Creativity and Your Brain

Creativity is a process that involves three thinking patterns: Verbal language, music and math, as well as visual thinking. Verbal creatures thrive on words. If you can, for instance, imagine a world without words. Just how the brain functions was somewhat of a mystery, until recently. Little was known about how the brain processes creativity, about what functions are involved in the creative processes.  One facet of a creative mind is mind wandering. If one so chooses to do so, wind wandering can function as an escape from boredom. It is well to know that, at least for once, something that some of us partake of could be construed as ‘excapism.’ Along with this understanding, you might be pleased to know that mind wanderers score high on creativity. Mind wanderers  have been shown to be highly creative. However, while mind wandering is a healthy thing, it is good to be conscious of when one’s mind is wandering and make some attempt to catch the creative idea(s).  Mind wandering is generally best in small doses. This brings up a most interesting quote I once heard the Bealtle’s made. The lot of them were asked, ‘what taking LSD and various halucinogenics was like/about. The seemingly predominant response was, “Great. Marvelous. We could see so many things about life…phenominal insights about life, others and ourselves. The difficulty was that most of the time, we couldn’t wirte down or remember our experience.” My note: For those of you doing biological brain research, find a way for one to remember and perhaps ‘live’ one’s ‘extraordinary’ experience(s), when and if one so wishes.

Different brain areas are specialized for different functions. Listening to another’s voice for instance involves the temporal lobes, while watching others involves the occipital lobes. Thinking about lecture points involves the frontal lobes.  Emotional responses to others’ words involves the right hemisphere and the limbic system. The two hemispheres, left and right, are highly specialized . The left hemisphere is more important for verbal and symbolic processing, and it is the main language center for reading, writing, speaking and calculation. James Thurber’s ‘The secret life of Walter Mitty‘  is a good example of how the left hemisphere can function as an escape from boredom. The left hemisphere also analyzes the right visual field and controls the right hand. On the other hand, the right hemisphere is important for processing information such as reading a map and driving in unfamiliar surroundings. It is also involved with emotional perception and expression of language, such as sarcasm. The right hemisphere helps analyze the left visual field and controls the ‘other’ hand.