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Linda Samuels, CPO-CD®

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In The Other Side of Organized, Linda Samuels, CPO-CD® will encourage you to get organized enough to reduce the stress of life’s details and make time to embrace your passions. Already, thousands of clients and readers have found help and inspiration in her advice, personal reflections on change and connection, and vision of what can be accomplished when you find that sweet spot between chaos and perfection.

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Easy Success Tips to Boost Your Creativity and Learning

As I head to Cleveland this week for the annual Institute for Challenging Disorganization (ICD) conference, thoughts about learning, creativity and success are on my mind. The conference is one of the learning highlights of my year. Colleagues from around the world gather to discover the latest education and research about chronic disorganization. This is a creative group that strives to find unique organizing strategies to better help our clients who struggle with chronic disorganization.

I’m looking forward to success on multiple levels- having a successful conference for our ICD community, bringing back ideas to help my clients enjoy greater success, and personally appreciating a successful experience.

Continuing along the line of success, here are a few tips I recently discovered that could enhance your creativity and learning. They are simple, yet effective.


Success Tip 1:  Boost Your Creativity

According to a study conducted by Stanford University, taking a walk can boost your creativity by 60%. While walking outside has additional benefits, especially for improving our sense of well being, walking indoors can be just as effective when it comes to boosting your creativity. The next time you’re stuck with solving a problem, get up and walk.


Success Tip 2: Boost Your Learning

There have been several studies about the power of doodling to enhance focus and learning. A University of Plymouth study found that doodlers retain and recall 29% more than nondoodlers, specifically if the content is being delivered in a boring way. Another study found that students who doodle during class learned more than students who don’t. Psychologists have referred to doodling as an “anchoring task,” that helps to improve focus.


Have you experimented with either of these strategies? What are your success tips for enhancing creativity and learning? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Come join the conversation.





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Reader Comments (13)

I am definitely a walker and I couldn't agree more. My best ideas come to me when I am letting my mind wander. When I'm walking, I'm encountering my world in a different way than when I am in my office or on the job. Just as in with a bottle of seltzer, my best ideas bubble up when I remove my "thinking" cap and breathe.

September 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSeana Turner

I definitely have inspiration when I am walking, but also when I am in the shower. I think it is the mundane acts that let our minds free to think clearer than when we are bombarding it with information.

September 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJill Robson

Wow Seana, I love the analogy of ideas bubbling up to the surface like a bottle of seltzer being uncapped.

September 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJill Robson

I am a 'doodler' of sorts, and always have been. Sadly often criticized for doing so because it 'looks' like I'm daydreaming instead of listening! However, I too find that the activity of doodling (and sometimes note-taking) indeed helps to 'anchor' my learning potential.

Thank you Linda for validating the activity of doodling, as I too will be attending the ICD Conference this week and now feel more justified to doodle if I feel the urge. Humm...perhaps I'll even bring some color pencils - the ICD Logo colors - of course!! (~.~)

September 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSheila Delson, CPO-CD

Both tips are great to enhance success. I agree with Jill, mundane activities are the best for me to let my mind fly and capture new ideas, walking, cooking, exercising, hand-washing the dishes and my favorite one taking showers (I love water). I didn't know about doodling but I think I'll try that one too.

Best wishes for the ICD convention I hope next year I'll join. I'm pretty sure this will be a huge success on every level.

September 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterNacho Eguiarte

Collaboration always boosts my success. When I am faltering on finishing, I find a collaborator who can come along side me to get the job done.

September 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterEllen Delap

I do both and love both! I have doodled since I was a kid! I hope you have an amazing conference Linda and ICD is on my agenda for 2016! Miss your smiley face!

September 15, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterAutumn Leopold

Wow! How great to "hear" all of your wonderful voices. And what's even more exciting is that I'll get to actually see some of you in person this week. Woohoo!!!!!

@Seana- Oooo. Such a great analogy you shared with the bottle of seltzer bubbling, breathing, thinking. Nice!

@Jill- The shower is an idea-generating place…so much so that I have a special waterproof pad of paper in there to help me out when inspiration strikes. Do you know about AquaNotes? They are awesome.

@Sheila- Doodle on! I hope you opt to bring those colored pencils to conference. I always travel with an assortment of pens and highlighters because you never know when there might be a need for a doodle. Can't wait to see you!

@Nacho- It's interesting how when we do activities that require less brain power, or less intensive thinking, it relaxes our mind enough to wander or spark ideas. I'm with you about the water. I love all types of water. As a kid I used to spend hours playing with the water in the sink. Thank you for your good wishes. I look forward to seeing you next year in Portland. Did you hear about the raffle tickets for Portland? Check out the ICD Facebook page for an opportunity to win a free conference registration for ICD 2016.

@Ellen- You bring up a great point, which is that success doesn't happen in a vacuum. It almost always comes with help or collaboration with others. Can't wait to see you in Cleveland!

@Autumn- I miss your smiling face too. Nice on the walking and doodling. Most appreciate your good wishes. I'm very excited to be heading to Cleveland for the ICD conference. Thrilled that it's on your list for 2016. See above my note to Nacho. You can enter to win a free conference registration. Winners will be selected this Saturday, September 19th…so check it out.

September 15, 2015 | Registered CommenterLinda Samuels

Doodling - check. And now coloring in a mandala (in a mandalas coloring book) is my newest "calm the brain/focus" fun. Too, when I tweet at conference, the tweeting gives my mind an activity, to listen and synthesize what I've heard in the past few minutes which is useful to remember.

September 16, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSue West

I have doodled since I was a kid! I hope you have an amazing conference Linda and ICD is on my agenda for 2016

September 18, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJual Pie Susu Enak Di Bali

Just back from the fabulous ICD conference! So happy to see your comments.

@Sue- It was wonderful being with you in Cleveland. I'm guessing you had some doodling opportunities…and know you were tweeting. I like how you approach tweeting as a way to synthesize, share and remember what you're learning.

@Jual- A life-long doodler! Thank you for your good wishes about the ICD conference. It was amazing and I look forward to welcoming you next year when it will be in Portland, Oregon.

September 21, 2015 | Registered CommenterLinda Samuels

Doodling works for me! I have to take notes during a class to keep my attention from wandering, even if I have no intention of ever looking back at those notes, and doodles often find their way in. :)

October 28, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJanet Barclay

@Janet- I'm with you on that one 100%. If I don't jot down notes, I find it hard to concentrate on what's being said, especially in a class or lecture (online or in person.) I also like using highlighters when I'm taking notes. The color bursts on the paper also help me to focus.

October 28, 2015 | Registered CommenterLinda Samuels

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