• A couple of weeks ago, I headed down to Montezuma, Costa Rica to spend a week at Anamaya Resort for my “think week”, which consisted of a lot of yoga, meditation, reading, and eating. If you haven’t taken a week off to reflect on your past and your future, it’s something I highly recommend. Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerburg, and Bill Gates have done it. You should too.
  • Historical and empirical data have linked artistic creativity to depression and other affective disorders. This study examined how vulnerability to experiencing negative affect, measured with biological products, and intense negative emotions influenced artistic creativity. The authors assessed participants' baseline levels of an adrenal steroid (dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate, or DHEAS), previously linked to depression, as a measure of affective vulnerability. They then manipulated emotional responses by randomly assigning participants to receive social rejection or social approval or to a nonsocial situation. Participants then completed artistic collages, which were later evaluated by artists. Results confirmed a person-by-situation interaction. Social rejection was associated with greater artistic creativity; however, the interaction between affective vulnerability (lower baseline DHEAS) and condition was significant.
  • Research on the relationship between mood, creativity and memory teach us two things. "The first is that our fleeting feelings can change the way we think. While sadness makes us more focused and diligent — the spotlight of attention is sharpened — happiness seems to have the opposite effect, so that good moods make us 20 percent more likely to have a moment of insight. The second takeaway is that many of our creative challenges involve tasks that require diligence, persistence and focus. It’s not easy making a collage or writing a poem or solving a hard technical problem, which is why sometimes being a little miserable can improve our creative performance."
  • Professor Akinola examines how organizational environments- characterized by deadlines, multi-tasking, and other attributes such as having low status- can engender stress, and how this stress can have spill-over effects on performance. She uses a multi-method approach that includes behavioral observation, implicit and reaction time measures, and physiological responses (specifically hormonal and cardiovascular responses) to examine how cognitive outcomes are affected by stress.