more life-changing secrets inside your amazing, subconscious mind.
During the special masterclass, you’ll learn from leading success experts about the latest methods to change your brain and accelerate your personal happiness and financial well-being.
We’d love to hear from you!
Please leave your comments and/or questions in the space below.
(EDITOR’S NOTE: The video below is an interview with John Assaraf and Srini Pillay that aired on Facebook Live. They explore the reasons why unfocusing is the key to being more productive, what fun activities you can do to unfocus your mind, how to use daydreaming to solve your problems, why “unfocus” makes you more likely to accomplish your goals, and why doodling is important for success and learning. Check it out!)