Beer O’Clock

Beer O’Clock

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Crunch time? Grab a coffee to rev up. Tired? Drink water to perk up. Need a great idea? Get ready for the best thing you’ll read all week: Crack open a beer.

Chemical reactions

Coffee keeps you going because it inhibits a chemical, adenosine, which tells the brain to slow down when it’s low on energy. Alcohol improves creativity by reducing working memory and focus, and increasing relaxation and alpha waves needed for deeper creative insight.

Tell this to the boss

Researchers at the University of Chicago found that participants who drank two beers before solving creative problems solved 40% more than sober Joes. In another experiment, advertising creative directors were split into two groups — one sober, one drinking.

The drinking team not only produced the most ideas in three hours, but came up with four out of the top five best ideas.

Beer for the idea (only)

Responsibly consumed alcohol makes you more relaxed and reduces inhibition, freeing up the brain to think deeper and more creatively.

Here’s the catch, alcohol makes you more prone to mistakes, so is only helpful for creative tasks. You shouldn’t drink when you need to do detail-oriented or analytical tasks like finance, or when operating vehicles or machinery.

 

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NOTE: Alcohol isn’t a magic bullet for creativity either. You can encourage that eureka moment by switching off your focus and working memory by taking a shower, going on a long walk, taking a nap, getting a massage, doodling for 15 minutes, or having regular breaks.

Want to Achieve Your Goals? Just Keep Quiet!

Tracy Lee Nicol
Tracy-Lee Nicol is an experienced business writer and magazine editor. She was awarded a Masters degree with distinction from Rhodes university in 2010, and in the time since has honed her business acumen and writing skills profiling some of South Africa's most successful entrepreneurs, CEOs, franchisees and franchisors.Find her on Google+.