Posted by Annette on August 6, 2013
Working out a problem that isn't soluble by the usual methods?
Flip "the usual methods" the bird. You don't need 'em.
Use the wrong hand to brush your teeth. Find a different way to walk to the cafe where you always work. Change your phone clock to 24-hour time and your temperature alerts to Celsius (or vice-versa). Make your late-evening workout an early-morning one. The goal is to tell your brain that things are gonna be a little different 'round here, and that it had better shape up.
Are you a writer? Paint. Are you a painter? Whip up a batch of homemade play-doh and sculpt. Are you a dancer? Sketch. If you don't do any art at all, do some frackin' art. Force little-used parts of your brain to wake up, then throw 'em at the problem.
Go for an epic hike. (Bonus points for an overnight.) Run farther than you ever have before. Swim until you can't swim another stroke. Go really, really hard. Then rest -- that means no email-checkies -- until your body springs back. It won't take long. Pushing yourself deep into tired and then emerging organically, unrushedly from that state is the body's natural reset button -- which explains its near-magical effectiveness.