If you feel a writer’s block coming, or find yourself in a serious creative rut at work, there’s a surefire way to improve your imagination and creative thinking. Just blast some happy music and enjoy the creativity benefits in no time!
A new study from Radboud University in the Netherlands and the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia set out to find out the best way to improve people’s creativity, and soon enough discovered that a few upbeat tunes can make a world of difference.
Study participants were asked to either sit in silence or listen to one of four styles of music: calm, happy, sad, and anxious. When they were then asked to solve a task, the people who listened to happy music — Antonio Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons,” specifically — were found to have the best ideas.
“Creativity is the process of generating new ideas and being able to develop them into imaginative solutions,” explained Dr Sam Ferguson, co-author of the study. And it’s the music that allows your brain to become flexible, Ferguson explains, and lets you imagine new scenarios and solutions to problems. Boom, productivity!
And truth be told, getting those creative juices flowing is no easy feat. Raise your hand if you’ve ever struggled to come up with a witty one-liner or a laugh-out-loud story only to find yourself completely strapped for ideas (raises both hands).
So maybe the key to finding an innovative answer is simple: plug in your headphones (try any of our favorite Bluetooth ones), find your happy-themed Spotify playlist (like this one from Kate Kendall), and enjoy the boost in mood and brain power. It could translate into more successful projects at work.
And if you need an even extra helping of creativity, follow the two-hour rule or our favorite 5-minute meditation for an even more effective dose. Look out world, because your creativity has just been mega unleashed!