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A new way to jumpstart your brain

💡 Today’s tip: Pull yourself out of a mental rut by teaching yourself a new skill, even a small one.

It makes sense if you’re having trouble bringing great new ideas to work these days. But weirdly enough, the key isn’t to just keep at it, squinting at the blank screen and telling your brain, “Come on, think!” In fact, as Allison Hirschlag writes, the best way to refresh your mind might be to do something else altogether.

“Learning a new skill is like sending an army of smelling salts into your brain,” Hirschlag explains. “Suddenly your synapses wake up and start forming new connections that you didn’t have before.” She chose to learn how to wire and mount a light fixture, but any new skill will do: The key is that it’s something unlike what you’re doing in your everyday life. And whenever you apply your new knowledge, it’s a reminder that you’re capable of thinking differently.

✍️ We want to hear from you. Send us an email at and tell us what new thing you’ve learned how to do lately. We may feature some of our favorite answers on Forge’s Instagram.

📚 More from Forge on thinking more creatively:

What You Can Achieve From 15-Minute Bursts of Creativity

The Perfect Conditions for a Great Idea

10 Ways to Feel More Inspired in the Next 10 Minutes

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Former lead editor, Forge @ Medium