Why Is It That My (Best) Ideas Only Come at Night Time?

I have never considered myself one of those night owls,  I actually couldn’t even grasp the fact that some people can be so up and about at night time.

However, yesterday, or more specifically last night, when I was lying in bed and trying to fall asleep,  I had my A-Ha- moment! I realized that when I’m bothered with or obsessed over something, I can’t fall asleep.  When I was doing bench work – it was experiments, when I’m coding – it’s trying to get something to work the way I want to, when I’m depressed – it’s why my life sucks and when I’m doing something new – it’s how I can make it AWESOME! And that was the case last night, I just couldn’t go to bed, as I was filled with this new energy.

Sometimes, when I’m excited I have all this “power” that may channel itself in weird ways, yesterday it was sorting keep vs. shred through mountains of papers, sometimes it’s tunneled towards cleaning, yep…insane…I know…

Last night, my brain was flooded with TONS of ideas of things to write about, that I was wondering if I should get up and start writing. But I didn’t and thus had to count of my deteriorating memory to register them.

So how come a morning-person like me get so creative at night time? Is my brain like a baby in utero that starts moving only when the prego mom is trying to rest? and so I had to explore what affects this one-brain storming?

As a good trained medical scientist my first assumption was that it has to do with the circadian rhythm.  A quick Google search yielded only other people blogs with insights like “I’m most creative after I drink 3 cups of mate per one glass of wine” or that artists and writers are mainly most creative at night (yay! I’m with the cool people now) but are also 10-20 more likely to be bipolar (oh no! I try to quietly leave  the cool people group…).

Since neurobiology is totally not my field, I decided to take a step back and just ask: when are people most creative? Then, I found some not so crazy (literally) concepts (-:

One Harvard Business Review article claimed that within an individual there are three components for creativity. The first one, and the most obvious one, was their self-creativity skills – clearly some have it and some just don’t. Of course, it made me question myself – who said that I’m creative? But this can be another post subject. The second one was expertise or knowledge, which I find relevant in this article as it discussed how work places too often kill creativity from one hand, but irrelevant as you can be creative, because you use your expertise in one field to make something totally creative for another field, on the other hand.

The third was MOTIVATION! or  in particular intrinsic motivation , as the author says it has nothing to do with external rewards such as money.  Funny enough, they say that the intrinsic motivation is the one most affected by the work environment.  Why is this funny you might wonder…well…because my current work killed my intrinsic motivation, there is only a tiny bit of it left, flapping like a fish out of the water, trying to breath…but we are getting off-subject…

So, this inner motivation, stems from passion and this passion is my motivation. I get creative and can’t sleep when I have something that I care about and can’t wait to tackle. Last night, it was this new blog.

Did I find THE answer to my question? Nope. It was kind of obvious already…Is it challenging as a nerd not to find a clear scientifically-based answer? YES IT IS!

But I can always hypothesize that the fact I get most creative at night is because I work full time, have two young children (almost 5yrs and almost 2 yrs old, cutest kids ever!) and a dear hubby. So basically, my brain is just like this in utero  baby that  starts moving only when the mom lays down. ..

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