If You’re Stuck, Don’t Just Sit There. Go for a Walk

When you’re in the midst of a complex project, the instinct can be to plant yourself in front of a computer for hours, especially if you’ve got drive and a strong work ethic—just push through and get it done. But pushing through doesn’t always produce the best results. Sometimes it’s better to step away.

One Stanford study found that students who took a walk before sitting down to a task increased their creative problem solving by 60%. There’s a reason people like Steve Jobs and Albert Einstein swore by long walks: getting outside and moving keeps your cardiovascular system healthy and your bones strong but also stimulates creative thinking and problem solving.  

Your brain performs an estimated billion calculations for every step you take. It’s theorized that bipedal walking is so complex that our large brains developed right alongside our upright walking. Walking also forces us to use both sides of the brain, prodding logical and creative thinking at the same time.  

Whether you’re stuck and can’t move forward, or hyper-focused, don’t just sit there. Go for a walk.