Our mind and intelligence are flexible and there are quite a few things to give them a daily boost. For smarter thinking your mind needs these 3 things:
- A trained thinking processes
- Ample amount of information
- Focus on an idea or problem
For instance, Thomas Edison was able to invent the light bulb because:
- He was a logical thinker
- He studied electrical engineering
- He was focused on problem-solving
Here are a few simple things to do on a daily basis to help your mind in thinking smarter.
1. Drink at least two glasses of water within thirty minutes of waking up
After waking up from sleep in the morning, your body has not had any water for 6 to 9 hours. Water is required for filtrating of waste products and balancing fluids. 2 big glasses of water compensate the fluid shortage you had because of sleeping. Studies show that drinking more water increases our brain’s ability to conduct mental tasks. Ensure that your brain is not already dehydrated at the start of the day.
2. Read while having breakfast
Reading books is good; however, breakfast is far more appropriate for something short. As a substitute for watching the news on TV that may have little to no impact on your life or your intelligence, you should rather read latest news, summaries or reviews of the bestselling book. You can find on Google or you can also get a subscription like getAbstract or Blinkist.
3. Play inspirational audiobooks or podcasts while travelling
Load your phone or iPod with intellectually stimulating audio to listen while travelling to work. Few good sources are:
- TED talks
- Podcast of famous authors
4. While working, drink Green Tea
While caffeine makes people anxious, green tea contains an amino acid l-theanine which causes an increase in alpha brain waves. This means that where coffee can fuel anxiety, green tea causes a relaxed focus. l-theanine helps in relaxation and increases cardiovascular health.
5. Power Naps
Napping refreshes your mind. It’s been shown that power naps increase learning speed. Most people feel more drowsy and sleepy between 12 to 4 PM. This is a perfect time for a power nap and will increase your productivity and attentiveness for the rest of the day.
6. Avoid sugar during the day
It’s best if you can quit sugar altogether, however, if you can’t for some reason, just be sure you don’t consume sugar when you need to focus. The highs and lows caused by sugar are not good for smart brain functioning.
7. Don’t waste your time on Social Media
Your brain adapts the information thrown at it. If the brain is bombarded with non-stimulating and rapidly toggling information then your focus gets destroyed. You can keep your brains functioning at a higher level by providing rich stimulus. If you simply cannot resist Social Media, at least limit your usage by setting a timer and don’t end up wasting your precious time in mindlessly scrolling.
8. Instead of watching TV or movies it’s better to play games
Watching TV is an inactive and passive activity while doing so your brain consumes information, although it doesn’t process or interact with it. It’s better to substitute this mode of entertainment with gaming. Studies show that even an easy game like Mario has an evident impact on brain agility. Always keep your brain engaged instead of letting it catnap inactively.
9. Instead of watching TV pick up a book
Reading a book instead of watching TV is a lively exercise for your brain. Watching videos is a passive use of information, however, on the other hand, reading a book entails your brain to dynamically construct mental imagery of what you read.
10. Programming can make you smarter
Programming is a good way to become skilled at thinking rationally and in a pattern. Certain websites like Codeacademy and platforms like Udemy make it easy to learn to code. Programming can be thought of as the next level of puzzles.
11. While cooking tune into TED talks
While cooking dinner tune into some revolutionary developments in Education, Technology and Designs at ted.com. It turns cooking time into an interesting and invigorating block of time. It’s almost similar to watching the news, though, in fact, you are watching the most inspiring individuals in the world talking about their work.
12. Exercises during the day
Our mind and body are strongly linked. The brain functions well when you are physically fit. It’s not important to hit the gym every day, even a 30-minute walk on a daily basis can do the trick for you. Also, make sure you don’t stick to your office seat for too long trying to do some physical activity every hour, even if it’s just getting up to stretch a little for 5 to 10 seconds.
13. Change your company
Habits are contagious. Those you spend most of your time with rub off on you with their habits and thinking patterns. You must expose yourself to those who are smarter than you with the aim of benefiting from them.
14. Debate with people who disagree with you
Get into a friendly debate with people who disagree with you on certain issues. Arguing with them can help you to
- Hone your argument
- Get convinced that you are mistaken
In both cases, you benefit. In the first case, you persuade the other person by outsmarting them, and in the second case, your logic and thinking are set right.
15. Take a walk in nature
Walking in nature helps you as:
- There is more oxygen produced by the plants.
- Our human mind relaxes around plants.
- Walking helps blood circulation.
Taking a walk at lunchtime can help you work smartly for the rest of the day.
16. Always carry a notepad
Great intellectuals like Leonardo Da Vinci’s always had a notepad with them. They used it to note down thoughts, ideas, sketches and questions they had to review later. This small and simple habit helps you train your inquisitiveness and logical thinking.
17. At the end of the day make a plan for tomorrow
By planning the day before you get a head start for the approaching day. This allows you to be more productive. We are all very busy all day, but are we really productive? A huge part of being smart understands smart work is better than hard work. Pick your battles wisely.