Everyone has different abilities when it comes to solving problems, thinking logically, and acquiring new knowledge.
Your brain needs exercise just like a muscle. If you use it often and in the right ways, you will become a more skilled thinker and increase your ability to focus.
Changing your daily routine actually enhance your intelligence. These are a few of the many habits that can benefit your brain.
1. Nothing beats a curious mind
“I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.” -Albert Einstein
How curious are you? Don’t take things on face value. Go deeper into how things work. Question most things. Be genuinely interested in new subjects.
Start the curious habit of questioning everyday things, products or services. Stretch your brains to get answers to questions you mostly ignore.
Never stop questioning. Curiosity has always been an important trait of a genius. A curious mind can relate and connect ideas better. Maintain an open mind and be willing to learn, unlearn and relearn.
2. Read outside your scope
Don’t just read fiction or non-fiction materials. Learn outside your industry. Read a history of human evolution, space travel or on a topic you will not mostly go for. Be curious about other industries. Choose books on different subjects. Read outside your comfort topics.
Read biographies of great inventors. Get out of your comfort zone once a while. You will not only improve and expand your knowledge, but you will also be a better conversationalist.
3. Stick to real-world brain exercises
Activities like testing your recall, figuring out problems without the help of technology, taking up a new hobby have proven to be good for the brain.
They stimulate and boost your brain. Stick to brain activities that involve real-world activities and are challenging.
When you are able to master a brain activity, move to another one. Don’t get comfortable. You are not looking for fun. The only way to cognitive improvement is to start doing activities you are worst at. Strive for challenges that will keep you thinking.
Physical exercise is great for your body. And mental exercise is equally important for your brain health. There are no shortage of brain training apps that offer daily exercises designed to boost your brain power.
Getting smarter is not an easy process. But in the end, you can improve you memory and problem solving skills.
4. Getting in shape builds your mind
Don’t just play brain training games on the couch, get physically active. If you want to improve your brain’s power, commit to a healthy exercise routine. Mental games are helpful, but they need to be done in combination with other activities to boost your brain muscles.
Physical activity establishes better blood flow to your brain. And it also triggers a surge of proteins that can help stimulate the growth of neural connections in the brain.
5. Choose to learn something new
Exercise your creative genius. Anything new to your brain can stimulate it. Different skills, ideas, cultures, and opinions can have a positive effect on your own views about the world.
Steve Job’s calligraphy course in college helped build the first Mac. In his famous 2005 Commencement speech for Stanford University, Jobs said: “If I had never dropped in on that single calligraphy course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts.”
You never know what will be useful ahead of time. Try new skills and they will connect with the rest of your skills in the future.
6. Subscribe to blogs that focus on thought-provoking posts
Never stop learning. Subscribe to interesting blogs that share insightful posts that stimulates the mind. There are interesting websites that provide answers to questions you weren’t even aware you were asking.
Focus on posts that cultivate and expand your curiosity. If you don’t want to subscribe to additional newsletters, Pocket is a super quick and simple way to save the best posts on your favourite sites for later reading.
7. Start reflecting on what you have learned by blogging
Apart from becoming a better writer, blogging can help you organize your thoughts. Blogging encourages deep thinking. When you begin to share what you know with others, your ability to communicate gets better. Blogging helps your brain to stay active. You will also be able to link ideas and pieces of information better.
Once you commit to the habit of reading about your industry and sharing what you know with your audience, you will begin to comprehend and process information faster.
Getting you brain active again requires some amount of effort. Start doing sufficient mental and physical exercises. Plan on getting better sleep. And start eating healthy again.
It’s a slow process, but once you commit to it, you can significantly improve your brain power. It’s definitely not easy but it’s worth your precious time. Change is hard. But it’s also beneficial for your mind.
Thomas Oppong is the founder at Alltopstartups (where he shares resources for startups and entrepreneurs) and the curator at Postanly (a free weekly newsletter that delivers the most insightful long-form posts from top publishers).