Seems like a lofty proposition, right? First of all, we're assuming that there is a "genius inside" worth unlocking. Secondly, this "genius" must also be accessible at will. My research suggests that both assumptions are true: we all have our genius equivalent and we all can indeed unlock the creative "genius" that lies within us.
Over the past twelve years I've learned to tap into that place in my own brain. I've also found it rewarding enough to attempt to discover if this method works for others. After introducing over a thousand people to their "inner genius" over the past years, I'm convinced that this method does work.
So where exactly is the "inner genius"?
For starters, there is no "genius" named place to be found in scientific textbooks, although we've all read about individuals who've been labeled genius by others: Albert Einstein and Leonardo da Vinci, to name just two. What did these men possess that the rest of us don't have, or more accurately, perhaps don't know that we have?
There's some evidence to suggest that these "genius" brains may have been simply larger physically, for one thing. It was also reported that Leonardo da Vinci could write with one hand while simultaneously drawing with the other. Fascinated by this subject, I've extensively researched the lateralization of brain function for the past three years.
Of Two Minds?
Dr. Roger Sperry made a Nobel Prize-winning discovery in 1981, based on his research beginning in the 1950's at Cal Tech with split-brain patients. His work demonstrated the independence of consciousness between the left and right brain hemispheres. Dr. Frederic Schiffer's more recent research, reported in his book, Of Two Minds, details what happens in different hemispheres of the brain and what scientists have learned from split-brain patients.
A whole new world was opened to me through reading Dr. Lucia Capacchione's books, which put forward the premise that the right hemisphere of the brain can be activated by writing with the non-dominant hand. I discovered this place in my own right brain about 12 years ago. It is where scientists believe that creativity, intuition and problem solving, among other characteristics, reside. It is also the place I've learned to go to when stumped with a problem or looking for a creative solution to an issue. The proof that this process worked lay in the insights and quality ideas I obtained from my right brain.
Why do we have difficulty solving problems?
Human brains are evolutionary marvels in that they have kept our species alive for 40,000 years. There are, however, some limitations in our thought processes. For example, as patterns become more ingrained over time, we become more comfortable with them and find it increasingly difficult to break out of this comfort zone of thought. This is one reason why it is so difficult to "Think Differently."
We all at times also face barriers and obstacles that block our paths to getting what we want at work, at home, or even in serious life choices. These barriers often take the form of lies we tell ourselves. These lies are effective, too, as they insulate our brains from considering what otherwise might be a tough subject to face. A common problem for most of us is that of procrastination. "Why haven't I started this project, since it's due in a few days?" (I've faced this question many times in my 30-year career in the corporate world.) We're apt to tell ourselves the lie, "I'll do it later," making it easier to postpone. That way we don't have to confront the harsh reality as to why we've not begun the process.
How can our "inner genius" help?
When writing my first book, in instances where I realized I was postponing something important, I made myself pause to try to figure out why I had stopped writing. I then went directly to my right brain to look for answers. It may be a stretch to call the place a "genius place," but for me it was plenty good enough because I got the answers I needed to get "unstuck" and move on. Ever since I began practicing this right-brain unlocking process, I have obtained favorable results.
In demonstrating this revolutionary thought process to others, I've observed interview subjects break through their own barriers to figure out a new business, obtain insight on a difficult relationship, find a job, understand a habit of hoarding, learn why they find intimate relationships difficult, and more. All of these were issues the subjects had confronted for years without successful resolution.
The power of this methodology -- right-brain or intuitive writing -- lies within the participants themselves as they discover their own answers show up on the page, almost magically. They have tapped into a part of their consciousness that they were unable to reach before, arriving at answers that had eluded them in using other thought processes.
Is tapping into your right brain the equivalent of tapping into your "inner genius"? I've personally observed the magic and that's how I've chosen to describe it. Try it!
William A. Donius is author of Thought Revolution: How to Unlock Your Inner Genius, released on March 13, 2012 by Changing Lives Press.