The principles of creative thinking

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Creativity is a mindset that encourages imaginative thinking, unencumbered by rules and regulations. A creative person is willing to break free from his comfort zone to be innovative and create new ideas and concepts.

The creative process at first seems serendipitous or by chance, but in fact, is an outcome of various processes that occur in a logical sequence.

• Have an intention to create something “intended information”. This can be illustrated by the first three avatars of Vishnu.
o Be like the fish, Vishnu’s first incarnation (Matsya avatar); a fish can swim against the tide, which indicates that one should acquire the quality of taking independent decisions and not just follow what others say. Do not believe in mass imitation or “bhed chaal” or herd mentality. Instead learn to be different from others.
o The second Tortoise (Kurma Avatar) advocates learning the quality of “when to say no” or “when to withdraw completely” from a situation.
o The third Varaha Avatar or the Boar depicts the quality of not accepting defeat, even at the cost of his life. The boar symbolizes persistence.
o Collectively, these three avatars teach us that once one has learned the qualities of taking independent decisions and when to withdraw, the next thing to learn is that the withdrawal should not be permanent. Instead wait for the right opportunity and stay committed till the goal is achieved.
o The next quality to be acquired is that of lion or the Narsingha Avatar, who showed that nothing is impossible on earth. This means while you are persistent in your efforts, you should also have the conviction that everything is possible on this earth.
• Decide to do it i.e. “information gathering”. Listen to all to collect information. The big ears of Ganesha denote the importance of listening ‘without bias’.
• Next comes ‘information reshuffling’. Be like the Swan. To acquire knowledge from all the information gathered, learn the power of discrimination or wisdom or vivek. Exercise good judgement to keep what is good.
• The ‘incubation period’ then follows. Do something to relax your mind. To be creative, the mind has to be relaxed. Remove all your distractions to be creative. Do mind-body relaxation exercises. Shift your state of mind from the sympathetic to the parasympathetic state. In the sympathetic state, heart rate and blood pressure increase and a person cannot take correct and decisive decision. The relaxed mind state of the body is the parasympathetic mode, which is healing and is evident by reduction in heart rate, blood pressure. Flow of thought increases in a relaxed mind.
• After that you have flow of ideas or “insight” into what your consciousness tells you may be the right path or direction for you leading to creative “inspiration”.
• Inspiration motivates action and then you start “implementing” and your creative ideas come to fruition.

According to Ayurveda, 2–6 pm in the evening and 2–6 am in the morning are the periods of Vata or creativity. Most poets and writers do their creative work during these times of the day, especially 2–6 am in the morning. Vata period is more creative and you are less likely to make mistakes. Four p.m. in the evening is considered the best time to make a deal, sign a document or to send a confession note.

Dr KK Aggarwal
National President IMA & HCFI

Recipient of Padma Shri, Dr BC Roy National Award,Vishwa Hindi Samman, National Science Communication Award & FICCI Health Care Personality of the Year Award
Vice President Confederation of Medical Associations of Asia and Oceania (CMAAO)
Past Honorary Secretary General IMA
Past Senior National Vice President IMA
President Heart Care Foundation of India
Gold Medallist Nagpur University
Limca Book of Record Holder in CPR 10
Honorary Professor of Bioethics SRM Medical College Hospital & Research Centre
Sr. Consultant Medicine & Cardiology, Dean Board of Medical Education, Moolchand
Editor in Chief IJCP Group of Publications & eMedinewS
Member Ethics Committee Medical Council of India (2013-14)
Chairman Ethics Committee Delhi Medical Council (2009-15)
Elected Member Delhi Medical Council (2004-2009)
Chairman IMSA Delhi Chapter (March 10- March 13)
Director IMA AKN Sinha Institute (08-09)
Finance Secretary IMA (07-08)
Chairman IMAAMS (06-07)
President Delhi Medical Association (05-06)

Can Blood Pressure Be Higher In One Arm?

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A small difference in blood pressure readings between arms is normal. However, a difference of more than 20 mm Hg for systolic pressure (top number) or more than 10 mm Hg for diastolic pressure (bottom number) can be a sign of an underlying narrowing of the main arteries to that arm.

A difference of 10 to 15 mm Hg for upper systolic pressure that shows up repeatedly is a risk marker for vascular disease and future heart attacks.

Always have your doctor check both your arms for blood pressure and which of the two is higher, use that arm for future blood pressure readings.

Relaxation Therapy

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  • Relaxation techniques share two components: the repetitive focus (on a word, sound, prayer, phrase, body sensation, or muscular activity) and adoption of a passive attitude (towards intrusive thoughts.)
  • They induce relaxation response characterized by decreased arousal and diminished sympathetic activity (decreased heart rate and lower blood pressure) and increased EEG slow wave activity.
  • Relaxation techniques may be subdivided into two methods, deep and brief, or by the specific strategy used to induce the relaxed state, including progressive muscle relaxation, autogenic training and breath training.
  • Adverse reactions are intrusive thoughts, fear of losing control, upsetting sensory experiences, muscle cramps, sexual arousal and psychotic symptoms
  • Adverse reactions are relaxation–induced anxiety or relaxation-induced panic.
  • Relaxation–induced anxiety is a gradual increase in behavioral, physiologic, and psychological anxiety, whereas relaxation–induced panic is severe anxiety of rapid onset.
  • Patients with a history of generalized anxiety disorder or panic disorder and those with a history of hyperventilation are more likely to experience these adverse effects.
  • Patients should also be introduced to deep breathing techniques that often accompany relaxation in a gradual manner and not more than couple of minutes at a time.
  • Relaxation techniques can relieve pain in cancer.

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