Something I’ve Been Practicing for Years: Having A Couple of Beers Might Help Your Problem Solving Skills

Why wasn’t I invited to this research panel? I only get invited to the ones where they give you needles and pills that make your hair fall out (except my back hair, which is now thicker). The University of Illinois has done a study that shows that a couple of beers increases your problem solving capacity (via Gizmodo). Professor Jennifer Wiley at the University led the study, and bottoms up to her. The study found that beer-lovers with a blood alcohol content of 0.07 had trouble with attention-heavy tests, but kicked ass at tricky problem solving styled questions. The beer-drinkers solved 40% more questions than their sober, square counterparts, and also did it 3.5 seconds faster. They also swore more and talked about 30 decibels higher (okay, not true).

“The bottom line is that we think being too focused can blind you to novel possibilities, and a broader, more flexible state of attention is needed for creative solutions to emerge,” said Wiley. Inspiration to tip back a beer at work at lunch if you ever needed one.

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