When you’re staring down a problem and can’t seem to move beyond it, purposefully zone out. If you let your mind wander, you might stumble upon a solution. Research suggests that mentally pulling away can boost your creativity.
You can also pull yourself away from the immediate task and focus on something else. That problem will be there when you’re ready to tackle it again.
Be warned that zoning out can be a problem if it becomes habitual. Our bodies might compel us to check out or disassociate if we’re sleep-deprived, stressed, overwhelmed, or experiencing information overload. If this happens, practice mindfulness, self-care, or deep breathing to stay grounded.