I do my best thinking in the shower. It’s often the one time each day my attention isn’t being pulled by an assortment of devices: phone, computer, TV, tablet, Kindle. I can close my eyes and take deep breaths — uninterrupted. The splash and roar of the streaming water stimulates my brain cells in a completely different way than the harsh glow of a screen.
As the shower draws to a close, I’m muttering repeatedly to myself as I desperately try to remember the precious handful of thoughts I need to record after. I’ll jump out of the shower, grab my phone next to the sink, and type furiously in unintelligible shorthand. Every once in a while, if it’s a particularly inspiring session, I’ll skip the phone and run straight to the computer.
My showers weren’t always like this. They used to be solidly utilitarian. Just long enough to be clean but not enough for my skin to wrinkle. Then starting a couple years ago — coinciding with joining a startup — my brain started working overtime. I was constantly absorbing so much new information that my brain probably needed other ways to process it in addition to sleep. It chose the humble shower as that new way.
Unfortunately, I don’t get to shower more than once a day, and I’m painfully aware that I’m not exactly helping our water conservation efforts. But I need those long showers now more than ever.. how else would I have gotten the idea to write about them?