I just booked a flight to London and coincidentally came across an article that says that our brains can benefit greatly from exploring the world. A good way to start the day!
It turns out that the ability of the brain to handle new information is connected to well-being and that travel can get your bring working in new ways. It is also beneficial to step out of your comfort zone, which travelling general encourages. So you should book that trip you’ve been thinking about!
In recent years, psychologists and neuroscientists have begun examining more closely what many people have already learned anecdotally: that spending time abroad may have the potential to affect mental change. In general, creativity is related to neuroplasticity, or how the brain is wired. Neural pathways are influenced by environment and habit, meaning theyâ€™re also sensitive to change: New sounds, smells, language, tastes, sensations, and sights spark different synapses in the brain and may have the potential to revitalize the mind.
â€œForeign experiences increase both cognitive flexibility and depth and integrativeness of thought, the ability to make deep connections between disparate forms,â€ says Adam Galinsky, a professor at Columbia Business School and the author of numerous studies on the connection between creativity and international travel. Cognitive flexibility is the mindâ€™s ability to jump between different ideas, a key component of creativity. But itâ€™s not just about being abroad, Galinsky says: â€œThe key, critical process is multicultural engagement, immersion, and adaptation. Someone who lives abroad and doesnâ€™t engage with the local culture will likely get less of a creative boost than someone who travels abroad and really engages in the local environment.â€ In other words, going to Cancun for a week on spring break probably wonâ€™t make a person any more creative. But going to Cancun and living with local fishermen might.