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6 Ways to Train Your Brain to Literally Get Smarter

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Well-read people aren't just articulate--they also have a vast pool of knowledge and an always-evolving mind.

Reading improves your vocabulary, expands your communication skills and develops your analytical abilities. 

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6 Ways to Train Your Brain to Literally Get Smarter

6 Ways to Train Your Brain to Literally Get Smarter

https://www.inc.com/andrew-medal/6-ways-to-train-your-brain-to-literally-get-smarter.html

inc.com

6

Key Ideas

Enjoy intelligent company

Being in the company of intelligent people will indirectly make you want to continue developing your own intelligence.

Read

Well-read people aren't just articulate--they also have a vast pool of knowledge and an always-evolving mind.

Reading improves your vocabulary, expands your communication skills and develops your analytical abilities. 

Rest

A lack of sleep, relaxation, and excessive stress can diminish your brain's capacity. The brain requires plenty of energy to function, so if you're exhausted all the time, your mind simply won't have the ability to learn and improve.

Eat brain food

Food is fuel for the body, but it does matter what kind of fuel you are using.

High nutrition foods work well to power up your brain. Walnuts are a great source of brain food, so is fish; tuna, mackerel, salmon contain rich, fatty acids that have been proven to help neurons function. 

Play brain games

Your brain needs to face challenges, to push its limits to make progress. 

Try brain games like memory games, Sudoku, word puzzles, and problem-solving games. I love escape rooms that make you think on the fly, and under a timeline. They will increase your pattern recognition, logic, and ability to process thought quickly.

A journaling habit

Taking notes or only writing down things or ideas is creating an extension of your mind. 

Your thoughts will be recorded, and the routine of writing them down will enable you to think more thoroughly and improve your way of thinking.

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Empathy
Empathy

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Empathy in the business world

There are many studies that link empathy to business results. Empathy is correlated with increased sales, performance of the best managers of product development teams, and with enhanced performance in a diverse workforce.

It is predicted that those with a strong right-brain (interpersonal) qualities will have the upperhand in the Conceptual Age.

Reasons why empathy is important

Dr. Daniel Goleman gives three reasons why empathy is so important:

  • The increased use of teams (that could spark different emotions.)
  • The rapid pace of globalization (with cross-cultural communication that could lead to misunderstanding)
  • The growing need to retain talent.

Leaders with empathy do more than sympathize with people - they use their knowledge to improve their companies in skillful and subtle ways.

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Restrict yourself

Research suggests placing self-imposed limitations can boost creativity. 

It forces your brain to come up with creative solutions to finish a project around the parameters you’ve ...

Re-conceptualize the problem

Instead of thinking of a cut-and-dry end goal to certain situations, creative people sit back and examine the problem in different ways before beginning to work.

If you find yourself stagnating by focusing on generic problems, try to re-conceptualize the problem by focusing on a more meaningful angle.

For example: Instead of thinking “What would be something cool to paint?” rather ask, “What sort of painting evokes the feeling of loneliness that we all encounter after a break-up?”

Create psychological distance

Creating “psychological” distance may be useful for breaking through a creative block.

Try to imagine your creative task as being disconnected and distant from your current position/location - this may make the problem more accessible and can encourage higher level thinking.

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Meta-Learning

It's knowing how to learn. Learning itself is a skill, and knowing how to do it well is an incredibly valuable advantage.

Merely acquiring information is not learning....

Learning has 2 phases

Learning is a two-step process:

  • Read/listen: feeding ourselves new information.
  • Process and recall what you’ve just ‘learned’: connecting new materials to what we already knew.
Remembering the right things

You should not waste your time by committing unimportant details to memory. 

Your focus should be on understanding the bigger picture, on how things relate to each other.

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