About The Eureka Factor



Eureka! or “aha” moments are sudden realizations that expand our understanding of the world and ourselves, conferring both personal growth and practical advantage. Such creative “insights,” as psychological scientists call them, conveyed a genetics discovery to Nobel Laureate Barbara McClintock, the melody of a Beatles ballad to Paul McCartney, and an understanding of the cause of human suffering to the Buddha. But these moments of clarity are not confined to the famous. Anyone can have them. 


In The Eureka Factor, John Kounios and Mark Beeman explain how insights arise and what the scientific research says about stimulating more of them. They discuss how various conditions affect your likelihood of having an insight; when insight is helpful and when deliberate, methodical thought is better suited to a task; what the relationship is between insight and intuition; and how the brain’s right hemisphere contributes to creative thought.  


Written in a lively style, this book goes beyond scientific principles to offer productive techniques for realizing your creative potential—at home and at work. The authors provide compelling anecdotes to illustrate how eureka experiences can be a key factor in your life. Attend a dinner party with Christopher Columbus to learn why we need insights. Go to a baseball game with the director of a classic Disney Pixar movie to learn about one important type of aha moment. Observe the behind-the-scenes arrangements for an Elvis Presley concert to learn why the timing of insights makes them difficult but crucial.


Accessible and inspiring, The Eureka Factor is a fascinating look at the human brain and its seemingly infinite capacity to surprise us.