Where Do People Do Their Best Thinking?

You may remember that as part of my new book (Future Minds) I spoke to a few people asking them the question: “Where and when do you do your best thinking?” Here are some more responses…

“Over the decades, I think that my best thinking has occurred when I am visiting a foreign country, have my obligations out of the way, and am sitting in a pleasant spot – in a café, near a lake – with a piece of paper in front of me.”

“Usually when I am not working, and most often when I am travelling!”

“The most relevant (issue) for me is ideas needed for a piece of writing. As a drummer I am generally required to avoid deep thinking of any sort. So it’s probably whilst driving on a motorway, or on the start of a transatlantic flight. I think it’s to do with some distractions so that the thinking is a little freer – there is nothing worse than tidying the desk, sharpening a pencil and sensing the creative part of the brain creeping out the back door… also there’s a nice reward element that can be employed. No motorway fry up, or extra dry martini before there’s an opening line invented.”

“Lying in bed in the dark, with the white noise generator producing a soothing whoosh, I sometimes have a few seconds of modest insight.”

“I love doing household chores: loading the dishwasher, scrubbing the floors, scouring the pans; the polishing, the cleaning. All the time I am thinking of ways to improve upon the equipment; what would bring forward the technology.”

“I’ve had creative thoughts while walking down the street, in the shower, on the squash court, in the bathroom (of course), while shaving… .”

“I do my best thinking in bed – sometimes even when asleep. I wake up having solved a problem.”

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