Helping Leaders Achieve Greater Influence, Higher Engagement & Increased Results

Why Leaders Should Create a Virtual Bathroom

Virtual Bathroom

Every business needs new ideas, creativity and innovation to survive, but creativity cannot be commanded! Telling someone to go and be creative is like telling the proverbial horse to drink when you have led it to water!

But understanding brain waves may hold the clue.
Being creative or in an ideas generating state of mind is very much down to the frequency our brain waves.
The electrical signals in our brain actually oscillate at a specific frequency (which can be measured by an EEG), and this frequency changes depending what ‘mode’ our brain is in. These ‘modes’ or ‘states’ have been researched, named and categorised in terms of their function. The states are :-

Beta – 16 to 31Hz Being alert, conscious, high awareness, daily life, active & busy.
Alpha – 8 to 15Hz Daydreaming, relaxed, visualising, creative and idea generating.
Theta – 4 to 7Hz Usually associated with sleep
Delta – 0 to 4Hz Usually associated with deep sleep.

From that it is clear that brains in the alpha state are much more likely to be creative and have new ideas. So how can you get your staff brains into alpha state?

Well unfortunately there is no switch or dial that we can readily throw to get the brain into the right state but there are certain things that will encourage it.

You may have noticed that when in the shower or bath you often have a great new idea or think of a creative way to solve and existing problem. That’s because the bath and shower are the common places where your brain will go into alpha state automatically.So let’s look at why that is.
The most likely reason is the warm water relaxes you. Beta state is not needed as there is not much to do and focus on. The washing routine is embedded in your Basal Ganglia as a habit so you don’t need to think about that. Very quickly you can slip into daydreaming which encourages the shift from Beta to Alpha.
This can also happen when driving a familiar route or doing familiar simple tasks or when just dropping off to sleep or just waking up from sleep.

One way of helping the creativity in your business would be to create a “virtual bathroom”, and of course I don’t mean one with a bath in it, I mean an area or room where people can go to relax and think, somewhere warm and comfortable, I don’t mean a coffee area, somewhere where people can go to think, daydream, visualise. Somewhere where there are no distractions so no tv, phones, ipads and no feeling like they are being monitored.
The chances are you will have created a place where people can go for creative thought and new ideas, problem solving, just like they would relaxing in their bath!
So how are you going to help the brains of your team get into creative mode when they need to?

By Peter Green

Peter is a speaker, workshop facilitator and author. Founder of Limbic Leadership, helping front line leaders harness the brain for massive influence, higher engagement and exceptional results from their teams. Leadership Development Grounded in Neuroscience!

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