Other creative people have deliberately employed techniques to activate the right brain for problem solving, writing ideas, and other creative solutions. Any sort of dissociation, disconnecting from the everyday world gets you there. For example, Edison is purported to have used the hypnogogic state to stimulate creativity. The hypnogogic state is that state just prior to falling asleep. He activated this state for creative problem solving by placing himself in his easy chair holding metal bearings in his hand, which was positioned over a metal bowl. Then as he relaxed into that state between sleeping and waking, called the hypnogogic state, if he fell asleep, his hand would release the metal balls, which would then wake him as they fell into the bowl. This is an example of the use of the dissociated state, which is a hallmark of the “right brain” and has been used by various means by many creative people. Most don’t understand that is what they are doing. There are many ways to activate this part of the mind. For most people repetitive activities, special music, or just day dreaming will do the job. It’s achieving a dissociative state that quiets the left brain and activates the right brain. I knew a General officer who, after getting briefed on a vexing question, would state, “that is one for jogging.” By that he meant that he would bring the question to mind while jogging. Jogging or running entails repetitive action and may also include some hypoxia known as the “runner’s high” and brings on this dissociative state.
This is actually what is going on when people say they “will sleep on it” before coming to a decision. As early as the ancient Greeks, dreams were elevated to forecast the future and provide specific guidance to the dreamer. A premium was placed on those who seemed to be able to accurately interpret the dream. When they needed healing, the ancient Greeks visited temples of Asklepios, the Greek god of healing, where priests advised them how to incubate a healing dream. Dream researchers and modern healers have resurrected and updated this ancient practice and detail a step-by-step process on how to incubate a dream. To incubate a dream means to have a dream that is focused on solving a specific problem or question. For the trans-personal therapist the dream is “the royal road to the unconscious” and the unconscious holds virtually all the clues to unraveling any problem in physical reality. There is an infinite wealth of information and guidance in the unconscious, which can be coaxed to conscious awareness for the personality’s benefit. The dream is a prime method to do this. Therefore, it is not unusual to hear of a famous writer, artist or scientist, anyone engaged in a creative process, who uses either the dream state or the transition into and out of sleep (the hypnogogic and hypnopompic states, respectively) to get specific answers, solve creative problems and get inspiration.
Benefits of The Right Brain by Richard Stammler (extracts)
Right Brain Benefits
When someone says that they are “right brained,” they are referring to the hemispheric dominance of their brain. Each side of the brain is responsible for different characteristics, and depending on the side of the brain that you use the most, you could exhibit natural characteristics. Understanding the benefits of using the right brain can give you a winning edge when it comes to personal relationships, your professional life and general success in your life. Use your strengths to get ahead and allow your right brain dominance to flourish.
When a person thinks with his right brain, verbal processing and reading comprehension come easily. This is because with a right hemispheric dominance, a person can readily convert words into pictures and ideas in his mind. When reading a book, a right-brained individual has no problem grasping the concepts and imagining the storyline, because it is open to interpretation. Subjects with hard and fast rules, like mathematics, can be a challenge, because right-brained person often need to see and read a concept visually before understanding it.
Right-brain types are typically more creative than the more logical left-brain types. Middle Tennessee State University notes that this could be the result of the way a person who uses the right brain thinks. Right-brains enjoy abstract ideas over concrete evidences, which make creation through art, music and writing easier.
A right-brained person is more likely to grasp concepts in philosophy and religion, explains the Australian Herald-Sun. A left-brained person prefers to see the facts, and discern her own conclusions from those facts. If a person uses her right brain, she grasps fluid concepts that may rely on faith rather than facts more easily. This can be beneficial in understanding philosophical concepts as they are not always backed by facts.
Because facts are not always important to those who think with their right brain, they may use intuition more readily for decision-making. Right-brained people are highly in tune with intuition, since they don’t feel that evidence is always the most important and effective way to make a choice. Rather than using rules and schedules, the right-brained person goes with feelings and emotions and chooses accordingly, according to Scholastic.com. If you think with your right brain, this makes you more in tune with your emotions, as well as the emotions of those around you.