Editors Note: This is our 50th article. Thanks to all who have been along for the ride with us so far. Heres to more!
Scientists have said for years that humans are only using 10% of their brain power. I’ve always had a fascination on how I could get the most out of my brain. Over the past few months I’ve tried various things to help improve my brain functions and help me become smarter. Granted I’m not a genius and probably never will be, but these are a few ways that I have attempted to improve my knowledge. Try them out for yourself.
Lumosity is an online gaming service that you can use to “improve your brain performance and live a better life.” I started using Lumosity about a week ago and I love it. Once you sign up, you personalize your daily brain workout schedule based on what you want to improve. You can focus on everything from memory to problem solving. You train your brain by playing simple games geared toward what you want to work on. It’s pretty simple and straightforward, but really does give your brain a pretty good workout. Lumosity also keeps track of your progress and shows you your strengths, while improving your weaknesses. Lumosity is free, but you can sign up for the paid version for more detailed analytics and tracking.
This is the age old tip for becoming smarter. When you were a young child, you read all the time. Once you got to your teens or became an adult you probably stopped though. Reading is beneficial for your brain for brain because it helps you process new information. It exercises your eyes and trains your brain to decrypt things better. Reading will exercise your left and right brain whether it’s fiction, non-fiction, instructional or a comic book. Reading will also help with your vocabulary and grammar.
Discuss & Debate
Discussing and debating with others in a healthy manner about a mutual topic can strengthen your ability to think faster and apply your knowledge to a verbal situation. Obviously it is good to know about what you’re debating so try to go into it with some decent knowledge. The good thing about debating is you gain another perspective on a topic that you might not have seen before. It is always important to keep it cool in a debate though. You can’t always win or lose a debate, so go into one with the goal of gaining more knowledge.
TED talks are a great way to gain insight on pretty much any topic from some of the brightest minds in the world. TED has thousands of videos available for free on their site. They can be thought provoking, mind blowing, inspirational and motivational. It’s all in what you’re in the mood for. Try watching one TED Talk a week to increase your knowledge.
Khan Academy is an incredible free online service that allows you to take courses on pretty much any subject you want. Math, science, economics and history are all there, with a vast amount of other courses. Similar to Lumosity, Khan Academy will keep track of what you’re learning and help you improve upon your weaknesses. This is a great service that offers an incredible amount of learning potential. Whether you just want to learn something new or use it to supplement your current schooling, Khan Academy is worth looking into.
Sleep is your best friend and worst enemy. Personally, I feel sleeping is such a drain on the short amount of time you have in your life, 1/3rd according to a lot of studies. Sure you can accomplish more things without sleep, but are you accomplishing them effectively? Sleep is great to allow your brain and body to recharge. Get plenty of sleep so you’re not constantly running on fumes every waking moment. Having a rested mind and body will help you accomplish your tasks more effectively and will allow you to focus better on problem solving.
That’s right, physical activity will help improve your brain functionality. I hate it as much as the next person, but it really does help. Physical activity will increase your heart rate and pump more oxygen to your brain, allowing for growth of brain cells. I run on occasion and when I do, everything in the world goes away for a bit and it gives me some much needed time to clear my head. It sucks, I know but once you’re in the habit you’ll love it. I just joined a gym today, so I’m hoping to work on my physical health to promote improvement of my mental health. Give it a try with me and see how it works.
You can improve upon your current skills and knowledge by sharing it with others. When someone asks you about something you’re knowledgeable on, see it as an opportunity to re-teach yourself about it. When you teach someone, you’ll have to go back to basics and help someone understand the topic at the most basic level. This will allow you to pick up on any flaws you have along the way and help you learn how to learn new things better in the future.
Don’t Stop Learning
Society will deem “continuing education” as going to college after high school, or going back to college for a masters degree. Continuing education is the constant pursuit of knowledge. Knowledge is power, cliche but true. Why stop learning when you graduate high school or college? Continue to learn, become smarter and spread knowledge. It will only improve your own life and those around you.