The Noisy Brain and Creativity


Everyone knows the feeling of being bombarded by unwanted noise: sitting at a bus stop on a busy street, walking through a wood-working shop when all the machines are running or suffering through a drum solo at a concert. But these noises will eventually come to an end when we physically remove ourselves from the source of noise. This is not the case for someone with a noisy brain. For certain people, confused chattering and never-ending streams of internal stimuli can be uncomfortable to the point of being considered a full-blown mental illness, like a schizophrenic hearing voices. Conflicting thoughts can no longer be sorted. Distraction is the result and concentration is almost impossible, so it is believed. The afflicted person finds he/she can no longer function in a ‘normal’ community.

But is the ‘afflicted person’ not functioning properly or are the demands of the so-called normal community amiss? Of course, a person must learn to function in society, work to earn his keep, provide food for himself, have a happy relationship with a partner and maybe even have children. But must this schema define the way it has to be for everyone? Relationships, marriage and children and, for that matter, office jobs, are overrated. They may not be right for everyone. The introvert may not even want to have meaningful relationships with other people. Is this a reason to bend a person’s mind into submission using medication?

Let’s look back to the dawn of the hyperactive condition. When did this really start? Sometime when certain pharmaceutical companies found they had a surplus of speed and no legal market? Hyperactivity was believed to be outgrown when the patient reached adulthood. Outgrow the condition and the consumers of legal drugs drop. So what do ‘they’ do? ‘They’ decide today that the condition is not outgrown; a physical hyperactivity grows into an adult, mental one. Hence the noisy brain.

Is it really impossible for the noisy brain to concentrate and be productive or is it rebelling against unnecessary demands, useless processes and just plain boring, dumb stuff? Sit a poet or a painter down in front their tax return and command them to fill it out. Watch them go into chocolate shock. Lock a musician in a physics lecture. See him chew his finger nails off. Put a bank manager in an artists’ gallery and have him while away four hours painting a picture when he knows the stock market is still open. His hair turns white.

The moral of this story? Be true to yourself. You know what you want to do. Nobody can do it for you. Nobody can take it away from you, either. Give yourself permission to be yourself.

3 comments:

  1. Yes!
    It is often difficult to find a level. And often difficult to think in a linear fashion as society, on the whole, demands. They like your lateral creative thinking but mistakenly believe that this is just a 'talent' you have that can be summoned at will, while the remainder of the time you can work normally processing crap. The trouble is that when you think laterally some of the crap just drops of the radar. Oh well.
    What is we're discussing here?

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  2. I think we were discussing the importance of chocolate and the inhumane German tax laws

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  3. When I read this I thought of the movie "A Beautiful Mind" with Russell Crowe. Based on a true story, his extreme intellect was exploited and also contributed to his demise.

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