The four regions most active when it comes to humour and creative thinking are the Right Hemisphere, the Frontal Lobe, the Temporal Lobe and the Limbic System for its production of Dopamine.
Here’s a breakdown of the functions of each region:
The Right Hemisphere of the brain is highly active in both creativity and humour. People who are more creative in looking for alternative uses (a key skill in innovation) have higher activation in the right hemisphere than the left hemisphere.
The Frontal Lobe is associated with creative storytelling, association (another critical ideation skill), original idea generation, and divergent thinking.
Dopamine is produced by the Limbic System and is important because it plays a large role in association generation and the drive (motivation) to be creative.
The Temporal Lobe has two sub-regions associated with humour and creative idea generation. One subregion, the Right Posterior Superior Temporal Sulcus (PSTS ), is associated with conceptual matching, verbal creativity (the basis of creative thought) whilst another subregion, the Anterior Superior Temporal Sulcus (ASTS), is highly active in the “Aha!” experience, which happens when we make a distant connection.
When we run our workshops and programs with clients, we have a number of powerful games to help people develop their cognitive flexibility, brain plasticity, and get their creative regions of the brain firing before solving problems.
If you’re interested in one of our workshops or programs that uses humour to increase the quantity and quality of your problem solving whilst developing brain flexibility, feel free to reach out to us.
Humour in the workplace is not just for fun. Use it by playing improv games before problem-solving sessions or brainstorming sessions. It makes commercial sense. It reduces stress, increases productivity, and helps to create an increase in superior solutions.