Working at messy desks promotes creative thinking

Washington, Aug 06 (ANI): Clean settings lead people to do good things, but working at a messy desk stimulates new ideas, new researchers have revealed.

The new studies, conducted by psychological scientist Kathleen Vohs and her fellow researchers at the University of Minnesota, have found that a person can get really valuable outcomes from being in a messy setting.

In the first of several experiments, participants were asked to fill out some questionnaires in an office. Some completed the task in a clean and orderly office, while others did so in an unkempt one.

Afterward, the participants were presented with the opportunity to donate to a charity, and they were allowed to take a snack of chocolate or an apple on their way out.

Vohs explained that being in a clean room seemed to encourage people to do what was expected of them and when compared with participants in the messy room, they donated more of their own money to charity and were more likely to choose the apple over the candy bar.

In another experiment, participants were asked to come up with new uses for ping pong balls.

It was found that overall, participants in the messy room generated the same number of ideas for new uses as their clean-room counterparts. But their ideas were rated as more interesting and creative when evaluated by impartial judges.

The researchers also found that when participants were given a choice between a new product and an established one, those in the messy room were more likely to prefer the novel one, whereas participants in a tidy room preferred the established product over the new one.

The study id published in the journal Psychological Science. (ANI)

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