Why You Get Your Best Ideas in the Shower

Your brain is buzzing, teeming with activity and fleeting thoughts. You have so much going on up there that you can’t possibly remember everything. Clarity and focus is elusive. You get frustrated, maybe even secretly wondering what’s wrong with you.

You have notes and lists, brainstorms and mind maps, but your thoughts still feel like a jumbled mess. And this problem you want to solve… and, well, the answer just isn’t coming to you.

Then it happens. When you get in the shower, like magic, a lightbulb goes off. The brain fog clears, and you get a brilliant idea.

Whoa, why didn’t I think of that before?” you ask yourself in disbelief. It seems so obvious.

Why you get your best ideas in the shower

Most of our awake hours are spent juggling tasks and distractions. When you’re in the shower, though, you’re removed from those distractions. There’s no pinging, dinging, flashing, random conversation, text messages, emails, computer screens, phone screens, apps, dogs barking, etc. to keep you from your quiet mind.

It’s just you and your wise self, and that wise self finally has a chance to speak up and be heard.

“Research shows you’re more likely to have a creative epiphany when you’re doing something monotonous, like fishing, exercising, or showering. Since these routines don’t require much thought, you flip to autopilot. This frees up your unconscious to work on something else. Your mind goes wandering, leaving your brain to quietly play a no-holds-barred game of free association.” – Source: MentalFloss

The truth is, when we’re trying to focus, we’re actually working against our brain. It’s only when we let go of that focus that the ideas and creative solutions start to flow. In the shower, you’re relaxed and (probably) alone. You can just zone out and that’s what your creativity loves.

Suddenly, everything makes sense.

How to remember all these random thoughts

So now you have that beautiful, perfect idea, but how are you going to remember it? You need to hold onto it because you know that if you don’t, as soon as you turn the water off it will disappear like suds down the drain.

You could try keeping a notebook next to the shower on the hamper, but it could be awkward and hard to keep dry. Some people use bath crayons—which are fun and colorful but difficult to clean off the shower wall (seriously, who needs yet another thing to clean?).

You could use the voice note feature on your phone (“Hey Siri!”), but that doesn’t always work well, either.

There’s a simple but brilliant solution to this problem. You need a little thing called AquaNotes.

AquaNotes are small pads of waterproof paper with suction cups on the back for mounting on your shower wall. They even come with a waterproof pencil, that you also attach to the wall of the shower with a suction cup.

Whoever invented these is a GENIUS. I use mine ALL THE TIME.

It never fails, almost every day I think of something that I want to remember while in the shower, so I just write it down. Sometimes it’s an idea, sometimes it’s something I need to get done. Either way, if it’s important, it gets recorded on the AquaNotes pad, and the perforated sheets easily tear off so I can take my idea with me.

Back to you. What’s your strategy?

Do you get your best ideas in the shower? If so, how do you remember your shower thoughts? Share in the comments.