Tag: thinking

Newsletter – Do you have a sock missing?

Dear Reader ,

Many of you subscribed to this newsletter after electing to receive a free copy of my Innovation Handbook. I recently discovered that the autoresponder on my website has not been working as it should so if you signed up at the tail end of 2017 you may not have been able to get their download. If this happened to you then please let me know.


I took a journey from Macclesfield to Stockport by train this week. When I boarded the train, the announcer said ‘this train is formed of 9 carriages’. When I left the train, the announcer said ‘this train is formed of 11 carriages’. How did we acquire 2 extra carriages without travelling faster than the speed of light? It just shows that in many cases we do not notice consistency, but lack of consistency is immediately obvious. How do you do in your business?


Would Accelereat be a good name for a new fast food business? Just a thought!


Where is the missing sockYou may very well be thinking about the slightly odd subject for this email. Well, it is linked to a new keynote that I am developing, although it is not quite there yet. The title may involve socks or washing machines but nothing is set in concrete. However, the sock/washing machine combo is a metaphor for what we tend to do in both our business and personal lives.

When we decide that something will not work, or that something is missing, we go looking for it. Most of us will look in exactly the same place as usual. For socks, we look hopefully inside the washing machine, or down the back of our sock drawer. At work, we often do more of what we normally, do or try a little of what our work colleagues (or competitors) do. Having done pretty much the same as usual we wonder why we have not got a different result!

As Albert Einstein is reported to have said ‘We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them’. Now he was a chap who knew a thing or two so why not take a leaf out of his book and try looking at your issues (business or otherwise) in a different way and see what happens?

Please do get in touch or provide feedback by replying to this newsletter, or using any of the contact methods listed on the website derekcheshire.com.

Happy reading,

Derek Cheshire

Can I help you to find the difference that makes the difference?

Derek is a Fellow of the RSA, a speaker, facilitator, award-winning radio presenter and Adjunct Professor at VIT University, Chennai. He has been working in the field of Business Creativity and Innovation since 2002.

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Creativity and ADHD – is there a link?

creativity adhdIs it possible that the impulsiveness and quick-thinking that accompanies ADHD may also enhance creativity?  Given that many people who are diagnosed with this condition, what role could medication have in the creative process?  Does stimulant medication hamper creativity, or boost it?

The ADHD brain may not be held back as much by constraints on thinking. In a study conducted in 2006 (Abraham et al.), adolescents with varying disorders (including ADHD) along with a control group, were individually assessed.  The ADHD group was found to have a higher rate of being able to overcome constraining examples, what we call “thinking outside the box”, but had difficulty creating an invention from imagery.

In another study (White and Shah, 2006), people with ADHD were found to score higher than those without ADHD in a measure of divergent thinking (i.e. coming up with creative solutions to a problem).  However, people with ADHD did not score as well as those without ADHD on a measure of convergent thinking (i.e. giving the “correct” answer to a test question).

A later study also discovered that people with ADHD scored higher in original thinking and creative achievement than those without ADHD.  It was also found that people with ADHD preferred generating ideas, while those without ADHD preferred clarifying problems and developing ideas.

Contrary to popular opinion, (stimulant) medication may not hamper creativity. In a double-blind placebo-controlled study, Farah et al. (2009) measured sixteen young adults on four measures of creativity.  Two of the measures required divergent thinking, while the other two required convergent thinking.  The study found that the medication did improve convergent thinking while no negative effects were found on convergent and divergent thought measures.

It is evident that more research is required, however it would appear that there is a direct correlation between ADHD and increased creativity. Given that ADHD is but one marker on a spectrum of so called ‘mental disorders’ it is obvious that much is still to be learnt.

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