Stuck on a problem? Have a few beers. According to a new study by the University of Illinois, students with a blood alcohol level above .07 performed creative problem-solving tasks significantly better than their sober counterparts.
[John Belushi, via]
Since alcohol diminishes a person's capacity to focus attention, it allows him or her to think outside the box, and access what the study calls "remote ideas" - concepts they wouldn't normally come up with. So while it's probably a bad idea to show up wasted to a math final, a few beers could be the perfect catalyst to jump-start a brainstorming session.
For instance, add a word that goes with the following: blue, cottage, Swiss.
If you answered "cheese," you're probably drunk, because that would be a more creative answer than, say, "mountain," an answer a sober person might come up with. (I said "Heidi," which probably means I could use something more than a drink.)
Dr. Jennifer Wiley, a cognitive psychologist, discussed the results with the FABBS Foundation:
"Innovation may happen when people are not so focused. Sometimes it’s good to be distracted."
Perhaps Don Draper had it right -- a Mad Men martini lunch could be just the thing for stirring up those creative juices.
The study also found that groups are more successful at problem-solving if it's comprised of people with varying levels of intelligence. Said Wiley:
“The low-skilled students learned more, they asked more questions. And they made the high-skilled students think more deeply. So, the group did end up inventing their own formula.”
See? There's a reason stupid people exist, if only to encourage us to drink more.
For more information, go HERE.
Sorry, comments are currently unavailable
Monday, March 10
Sean MacPherson took some time out to chat with us about his new restaurant, so click through to find out why we\'re calling Margaux your new go-to in NYC.