"I often get great ideas whilst in the shower or when driving alone." says
Warren Edwardes, ceo of London based financial product innovation and risk
management consulting firm, Delphi Risk Management and author of <Key
financial instruments: understanding and innovating in the world of
"But the problem in these places is how to write down the idea as I have a
poor memory. I solved the latter problem by phoning my answerphone and leaving
a message, of course using a hands free system. And I have little note pads
scattered around my home. It is capturing that fleeting idea that's the key
before it buterflies away."
"So what's the connection between showering and driving? If I say that they
are both mindless tasks that implies that I should be concentraing more on the
road whilst driving - and you would be right. But I find that I get my best
ideas as a delegate to a conference, sitting there in the second row listening
to a tedious speaker who is reading out a speech written by an assistant and
me trying to stifle a ginormous yawn and making out that my nods are in
agreement. Well my mind just goes walkabout but remembers to send messages to
my hand which gets to write down the ideas."
"So perhaps the secret to idea-time is to generate idle-time. These could be
situations where you are not reading a book or watching a film; maybe in the
bus or train looking out of the window; maybe jogging in the park or on an
exercise bike; certainly not in one of these oh so contrived brainstorming
sessions; and advisedly not driving a car!"
Sent: Monday, June 02, 2003 7:10 PM
Subject: comment for the boston globe?
Dear Mr. Edwardes -- Greetings -- I'm a science and health reporter at The
Boston Globe newspaper, and write a monthly column on neuroscience and
psychology news-you-can-use. I've decided to write my column this week on
why so many great ideas come to people while in the bathroom, often while
shaving or showering, and I noticed that you touch on a similar theme in
your speech...So I wondered if you might have a moment to share your
understanding on why this may be -- why inspiration so often seems to come
among porcelain...? (And also, what can we do if we want to have more such
bathroom moments without staying locked in the actual room?)
E-mail would be fine, or I can reached at the number below between 10 a.m.
and 6 p.m. EST...Thank you so much in advance and all my best -- Carey
The Boston Globe
PO Box 2378
Boston, MA 02107-2378