How to Keep the Creative Juices Flowing After Summer Vacation

Science confirms that "aha!" moments are more likely to occur in new settings since the brain is processing new sets of information, mixing it with established knowledge in a process essential to creativity.

Hopefully you took a summer vacation. Nothing recharges your batteries better and helps you get a new perspective on your life and work. If you did, no doubt you had a moment or two of clarity, especially if you found yourself away from home and in unfamiliar surroundings. Science has confirmed that those "aha!" moments are more likely to occur in new settings since the brain is processing new sets of information, mixing it with established knowledge in a process essential to what we call "creativity".


Forbes contributor Carmine Gallo recommends several ways that employees and business leaders can provide a more creative work environment. 

Schedule a "mini brain vacation" by extending the length of a business trip by a day to see the local (and unfamiliar) sights, or add a vacation day to a three-day weekend in order to get out of town.

Adopt a "Results Only Work Environment" (ROWE) that measure success according to what gets done rather than by how many hours are logged at the office. This frees employees to do their work in novel surroundings, increasing the likelihood of finding creative solutions.

Loosening the travel budget can pay dividends if it exposes employees to new situations, i.e. beyond the walls of an inner-city conference center.

Finally, keep off-site schedules bearable. Inspiration happens when we allow our minds to wander and find new connections. A day out of the office shouldn't be planned minute-by-minute from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m.

In his Big Think interview, Samsung's head of strategic marketing David Steel explains how empowering (design) employees is one of the company's essential business strategies:

Read more at Forbes

Photo credit: Shutterstock

A dark matter hurricane is crashing into Earth

Giving our solar system a "slap in the face"

Surprising Science
  • A stream of galactic debris is hurtling at us, pulling dark matter along with it
  • It's traveling so quickly it's been described as a hurricane of dark matter
  • Scientists are excited to set their particle detectors at the onslffaught
Keep reading Show less

We are heading for a New Cretaceous, not for a new normal

The climate change we're witnessing is more dramatic than we might think.

Image credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center from Greenbelt, MD, USA
Surprising Science

A lazy buzz phrase – 'Is this the new normal?' – has been doing the rounds as extreme climate events have been piling up over the past year. To which the riposte should be: it's worse than that – we're on the road to even more frequent, more extreme events than we saw this year.

Keep reading Show less

New study reveals what time we burn the most calories

Once again, our circadian rhythm points the way.

Photo: Victor Freitas / Unsplash
Surprising Science
  • Seven individuals were locked inside a windowless, internetless room for 37 days.
  • While at rest, they burned 130 more calories at 5 p.m. than at 5 a.m.
  • Morning time again shown not to be the best time to eat.
Keep reading Show less