Do humans really fail to use their brain’s maximum potential?
Movies like Limitless and Lucy try to show how humans don’t use 100% of their brain capacity, and these movies obsess on showing what happens when humans do reach its full potential. They make it seem like we become superhumans if do end up maximizing our brain power.
There’s no known drug that can turn you into a Super Human, but there are habits that can at least help you maximize your brain power.. You may not be able to fly or to last for days without sleeping, but there are some life hacks that can help you remember names or perform at work better.
1. Do not skip breakfast.
A good breakfast can improve one’s performance throughout the day. This is why it’s commonly advised to have a hearty breakfast instead of skipping it and making up for it during lunch or dinner. Make sure that you include eggs in your meal as it contains omega-3 fatty acids that help nerve cells fire at an optimal speed. Eggs also contain B vitamins that can prevent memory loss. Other food that must be in your meals include vegetables, fruits and lean proteins.
2. Practice mind mapping.
To fuel your intelligence and enhance your creativity, it’s necessary to make mental associations to remember things. Creating mental associations is one of the easiest way to remember, and one of the effective ways to do that is through mind mapping. Mind map is a method used to easily connect ideas and make connections. Through this method, you try to to create a visual representation of everything you know so it helps to enhance memory and understanding.
3. Chew gum for some mental booster.
There’s an idea that chewing gum increases the blood flow to the brain that it delivers not just oxygen but also nutrients. It’s also regarded as a good way to improve one’s focus. In a recent study, chewing gum is proven to boost one’s mental power for at least twenty minutes. Though it doesn’t last longer than one desires, it can help an individual when faced with a task that requires cognitive reasoning and memory skills.
4. Expose yourself to music.
Listening to music causes a dopamine release into our system that results in making you smarter and more mentally responsive. However, some types of music may actually be damaging especially when you’re trying to focus. So if you need to be attentive, it’s essential to note that there are the right kind of music that enhances productivity. Make a playlist of classical music and make sure that Mozart is included. There is such a thing called Mozart Effect wherein listening to Mozart’s music improves cognitive performance.
5. Work out regularly.
Being physically active can prevent cognitive decline, something that many of us are scared of when it comes to growing older. But working out regularly prevents the degeneration of our hippocampus, the part of the brain in charge of memory, inhibition and space. Working out also helps to sharpen memory and adapt to new things.
6. Do mental exercises.
It’s not just our body that needs exercise, our brain does, too. Working on puzzles and activities sharpens the brain and slows down the brain’s aging. It also helps the brain to function at top-notch quality. The brain needs to be challenged and it’s up to us to give it challenges, diverse and various, instead of the usual trivialities we face every day. Start off your day by doing activities like Sudoku, Rubix Cube, crossword puzzles and playing cards.
7. Learn how to meditate.
To accomplish more, you need ample focus, and meditation can help you achieve that. Meditating helps you organize thought, making mental associations a lot easier. There are also studies on Magnetic Reasoning Imaging that show how meditation thickens the areas related to cognitive processing, emotional well being, awareness and retention.
8. Teach what you’ve learned or your expertise to someone else.
A great way to test how much you understand something is by explaining it to someone else. It’s easy to say that you remember the important points, but reiterating them to another person can test how much you actually remember. Explaining concepts and discussing ideas are great ways for you to retain important information.
9. Jot it down.
In this age of mobile phones and tablets, writing notes on paper is slowly becoming obsolete. But it’s something that must be kept alive, because the mere act of writing down something forces one part of the brain to actively help in memorization. It also helps to keep a diary or a blog since it helps in being more coherent and eloquent in speech. Writing can help you organize and gather your thoughts and make logical connections.
10. Get enough sleep.
There’s no simpler life hack than this. Sleeping recharges you for another day and the lack of it can cause more disasters than one would like. Sleep is highly important if you want to boost memory and learning. It also helps in assessing and calming down your emotions for a more focused functionality. Just by adding 20 more minutes to your sleep every day, you already boost your chances of performing 2-3 times better at work or school.
We can’t all be super humans, but we can at least make sure that we end up maximing our brain power.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nicolette Morrison is a freelance writer and social media specialist. She’s currently finishing her master’s degree in Education.