October 25th, 2014| Topic: RaMbLeS | 2


Aqua Notes sells one of these: waterproof notepads.

The shower has long been held as the best place to spark ideas and creative inspiration. But it’s always been a challenge to remember shower ideas, and writing in water is a struggle. That is until now! AquaNotes® is a waterproof notepad that allows you to record your great ideas while you’re in the shower. It’s so durable you can even write underwater. They’re recyclable, environmentally friendly, and the notepad is printed with soy-based ink. Order this one-of-a-kind notepad today and never let another great idea go down the drain!”

US$7.99 for the pad and the accompanying pencil and suction-cup pencil holder.

What’s with showers and creative ideas?

Dr. Alice Flaherty, neurologist at Harvard, and a renowned researcher exploring creativity attributes this to dopamine: more dopamine released = more dopamine unleashed.

People vary in terms of their level of creative drive according to the activity of the dopamine pathways of the limbic system.”

Standard triggers that make us feel good, relaxed, and thus produce a spurt of dopamine release include—apparently—a warm shower, exercising, driving home, and so on. Thus, a better chance of being creative during those activities.

But that can’t be all. Dopamine is released in other situations, most of which don’t make us particularly creative.

Dr. Shelly Carson, psychologist, also at Harvard, points to the necessary connection between creativity and distraction:

In other words, a distraction may provide the break you need to disengage from a fixation on the ineffective solution.”

Your pleasant shower, after a long and hard day with a perplexing problem, becomes a useful distraction, almost an incubation period for your ideas. Add dopamine to the mix and—hey!—you might outdo Einstein!

Your mind wanders productively. As J. R. R. Tolkien wrote in The Lord of the Rings: “Not all who wander are lost!”

One journalist who writes on such matters explains:

Why is a relaxed state of mind so important for creative insights? When our minds are at ease, … we’re more likely to direct the spotlight of attention inward, toward that stream of remote associations emanating from the right hemisphere. In contrast, when we are diligently focused, our attention tends to be directed outward, toward the details of the problems we’re trying to solve. While this pattern of attention is necessary when solving problems analytically, it actually prevents us from detecting the connections that lead to insights. That’s why so many insights happen during warm showers. For many people, it’s the most relaxing part of the day. It’s not until we’re being massaged by warm water, unable to check our e-mail, that we’re finally able to hear the quiet voices in the backs of our heads telling us about the insight.”

Be distracted and dopamined!

All that’s well and good, but the Bible gives a more fundamental and foundational source of rest and relaxation. Not distraction. Not dopamine. But deity!

Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him.
Psalm 37:7

That’s where strength comes from—God.

For thus the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel, has said,
“In repentance and rest you will be saved,
In quietness and trust is your strength.”
Isaiah 30:15

Why not rest? He’s been merciful to us, blessing us.

Return to your rest, O my soul,
For the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.
Psalm 116:7

As Jesus himself declared:

“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me,
for I am gentle and humble in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls.”
Matthew 11:29

Way better than a warm shower is our God!


  1. Tina Mary Mathew October 30, 2014 at 6:18 am

    St Paul has given us the name of the only medication which can actually strengthen us. Quoting God’s words to St Paul: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). God’s power is truly made perfect in our weakness. God’s grace is all we really need.


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