German philosopher, Friedrich Friedrich, once said that “Neurosis is an essential consequence of civilization or culture”. Turns out that is not necessarily a bad thing. New studies have shown that people who worry more tend to find more efficient solutions to their problems than average people.
Although they feel nervous all the time and often get lost in their paranoid thoughts about people who do not pose any sort of threat to them, the people who show neurotic personality traits tend to be more prone to creative thinking than normal people, recent studies have concluded.
Confirming to the researchers, the part of the brain that is responsible for self-generated thoughts is extremely active for neurotics which can bring both more positive and negative traits to the person.
Studies have shown that persons that suffer of neurosis are more inclined to stay away from activities that require sustained attention and they are represented by occupations that require creativity, such as arts and professions that involve research. These persons tend to experience depression, existential crises and other mental illness.
Many of our great thinkers have been neurotics – Isaac Newton, Vincent Van Gogh, Mark Twain, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Woody Allen are only a few of them. There is evidence that suggests their creativity occurs because of their neurotic nature.
Why do neurotics score higher in creativity tests? The answer behind it is that people who are more neurotic tend to over-think. But that comes with a severe disadvantage, they synthesize threats where there aren’t any. However, under the right circumstances, their overcharged imagination will likely yield creative solutions for various problems and situations, rather than just giving way to nervous breakdowns.
In recent studies on the human brain, researchers have found good evidence to support this theory. Adam Perkins, professor of King’s College London and member of the team that conducted the latest study on neurosis, said that, thanks to their spontaneous perception of threat, neurotics have the tendency to feel panic sooner than normal people, therefore their reactivity is higher.
How is their generator of worry thoughts linked to creativity? Well, to put it shortly, because neurotics always have a reason to be worried, they also tend to conjure a larger number of insightful thoughts than regular folk, thoughts that are crucial to problem-solving.
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