How taking a little time off for yourself can help you find your muse
Taking time out from work to do some serious resting and relaxing can help recharge your creative batteries. Whether it is a two week vacation or just an hour of “me time”, this time out will help refresh your mind so that you will be better able to find that elusive muse.
Rest and Relaxation
You know that feeling you have after you come back from a nice two week vacation? You are tan, perhaps even a little burnt, you are relaxed, your mind freed from all the troubles that follow you during your usual 9 to 5 work routine. There is a new pep in your step and you are thinking clearer and better since, well… since the last time you took a little time off to get away from it all. Now, aren’t you glad that you listened to your wife’s threats and left the blackberry and laptop at home and spent your vacation actually relaxing?
Taking a little time out for yourself and getting away from the everyday pressures of work for can contribute a lot to your creative growth. While taking a little vacation is great idea, this time out can also come in the form of an everyday leisure such as a listening to music, settling into a good book, watching a movie, playing a video game, or even taking a bath.
Speaking of Baths
I am sure that you heard of the story of the Greek Scholar Archimedes and his bathtub. A long time ago during the golden Age of Greece, Archimedes was hanging out in Syracuse trying to figure out the best way to measure the density of a gold coin. There were apparently a lot of fake money in circulation at the time, and since the printing technology to insert holographic images in the money was still a few millennia away, the only way to do this was to measure the purity of gold which the coin was made of.
Long story short, good old Archimedes was wracking his fine Greek brain on a solution to this problem when he finally gave up and decided it was time for a nice leisurely bath. So, he went to wherever it was that Greeks bathed, got naked and stepped in the tub, watching as the water level rise as he submerged himself.
It suddenly dawned on him that the volume of water that was displaced in the tub must be equal to the volume of his own body. It then occurred to him that you could do the same thing to coin, and then you can figure out its density and hence purity by factoring the ratio of its volume and weight. This creative solution got him so excited that he ended up running down the streets naked shouting “Eureka! Eureka! I have it, I have it!”
While Archimedes sharp observation skills helped him to his discovery, if was not for his decision to take a little “me time” and hop in the tub for a nice soak, this timeless story might have never came about. There is no doubt that deciding to walk away from the problem and relax in the tub for a bit helped clear his mind of the mental blocks that were preventing from seeing the solution. By allowing yourself a little bit of leisure time, you too might be able to have your “Eureka!” moment.