More Testimonials to Sleep’s Impact on Creativity

In his recent Writer’s Almanac, Garrison Keillor talks about the poet Li-Young Lee‘s contention that his brain hunts up ideas while he sleeps:

“Lee says his writing process isn’t very disciplined, even though he feels he’s on duty 24 hours a day: ‘When I wake up, there’s something in me even beyond my wakeful mind that’s been paying attention all night long to the divine and the uncanny. So the minute I get up, I feel I am already involved in the writing process, and I just grope my way to my study and see what happens.'”

This is consistent with what I talk about in my presentations and what research says about how the brain mulls things over when you sleep.  In that semi-awake haze in the morning, before you start to focus on what you think you should be thinking about, more creative ideas are likely to be floating around. Be ready for them with a notebook and pencil by your bed!


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