Boost Your Brain Power and Wake it up before or at Work
Your brain is capable of phenomenal things. You can take measures to boost brain power with these 25 simple steps.
The brain is a wonderfully complex, organic supercomputer that runs through variables at insane speeds, stores massive amounts of information, and keeps us alive without us really noticing. Trillions of connections exist between neurons as chemical and electrical impulses flash between them in a lightning storm dance of memory and perception. Our brains are a miracle, short and simple.If you want to boost that brain power, you must keep your brain active, learn new things, and use different senses. If you use more senses or rely on ones you don’t use as often, it triggers new growth and strengthens these new pathways. This makes learning easier, improves memory, and wakes your brain up to new experiences.
Change Your Alarm
This is a good way to stimulate your brain first thing in the morning. The brain must process unfamiliar sounds in a different way than the same old buzzing or your go-to alarm song on your cell phone. It makes your brain perk up and pay attention to the world if you throw something different at it.
Listen to Music
Music has a huge influence on the brain, from classical to rock. Different music stimulates huge sections of your brain at a time, creating new pathways, and even altering our emotions. Music has been tied to improved memory and focus too. Those tingles you feel roll up and down your spine when good music speaks to you are a sign that you just did something good for your mind.
Take a Cool Shower
The sensation of cool water on skin will wake you and your brain up big time. You don’t need to take a cold shower. Just a slight difference is enough to convince your brain that something new is taking place and it needs to pay attention. Play with the temperature of your baths and showers more often to keep your brain from dismissing experiences.
Close Your Eyes
Try closing your eyes during one of your normal daily activities. Shower with your eyes closed. Lock your front door without looking at your keys. Put your clothes on with your eyes shut tight. Limiting one sense makes the others work harder and teaches your brain to experience every bit of reality. This is a literal workout for your mind and improves memory, spatial awareness, creativity, and focus. Your brain forms maps of your world, not just visual maps, but maps of texture, smells, tastes, and more. If you use these maps, rather than relying on your sight, your brain learns to make clearer, stronger, and better maps.
Brush Your Teeth with the Other Hand
Using your non-dominant hand to perform tasks that you never give it stimulates neurons and nerves that don’t normally get used. You can also try writing a note with your other hand while at work. This improves memory, balance, and spatial perception. It will be harder than you thought at first, but it gets better the more often you try this trick.
Cardio sends oxygenated blood coursing through your veins and to your brain. It enhances your heart’s abilities and releases stress, but it’s also been shown to improve memory, productivity, speed, focus, and clarity for hours afterward. Exercise actually creates new brain cells and connections between neurons. Take a quick walk, jump rope, jump on a rebounder, or just do a few jumping jacks by your desk to boost your brain power all day.
Swap Lunches or Choose a Different Restaurant
Breaking routines, pretty much any kind of routine, creates new neural pathways and stimulates the brain. Take a different route to work. Trade brown bags with a coworker. Go get Italian when you normally get Chinese. Walk a note to a coworker rather than send an email. Break those routines, and your brain will thrive.
A little wine now and again may protect the brain from damage with potent antioxidants like resveratrol, but brain volume has been linked to how much alcohol you drink. Your brain volume goes down the more you chug, so take it easy.
Set the List Aside
Do your work tasks from memory or go shopping without a list. Relying on your memory makes it stronger. We use our cell phone apps to keep us on task too much. Memorize numbers and other information if you want to keep your brain from going all mushy on you.
Scour the Internet
Google and other search sites make it easy to learn things too. Take advantage of it and look up things you’ve always wanted to know, the more novel the better. It doesn’t always have to be work related. People who do several searches a day have more active brains than those who don’t.
Stop and Smell the Roses
Memory is tied closely to our sense of smell. Pay attention to the scents around you and apply them to memories you wish to hold on to. Roses aren’t the only things to smell either. Rosemary and basil both improve focus, memory, and even test taking. Grow a little plant on your desk or use essential oils to prime the pump and get your creativity and productivity flowing.
Have a No-Talking Meeting
Don’t speak, expressing ideas through drawings, actions, and facial expressions. Can’t convince your co-workers to play along? Try this as a family get together or meal instead. This teaches the brain to be more creative and to rely on every tool in its arsenal, instead of the usual.
Blueberries are a low-calorie sweet snack that increases cellular growth in the brain while protecting against damage to boost learning and memory. They should be one of your go-to snacks of choice. They’re great frozen.
Meditation reduces stress. Stress depletes the brain of neurotransmitters and hormones while limiting perception. Meditation improves memory, language skills, studying, test performance, and sensory processing. Deep breathing also helps oxygenate the blood and brain.
Pick up Puzzles
If work isn’t challenging your mind in the right ways, grab a puzzle, crossword, or brain teaser during a break or your lunch hour. There are plenty to be found on the internet, or you can pick up a booklet of them at a book store. They challenge the brain to think outside the box, build creativity, and develop memory skills.
Drawing stimulates the creative side of the brain, develops motor skills, and heightens spatial thinking. Painting or sculpting works too if you can squeeze them into your day. Remember to try using your non-dominant hand too. It may mean your drawings look like you are in preschool, but that’s fine. You’re improving your brain, not necessary making fine art.
Eat Healthy Fats
Avocados, coconut oil, nuts, seeds, olive oil, and micro algae all contain essential fatty acids that are a big part of keeping the brain healthy, young, and strong. Feed your brain the best fats and avoid the processed ones that slow your thinking down.
Laugh a Lot
Smiling and laughing release endorphins that calm the mind, reduce stress, and enhance focus. Get your daily dose. Watch a funny video. Tell a joke. Share a story that always makes you laugh. Your productivity will skyrocket, and your workplace will be more enjoyable, too.
Read Good Fiction
Reading fiction places you inside someone else’s head for a few hours to a few weeks, depending on how fast you read. You experience what they think and feel. Your mind also runs through what you read as though it were real, lighting up whole sections of the brain as though you were experiencing them in real life. You could be running through darkened forests, tasting the metallic tang of volcanic ash in the air, breathing deeply the scent of desert rain, or swimming through the silent void between worlds. That last sentence alone lit up the parts of your brain that process language, taste, smell, sight, and the movement of your arms and legs. Crazy, but true. This develops empathy, releases stress, improves memory, builds vocabulary, and speeds learning. Nonfiction can develop analytical thinking, but nothing beats fiction for boosting your brain.
Get a Dose of Sun
Sunlight affects mood and brain activity. Open the blinds right away in the morning and take a walk outside during one of your breaks. The vitamin D is important, but the sunlight itself helps your brain release the right amount of neurotransmitters at the right time.
Fresh air and natural settings improve mood and chase away depression, fatigue, and brain fog. Swing by a park or sit under a tree for a moment. The fresh oxygen will activate your brain and soothe away tension.
Writing improves critical thinking, language skills, memory, and the translation of thought into reality. Write a blog post, diary or journal entry, note, article, short story, or novel. It doesn’t have to be perfect to get your brain firing and boost your creativity. Just pick up a pen, pencil, or your laptop, and get writing.
Take a Quick Nap
Naps refresh the body and the mind. They kick in repairs to the brain and give a major boost to performance and mental clarity afterward. Take a 10–20 minute nap during your lunch break if you can. You will feel revived and mentally invigorated when you get back to work. If you can’t nap at work, squeeze ten minutes in just when you get home or on your days off.
This is a before or after work activity that gets your brain and body awake and ready to tackle other activities. Sex is exercise, so it offers many of the same benefits to circulation as some good jumping jacks, but it releases even more endorphins and beneficial hormones that can give a good kick to productivity and focus.
Random bursts of dancing are fun, make you laugh, and are a form of exercise. This ticks several boxes at once. Jump up from your desk and rock out for a moment. You will feel happier and more focused when you sit back down.Discover foods that can help boost brain power!