Here at 2elev8 Media, we encourage a little goofing around at work every once in a while. It makes everyone happy and it usually results in more innovative and productive thinking.

Here is why:

Being in a good mood makes people more creative and analytical, this is according to a new research from the University of California, San Francisco. The research team conducted a series of studies and all of them pointed out that happy people had a more holistic approach to solving problems.

The Test:

For the study, the research team nudged people into different moods by letting them watch different videos or listen to different music. This allowed the team to control the mood of their subjects. After setting their mood, they were given identical exams and essays. All the results pointed out that the happy subject was better at solving problems compared to subjects that were in a sad and neutral mood.

The science behind all of this:

So how come? The team also concluded that when someone is happy, the body releases more dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is linked with motivation, which in turn increases a person’s control over their mind. Happiness also boosts activity in areas of the brain that handle decision-making, learning, analytics and processing.

What to do when you are down:

  1. If you are in the “dump”, manipulate your mood by thinking of happy thoughts and memories.
  2. Visualize. Sit in a quiet place, relax and take deep breaths. After this, try to imagine a stress-free day where everything goes well. You will then feel more energized.
  3. Simply smile, Research has shown that if you’re sad, faking a grin can trick your brain into feeling happier.
  4. If you encounter a roadblock, pause for a while and watch funny and inspirational videos. The research also identified that a video of a laughing baby is the most effective good mood booster.
  5. Listen to happy music. The research identified that a peppy Mozart piece was the most effective happy music.

The next time your team stumbles upon a blank wall or before going to a brainstorming session for the next big idea, make sure that you try using these mood boosters to prep your team into being more analytical and creative.