why open spaces can help you become more creative

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Do you want to become more creative?

Do you want to become more creative?
Do you want to come up with brilliant new ideas?

Then visit places with open spaces more often! It was found that people who get exposed to open spaces regularly don't have problems coming up with creative ideas. It was also found that those people were more able to find out their long term goals and to develop a good future vision.

So what's in an open space that helps a person become more creative? Why visiting a park or sitting in front of the sea can you help you think clearly about the future?

To understand how this works you first need to know how the mind processes thoughts.

How your brain processes thoughts

Ever tried to think about an important issue only to find yourself thinking about something totally different?

All the thoughts in your brain are connected to each other at certain points and that's why its very common that you unintentionally jump from one thought to another. For example, you could start thinking about your car that needs to be fixed then suddenly you find yourself thinking about your friend who has a new car then in few moments you might find yourself thinking about a friend of that friend that you don't like. (see also How to be in control of your thoughts)

Because thoughts can change that easily its always recommended to think using a pen and a paper so that you can direct your thoughts towards a certain area and prevent them from shifting away. (see also Where do automatic thoughts come from)

Now there is one other major important factor that affects the way your thoughts change which is external input. Suppose you were thinking about your job while walking in the street then saw an advertisement that had a person who looked like one of your friends.

In such a case there is a great chance that your mind will shift its attention from the problem you were thinking about to a totally different one just because of that external input (Assuming that the input was really important to you)

So every single distraction coming from the external environment can shift your thoughts and force you to think about different topics.

Why open spaces can help you become more creative

When you are at an open space the possibility of getting distracted by an external input becomes much lower and thus you find yourself more able to stay focused on the topics you are thinking about. (see also How to focus on your goals)

Walking down in a busy street for few minutes while keeping an open eye will let you realize how hundreds of distractions await everybody who tries to think about an important matter.

Its like trying to do something very important on Facebook while getting a new notification every second. In addition to this open spaces promote creativity by helping people be in a relaxed state that allows them to access all of their mind's resources.

It was found that stress and other unwanted emotions can limit the person's ability to access the full resources of his mind and that's why many people take wrong decisions under pressure.

So to sum it up, visit an a place that has an open space at least once a week and you will become much more creative.

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