The eureka moment refers to a common human experience of suddenly understanding a previously incomprehensible problem or concept. Some research describes it as an Aha!
Some of the most amazing ideas in history came to their inventors while they were daydreaming.
The eureka moment, or the aha, is the culmination of a pre-conscious process known as incubation.
Incubation is a stage in which the thinker has temporarily set aside his or her attempts to solve a problem, and has turned to other thoughts. But behind the curtain of consciousness, the brain is still working.
Most of us have had the eureka experience – that flash of insight that suddenly explains something, or shows us how to solve a problem.
A very famous Eureka moment is that of Newton’s upon the fall of an apple from a tree. If it wasn’t for a plague that had closed the University of Cambridge in England, Isaac Newton wouldn’t have that moment in his family’s estate in Lincolnshire. His realization came when he was strolling around the farm and noticed that an apple fell down instead of remaining suspended in the air. This experience of Newton paved the way for the development of the theory of universal gravitation.
The next time you’re stuck on a problem or decision, try incubating it. Think about it for a while, and then turn your attention to something else entirely! A great idea will come to you when you least expect it!