(ORDO NEWS) — French scientists have concluded that in general, people began to devote more time to creative activities during the lockdown of the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, people who were less affected by stress and anxiety turned out to be more creative.
The COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown that followed has required people around the world to change their habits and adapt to a new way of life.
Scientists from the Paris Institute of the Brain (France) assessed how creativity changed during this period of time and what factors influenced it. The researchers concluded that in general, quarantine made people more creative, but only when they were not subject to severe stress.
Creativity is one of the cognitive functions of the brain that allows us to find original solutions in new situations. To assess the impact of quarantine measures on creativity, scientists conducted an online survey in March-April 2020.
The questionnaire consisted of two parts. The first part was devoted to how people saw the situation in which they found themselves. It included, in particular, the questions “Are you alone?”, “Do you have more free time?”.
In general, according to the answers to the questions of the first part of this questionnaire, the psychological state, mood, level of stress and motivation were assessed.
The second part consisted of questions related to creative activity during the lockdown: its area (for example, cooking, painting, sewing, gardening, decorating, music), frequency, success, value, and reasons
After analyzing more than 400 responses, the researchers concluded that isolation has led to psychological stress in most survey participants, but made them more creative. Moreover, the better people felt, the more creative they considered themselves.
The presence of difficulties was not associated with the manifestation of creativity. Many people have encountered difficulties in their daily activities and have been forced to be creative in order to overcome them. Others, on the contrary, could not remain creative under the yoke of many problems.
Most often, people in quarantine were engaged in cooking, dancing and gardening. About 40% of participants who were engaged in creative activities in the five years before the pandemic significantly increased the time they devoted to it.
The general increase in creativity during the lockdown may be due to the emergence of free time, increased motivation, the need to solve problems and adapt to a new situation.
Decrease in creativity observed in some subjects was mainly due to strong negative emotions, stress, anxiety, lack of material resources or opportunities.
The relationship between mood and creativity has been discussed by scientists for a very long time. There is evidence that a person needs to feel good in order to be creative, and on the other hand, being creative in itself improves mood.
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