This article talks about how a recent study showed that participating in leisure activities might effect the risk of dementia in the elderly. They found frequent social dancing to be the most effective at staving off dementia. Even though I’m not looking at dancing I could look at the musical aspect of this.
“Researchers theorized that activities requiring split-second, rapid-fire decision making improve mental acuity by increasing brain plasticity, whereas activities relying on memorized patterns lack that benefit. Being decisive and quickly adapting to new contexts forces your brain to constantly rewire its neural pathways, making your thinking more flexible, adaptive, and resilient. And it’s this mental resilience that not only helps you stave off mental illness, but also kick-starts your creative thinking and problem-solving abilities.”
Try a New Experience to Help You Think Creatively
Richard Powers, a researcher and full-time instructor at Stanford University’s Dance Division, coined this aphorism for the creative process:
“The more stepping stones there are across the creek,
the easier it is to cross in your own style.”
The trick is to create those mental stepping stones, and find those many alternate paths to a creative solution. Involve yourself in activities and situations that force you to think differently and explore new ways of crossing the creek.