Software “tools for thought” can amplify your thinking, but sometimes the secret to a creative workflow is as low-tech as it gets: going for a stroll.
Absolutely! I get my best ideas on a walk - also just bobbing up and down in reasonably shallow water at the beach. My late husband and I used to formulate plot-lines for plays this way. We'd then write them up and they would gradually evolve but the initial ideas emerged from the water! (Hat-tip to Darwin.) PS My favourite NYC Park is Bryant Park. I miss it. One day ...
Hello Steven, great article.
Could you please point me to Henri Poincaré's autobiography?
I'm curious to know if walking while participating in a virtual meeting or phone conversation has the same effect as an in-person meeting. It seems that being outdoors and moving is a good thing, however, perhaps the distraction of participating online may lead to some negative effects.
I have slowly lost the ability to walk without paying close attention to the act of walking (form of muscle wasting). I used to love walking and letting my mind wander. Now I'm looking for a way to do the same in a pool. But the pool isn't an environment you can have a meeting in with just anyone
Again very insightful Steven. I wonder..., well two things actually: 1. Since walking is also alleged to slow down the (uptake of) dementia, might there be similar 'neuro-chemical'? root causes to that: seemingly simple activity keeping the brain occupied in mysterious ways and thereby not only speeding up generation, but also slowing down degeneration (!!), 2. Since I am an avid cycler (no race bike, but very decent distances), I wonder, do you have any idea or knowledge of or hunches/ sources about the effects of cycling on creativity? I.e. is it the specific act of walking that is the creativity-stimulus, or would other normal-paced physical activities do? I imagine you may not have the direct answer to either question but you might have ideas and who knows they trigger your curiosity as well :-)
Walking has always served me well. I walk about 15k steps a day: morning, usually over lunch, and late afternoon before dinner. The first two walks are essential to my workday. I often draft documents, using voice to text or handle calls with my team. If you find me in a bad mood it’s usually because something interfered with my walk.