organized desk

Can an organized desk kill your creativity?

March 12, 2014

organized desk

How your desk and your brain are connected

It seems reasonable to think that an organized desk can help you function more efficiently because you will not be wasting time looking for misplaced items. However, when you need channel your creative side, your best bet is to move away from your organize desk. In fact, a study by the University of Minnesota states that disorder can lead to more productive creativity, so it makes sense to walk away from your organized environment in order to facilitate creative thinking.

A blog post on Buffer suggests that one way to maintain a harmonious creative space is to get a second desk for your work space and let it be messy.

If you do not have the space for a second desk, any small space where you can indulge your less-than-organized side will be beneficial. Why? John Cleese talks about creativity and how you can unleash it; one of his main points is a how creativity functions like a tortoise.

It needs to poke its head out, look around, and make sure everything is okay before it lets loose. If your creativity looks around and sees a super organized space, or senses tension and anxiety, it will go back in the “shell” and refuse to play along until you make the necessary changes.

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So what to do for your inner tortoise

You need to find your creativity a space where it can thrive: a comfy corner, a messy desk, or a window seat are all places that signal your brain that this is a safe place to unleash your creativity because it is not a “busy” space (something your brain associates with work).

Many creative people enjoy distractions while they are working, some do not. No one rule is going to work for every one, but, if you have writer’s block, brainstorming block, or have simple reached a creative impasse, finding a place where your brain can relax and release your creative talents could prove to be quite beneficial.

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Jennifer Walpole is a Senior Staff Writer at The American Genius and holds a Master's degree in English from the University of Oklahoma. She is a science fiction fanatic and enjoys writing way more than she should. She dreams of being a screenwriter and seeing her work on the big screen in Hollywood one day.


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