A must-read article for people truly interested in the nature of creativity. Big shout out to Robin Wiley for pointing it in my direction.
Would love to know your insights and connections. Marvelous piece.
Use psychologist Abraham Maslow’s inspiration to bolster your leadership and facilitation as WCIW 2015 catalyst. Other leaders may also find this wisdom helpful when looking for ways to embed the creative attitude in day-to-day life.
Here’s the study
A 2004 study by David Beversdorf, an assistant professor in Ohio State’s department of neurology, and Jessa Alexander, a research assistant in the department, revealed a correlation between medical students’ stress levels and their performance on various types of tests.
Beversdorf and Alexander gave 19 medical students three tests, one or two days before a midterm, a time when the students attested to being under large amounts of stress.
In a memory test, students were asked to repeat strings of numbers up to nine in length. In the first creative problem-solving test, the same students were given three words and then asked to think of one word that could be combined with all three to form a compound word or short phrase.
In the last test Beversdorf and Alexander had the students fill in the only blank spot on a grid that had a series of shapes and symbols. The medical students were given a list of possible solutions and asked to choose the shape or symbol that best fit with the other shapes in the grid.
Students did considerably better on the memorization test, indicating that they were not able to think as flexibly during times of stress.
“We were curious in a real-world setting whether stressers may be reacting to (norepinephrine), causing changes in cognitive performance,” Beversdorf said.
Norepinephrine is a chemical compound found in the brain that has long been identified with subconscious response to threatening situations.
The researchers administered similar tests to the same students one week after their midterms, a period of time when they were less likely to be stressed. The students performed slightly worse on the memory test, yet did better on the word and grid test.
“We have done studies with artificial stressers in the lab,” Alexander said. “I wanted to look at a more natural stresser in a setting that occurs normally to see how identical we could get to (the lab results).”
Other experts at OSU were not surprised by the results of the study.
“When individuals are faced with a challenging task, they are less likely to perform well in complex situations,” said Jennifer Graham, a postdoctoral fellow at OSU’s Institute of Behavioral Medicine Research. “The nature of the two situations here is relevant only in that it indicates recalling a list of numbers is a simpler task than complex problem solving.”
In order to add more validity to their results, Beversdorf and Alexander are currently in the process of gathering a larger field of participants for similar research to be conducted this winter.
Beversdorf is also conducting research involving functional MRI scanning to measure the effects of norepinephrine, as well as studying the effects of cocaine on cognitive processes.
Yes, that’s right.
Who is the person or who are the people/groups leading the charge of celebrating creativity and innovation at your location from April 15 -21, 2015?
Don’t you agree that it be great to give everyone in your office or organization a creative ‘boost’ of unbridled joy during the World Creativity and Innovation Week celebrations?
Findings from a global 2012 survey conducted by Adobe, State of Creativity Study, (pdf here) support doing just that. Their global survey unveiled that
So here’s your opportunity to buck the trend for only one week every year: to celebrate the talents your people, customers, and/or suppliers have to generate new ideas, make new decisions and take new actions that make the world a better place and make their place in the world better too. WCIW April 15 – 21 is a time to explore your creativity, and help others do the same. It’s great when there’s some unbridled joy in the mix too.
So whoever your WCIW rep is your organization, make sure they subscribe to this blog for support and ideas. They can join our groups - World Creativity and Innovation Week Global (on Facebook) and World Creativity (on LinkedIn) – for updates and other connections.
Appoint someone today to be your go-to person for WCIW 2015 and give them the opportunity to create something wonderful and meaningful for your culture and organization.
BTW, What do you think about our hosting a world teleconference the week after WCIW 2015 to compare notes among organizational reps?
A favourite technique for idea generating is to make connections and gather insights through reviewing word lists. I call it a Word Dance. You can use this technique to generate ideas for your April 15 – 21 WCIW 2015 celebration.
Years ago, I did a Word Dance on create, creator, creativity, creative, problem, solving and creation using the Oxford Thesaurus. Here’s the list for your use. It would be great to know your 5 words and how they combine to create your WCIW 2015 seed of celebration.
How to use these lists: Scan through and stay open to be energized by a few words. Select a few, maybe 5 from the entire collection. Then combine those words to create the way or ways you might celebrate WCIW 2015.
Note: Transcribing this list for you was a fascinating experience. Insights bubbled up.
Insight 1: The ask for WCIW 2015 and beyond. To create a way to celebrate creativity and innovation. Read through the CREATE word-list to get inside what that might mean for you. Autonomy rocks! Make sure to share your insights too. I think this is a great exercise.
Insight 2: The importance of clarity because each word – create, creator, creative, problem, solving and creation – has so many different meanings and associations.
What are your five words? What ideas come to mind for ways to celebrate WCIW 2015?