Do you need to be in a good mood so you can think more creatively?
“Generally, positive mood has been found to enhance creative problem solving and flexible yet careful thinking,” says Ruby Nadler, a graduate student at the University of Western Ontario. In a resent study, Nadler and her colleagues looked at a particular kind of learning that is improved by creative thinking.
The researchers manipulated mood with help from music clips and video clips; first, they tried several out to find out what made people happiest and saddest. The happiest music was a peppy Mozart piece, and the happiest video was of a laughing baby. (more on this test in a moment)
We believe that we should work to be happy, but could that be backwards?
Shawn Achor is the winner of over a dozen distinguished teaching awards at Harvard University, where he delivered lectures on positive psychology in the most popular class at Harvard. In this fast-moving and entertaining talk, psychologist Shawn Achor argues that actually happiness inspires productivity. You can watch here!
Based on his research and 12 years of experience at Harvard, he clearly and humorously describes to organizations how to increase happiness and meaning, raise success rates and profitability, and create positive transformations that ripple into more successful cultures.
Did the video change your mood?
(Now back to the test) The researchers from Nadler study manipulated mood with help from music clips and video clips; first, they tried several out to find out what made people happiest and saddest. The happiest music was a peppy Mozart piece, and the happiest video was of a laughing baby. The researchers then used these in the experiment, along with sad music and video (a piece of music from Schindler’s List and a news report about an earthquake) and a piece of music and a video that didn’t affect mood. After listening to the music and watching the video, people had to try to learn to recognize a pattern.
People who watch funny videos on the internet at work aren’t necessarily wasting time. They may be taking advantage of the latest psychological science—putting themselves in a good mood so they can think more creatively.