22 Ways to Overclock Your Brain

“I just found out that the brain is like a computer. If that’s true, then there really aren’t any stupid people. Just people running DOS.”

- Anonymous

The brain is a three-pound supercomputer. It is the command and control center running your life. It is involved in absolutely everything you do. Your brain determines how you think, how you feel, how you act, and how well you get along with other people. Your brain even determines the kind of person you are. It determines how thoughtful you are; how polite or how rude you are. It determines how well you think on your feet, and it is involved with how well you do at work and with your family. Your brain also influences your emotional well being and how well you do with the opposite sex.

Brain PowerYour brain is more complicated than any computer we can imagine. Did you know that you have one hundred billion nerve cells in your brain, and every nerve cell has many connections to other nerve cells? In fact, your brain has more connections in it than there are stars in the universe! Optimizing your brain’s function is essential to being the best you can be, whether at work, in leisure, or in your relationships.

It’s simple, your brain is at the center of everything you do, all you feel and think, and every nuance of how you relate to people. It’s both the supercomputer that runs your complex life and the tender organ that houses your soul. And while you may run, lift weights, or do yoga to keep your body in good condition, chances are you ignore your brain and trust it to do its job.

No matter what your age, mental exercise has a global, positive effect on the brain. So, here are 22 ways to boost your brain power:

1. Run up your brain cells.

Research suggests that people who get plenty of physical exercise can wind up with better brains. Scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif., found that adult mice who ran on an exercise wheel whenever they felt like it gained twice as many new cells in the hippocampus, an area of the brain involved in learning and memory, than mice who sat around all day discussing Lord of the Rings in Internet chat rooms. The researchers weren’t sure why the more active rodents’ brains reacted the way they did, but it’s possible that the voluntary nature of the exercise made it less stressful and therefore more beneficial. Which could mean that finding ways to enjoy exercise, rather than just forcing yourself to do it, may make you smarter – and happier, too.

So, play a sport, train for an event such as a marathon, triathlon or “fun run,” or work out with a buddy to help keep things interesting.

2. Exercise your mind.

It isn’t just physical exercise that gets those brain cells jumping. Just like those head-pumped cabbies and piano jockeys, you can build up various areas of your brain by putting them to work. Duke University neurobiology professor Lawrence C. Katz, Ph.D., co-author of Keep Your Brain Alive, says that finding simple ways to use aspects of your brain that may be lagging could help maintain both nerve cells and dendrites, branches on the cells that receive and process information. Just as a new weightlifting exercise builds up underused muscles, Katz says that novel ways of thinking and viewing the world can improve the functioning of inactive sections of the brain.

Experience new tastes and smells; try to do things with your nondominant hand; find new ways to drive to work; travel to new places; create art; read that Dostoyevsky novel; write a buddy comedy for Ted Kennedy and Rush Limbaugh – basically, do anything you can to force yourself out of your mental ruts.

3. Ask why.

Our brains are wired to be curious. As we grow up and “mature” many of us stifle or deny our natural curiosity. Let yourself be curious! Wonder to yourself about why things are happening. Ask someone in the know. The best way to exercise our curiosity is by asking “Why?” Make it a new habit to ask “why?” at least 10 times a day. Your brain will be happier and you will be amazed at how many opportunities and solutions will show up in your life and work.

4. Laugh.

Scientists tell us that laughter is good for our health; that it releases endorphins and other positively powerful chemicals into our system. We don’t really need scientists to tell us that it feels good to laugh. Laughing helps us reduce stress and break old patterns too. So laughter can be like a “quick-charge” for our brain’s batteries. Laugh more, and laugh harder.

5. Be a fish head.

Omega-3 oils, found in walnuts, flaxseed and especially fish, have long been touted as being healthy for the heart. But recent research suggests they’re a brain booster as well, and not just because they help the circulation system that pumps oxygen to your head. They also seem to improve the function of the membranes that surround brain cells, which may be why people who consume a lot of fish are less likely to suffer depression, dementia, even attention-deficit disorder. Scientists have noted that essential fatty acids are necessary for proper brain development in children, and they’re now being added to baby formulas. It’s possible that your own mental state, and even your intelligence, can be enhanced by consuming enough of these oils.

Eating at least three servings a week of fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel and tuna is a good start.

6. Remember.

Get out an old photo album or high school yearbook. Your brain is a memory machine, so give it a chance to work! Spend time with your memories. Let your mind reflect on them and your mind will repay you in positive emotions and new connections from the memories to help you with your current tasks and challenges.

7. Cut the fat.

Can “bad” fats make you dumb? When researchers at the University of Toronto put rats on a 40-percent-fat diet, the rats lost ground in several areas of mental function, including memory, spatial awareness and rule learning. The problems became worse with a diet high in saturated fats, the kind that’s abundant in meat and dairy products. While you may never be called upon to navigate a little maze in search of a cheddar cube, these results could hold true for you as well, for two reasons: Fat can reduce the flow of oxygen-rich blood to your brain, and it may also slow down the metabolism of glucose, the form of sugar the brain utilizes as food.

You can still get up to 30 percent of your daily calories in the form of fat, but most of it should come from the aforementioned fish, olive oil, nuts and seeds. Whatever you do, stay away from trans fats, the hardened oils that are abundant in crackers and snack foods.

8. Do a puzzle.

Some of us like jigsaw puzzles, some crossword puzzles, some logic puzzles – it really doesn’t matter kind you choose to do. Doing puzzles in your free time is a great way to activate your brain and keep it in good working condition. Do the puzzle for fun, but do it knowing you are exercising your brain.

9. The “Mozart Effect.”

A decade ago Frances Rauscher, a psychologist now at the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh, and her colleagues made waves with the discovery that listening to Mozart improved people’s mathematical and spatial reasoning. Even rats ran mazes faster and more accurately after hearing Mozart than after white noise or music by the minimalist composer Philip Glass. Last year, Rauscher reported that, for rats at least, a Mozart piano sonata seems to stimulate activity in three genes involved in nerve-cell signalling in the brain.

This sounds like the most harmonious way to tune up your mental faculties. But before you grab the CDs, hear this note of caution. Not everyone who has looked for the Mozart effect has found it. What’s more, even its proponents tend to think that music boosts brain power simply because it makes listeners feel better – relaxed and stimulated at the same time – and that a comparable stimulus might do just as well. In fact, one study found that listening to a story gave a similar performance boost.

10. Improve your skill at things you already do.

Some repetitive mental stimulation is ok as long as you look to expand your skills and knowledge base. Common activities such as gardening, sewing, playing bridge, reading, painting, and doing crossword puzzles have value, but push yourself to do different gardening techniques, more complex sewing patterns, play bridge against more talented players to increase your skill, read new authors on varied subjects, learn a new painting technique, and work harder crossword puzzles. Pushing your brain to new heights help to keep it healthy.

11. Be a thinker, not a drinker.

The idea that alcohol kills brain cells is an old one, but the reality is a bit more complicated. In fact, a study of 3,500 Japanese men found that those who drank moderately (in this case, about one drink per day) had better cognitive functioning when they got older than those who didn’t drink at all. Unfortunately, as soon as you get beyond that “moderate” amount, your memory, reaction time is all likely to decline. In the same study, men who had four or more drinks a day fared worst of all.

Just as bad is the now common practice of “binge drinking,” otherwise known as getting hammered on the weekend. Research on rats found that those who consumed large amounts of alcohol had fewer new cells in their brains’ hippocampus region immediately after the binge, and virtually none a month later. This suggests that the alcohol not only damaged the rats’ brains, but kept them from repairing themselves later on – in human terms, that means you shouldn’t expect to pass the Mensa entrance exam any time soon.

12. Play.

Take time to play. Make time to play. Play cards. Play video games. Play board games. Play Ring Around the Rosie. Play tug of war. It doesn’t matter what you play. Just play! It is good for your spirit and good for your brain. It gives your brain a chance to think strategically, and keeps it working.

13. Sleep on it.

Previewing key information and then sleeping on it increases retention 20 to 30 percent. You can leave that information next to the bed for easy access, if it is something that won’t keep you awake. If you are kept awake by your thoughts, writing everything down sometimes gets it “out of your mind,” allowing you to sleep (so keep a pen and paper nearby).

14. Concentration.

Concentration can increase brainpower. Obvious, perhaps, but the thieves of concentration are not always so obvious. Learn to notice when you are distracted. Often the cause is just below consciousness. If there is a phone call you need to make, for example, it might bother you all morning, sapping your ability to think clearly, even while you are unaware of what is bothering you.

Get in the habit of stopping to ask “What is on my mind right now”. Identify it and deal with it. In the example given, you could make the phone call, or put it on tomorrow’s list, so your mind is comfortable letting it go for now. This leaves you in a more relaxed state where you can think more clearly. Use this technique to increase your brainpower now.

15. Make love for your brain.

In a series of studies by Winnifred B. Cutler, PhD and colleagues at the University of Pennsylvania and later at Stanford University it was found that regular sexual contact had an important impact on physical and emotional well being of women. Sexual contact with a partner at least once a week led to more fertile, regular menstrual cycles, shorter menses, delayed menopause, increased estrogen levels, and delayed aging. Brain imaging studies at UCLA have shown that decreased estrogen levels are associated with overall decreased brain activity and poor memory. Enhancing estrogen levels for women through regular sexual activity enhances overall brain activity and improves memory.

In Dr. Cutler’s study the occurrence of orgasm was not as important as the fact that sex was with another person. Intimacy and emotional bonding may be the most influential factors in the positive aspects of sex. As a psychiatrist I have seen many people withhold sex as a way to show hurt, anger, or disappointment. Dr. Cutler’s research suggests that this is self-defeating behavior. The more you withhold the worse it may be for you. Appropriate sex is one of the keys to the brain’s fountain of youth.

16. Play with passion!

You can’t do great work without personal fulfillment. When people are growing through learning and creativity, they are much more fulfilled and give 127% more to their work. Delight yourself and you delight the world. Remember what you loved to do as a child and bring the essence of that activity into your work. This is a clue to your genius; to your natural gifts and talents. da Vinci, Edison, Einstein and Picasso all loved to play and they loved to explore.

17. Cycles of consciousness.

Your consciousness waxes and wanes throughout the day . For most it seems to go through 90 minute cycles, with 30 minutes of lower consciousness. Watch yourself to recognize this cycle. If you learn to recognize and track your mental state, you can concentrate on important mental tasks when your mind is most “awake”. For creative insight into a problem, do the opposite. Work on it when you are in a drowsy state, when your conscious mind has slowed down.

18. Learn something new.

This one might seem obvious. Yes, we capitalize on our brain’s great potential when we put it to work learning new things. You may have a specific topic for work or leisure that you want to learn more about. That’s great.

Go learn it. If you don’t have a subject in mind right now, try learning a new word each day. There is a strong correlation between working vocabulary and intelligence. When we have new words in our vocabulary, our minds can think in new ways with greater nuances between ideas. Put your mind to work learning. It is one of the best ways to re-energize your brain.

19. Write to be read.

I am a big proponent of writing in a journal to capture ideas and thoughts. There is certainly great value in writing for yourself. I continue to find that my brain is greatly stimulated by writing to be read. The greatest benefit of writing is what it does to expand your brain’s capacity. Find ways to write to be read – by writing things for your friends to read, by capturing the stories of your childhood, starting your own blog or whatever – just write to be read.

20. Try aroma therapy to activate your brain.

One day, as I was falling asleep, while listening to endless speeches at a conference, my brain suddenly perked up when I caught a whiff of lemon from someone’s cologne. I immediately felt alert and found it much easier to pay attention to the presenter. I discovered aroma therapy really is useful and I have used it ever since revitalize or to relax.

Energizers include peppermint, cypress and lemon. Relaxants: ylang ylang, geranium and rose. A few drops of essential oils in your bath or in a diffuser will do the trick. You can also put a drop or two in a cotton ball or hanky and inhale. One caveat for the workplace; make sure no-one is allergic to the oils before you use them.

21. Drugs to increase brainpower.

Coffee and other drinks containing caffeine help students consistently score higher on tests. Since caffeine restricts blood vessels in the brain, it isn’t clear what the longer-term effects may be when it comes to your brainpower. So instead of coffee breaks try gingko biloba and gotu kola herbal teas. Ginkgo biloba has been shown to increase blood flow to the brain, and improve concentration.

22. Build a brain trust.

Surround yourself with inspiring people from a wide variety of fields who encourage you and stimulate your creativity. Read magazines from a wide variety of fields. Make connections between people, places and things, to discover new opportunities, and to find solutions to your problems.

Remember that no matter what your age or your occupation; your brain needs to be constantly challenged to be at its peak in terms of performance. Whether it’s doing logic puzzles, memorizing lines from Shakespeare, or learning a new skill, keep your brain busy, if you don’t want it to rust away like a car in a junkyard.

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137 Comments

  • Brien T. says:

    I like it !

    Try Hydergine 4MG three times a day too !

  • Ririan says:

    Read more about Hydergine here. Also be sure to seek a health professional’s advice before trying Hydergine.

  • John Bresnik says:

    what does “overclok” mean?

  • Ririan says:

    I guess I’ve spelled “overclocking” wrong in my headline, sorry guys :)

  • musicbyLen says:

    Hello Ririan,

    Great, informative site. I’ve just bookmarked it and will mention to some friends as well.

    As for John’s question, if not already understood. The idea of “overclocking” your brain is simply the attempt to get the most out of it by any variety of means, including many you’ve mentioned.

    take care!
    Len

    p.s. What is the pros and cons of Hydergine as mentioned before.

    p.p.s. I am a member at Dahn Yoga and one thing that makes them a little different is their approach to finding your center, calming, meditation, etc. Some of it is not for me, but have to admit that much of it is quite effective, even for those whose minds are not completely open to such things.

  • Ririan says:

    Thank you Len :)

    If you look for the pros and cons of Hydergine, you’ll find them here.

  • Isaac says:

    Thank you for putting this up! I bookmarked this page so I can come here and take advice to make my brain more useful to me.

  • Peter Poortinga says:

    If I understand it well:
    More sex, more games, some drugs, lots of sleep, eat fish and no fat, Laugh a lotm less alcohol and finaly ask yourself ‘why’ you want this all, makes you brilliant? … I will start directly.
    Regards Peter

  • Nigi says:

    A major misconception is that brain is not a computer. Neural networks work in a completely different way than computers. While computers deal very well with strictly logical/mathematical problems, neural networks are far more effective at dealing with more abstract problems. Not really much in common between the two.

    Besides stating that brain affects every aspect of our personality is just a conception, not a fact. Brain is probably the least known thing in the universe. Saying what all it does or how it does it is mostly just guessing.

  • Ravi says:

    Go Ginkgo Biloba!

  • sindhu says:

    it’s pretty cool to do all this. i agree, but the asking WHY part? wouldnt that make me sound like a n00b ? :-

  • mmartinphd says:

    Don’t go Ginkgo Biloba! It does increase blood to your brain, but your brain already gets plenty of blood. Research shows it does nothing for memory or cognition and it might increase chance of stroke.

  • Yup. Use it or lose it! Brains need to be worked!

  • frozenzombie says:

    Good suggestion..
    Thank for sharing …

  • Jacek says:

    Great article. Thanks

  • Very interesting site, I just came across it today from a friend. I love the tips. Thanks! Keep it up.

  • Markus says:

    >Scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif., found that adult mice who ran on an exercise wheel whenever they felt like it gained twice as many new cells in the hippocampus, an area of the brain involved in learning and memory, than mice who sat around all day discussing Lord of the Rings in Internet chat rooms.

    Hahaha, excellent, dude! :) That’s what I call funny, hehe. And I’d say that laughing is probably good for your brain as well.

  • The Geek says:

    This is great, thanks!

  • neon says:

    Great article. I have found from my many years experience that proper diet and active lifestyle is making my brain working fully through the whole day. To be concrete, I am having perfect experiences with macrobiotic diet – whole grains, vegetables, legumes and fishes.

  • Nik says:

    Excellent list! I already do a lot of the things on this list as often as possible! :)

  • Frida says:

    Most of the advice in this article sounds good, and a lot of it is stuff I do myself, having read similar advice in other articles. I have an issue with one of the items, though. Item #15 ends with the sentence “Appropriate sex is one of the keys to the brain’s fountain of youth.”

    So partner sex is “appropriate sex.” That’s what I’m gathering here, since the author makes it clear that partner sex has been shown to have benefits while solo sex apparently does not. Partner sex = good for your brain; “appropriate” sex = good for your brain; therefore partner sex = appropriate sex.

    I don’t question the study’s findings; I’m sure it’s just as valid as any other study. However, the author’s characterisation of partner sex as “appropriate” directly implies that masturbation is inappropriate. Since the article relies so much on the findings of medical professionals, I would suggest the author research Drs. Alfred Kinsey, Ruth Westheimer and Joycelyn Elders.

    A smaller bone of contention: many of the benefits listed are only applicable to women with all their parts; if you’ve had your ovaries removed, you can schtup the entire NFL and it won’t have any of the hormone-related effects. Also, elevated estrogen levels are not always a good thing, as breast cancer research has discovered.

    Personally, I’m willing to sacrifice an IQ point or two for the sake of not having to worry about AIDS. I’ll do an extra jigsaw puzzle to make up for it. :)

  • PCNews says:

    Nice. Soon I’ll post on my website a link to this post ;)

  • Anmol says:

    Think as a third person.
    And analyse yourself like you and everyone else is a mouse.

  • Ashish Mohta says:

    Thx a lot.I would follow them and improve

  • Amazing Post with incredible tips on brain fitness! You are right, we dont only need to exercise our physique, but our brain as well, its essenstial to have a good mental balance. Good mental health reflects good physical health!

    Ed

  • Ririan says:

    Thank you guys for your comments, and good luck with your overclocking :)

  • Arthur Dent says:

    G’day Ririan,
    About 10 years ago I had a serious sporting accident, that asides from badly injuring my knee, groin, arm & back, I suffered a traumatic brain injury.

    For the first 2 years or so I was pretty much in physical agony anytime I tried to do the living thing… you know, sleep, get up, shuffle around… the day to day things.

    Initially, I was unaware I had a brain injury, and it wasn’t till I started to slightly improve that I realized that something wasn’t quite right. Once I realize this I instinctively started with the A’s, B’s & C’s & gingko biloba and I must say that I feel there was some improvement… however, to date my brain problems seem to center around my inability to stay on topic (in conversations), track time, the fact that I seemed to have little or no short term memory and a problem with what I call my conceptual continuity.

    OK, after reading your blog I thought I might give you another tit bit which I have learnt… the Roll Playing Game ‘Dungeons & Dragons’ does almost all of what you are suggesting. Since taking it up I’ve come to realize that it may have therapeutic values, not only; like in my own case where I’m the only brain injured person in the group, but it may be effective in group therapy applications and I believe it would be of great value for managers looking to the improve thinking & team skills of their staff, hence increasing productivity.

    Regards

    Arthur

  • Janti says:

    I must say this blog or post of yours was most impressiv! I liked it ALOT :D
    I have to bookmark this one. Impressiv!

    from a dude in Norway!

  • Allen.H says:

    Some great tips you got there, i’ll have to go through them again for extensive reading!

    Allen.H

  • Marek says:

    I would consider reading your article the “23rd way”. Very stimulating!

    I am quoting it in my blog devoted to fitness paddling. After all, physical exercise is on the top of your list.

    Marek

  • First time visitor to your site and I can assure you that I will be returning !
    Nice writing :)

  • nnu51c says:

    Great article! Will start imediatelly!!!

  • GreenLantern says:

    Thank you for the fantastic article.

    Some of those things I have heard about but was unsure of their validity.

  • natas says:

    Any chance of posting the references for each item?

  • dawnerd says:

    Thanks for those tips. I few of them I found out on my own and they do work. Art is an amazing way to stimulate your brain. I will literally spend hours at deviantart.com just browsing the many pieces of art.

  • Dewilde says:

    Great read! Iv’e allways been trying to improve the person i am. Most of the time i know how to act or react but my body just simply isn’t there yet and will react in its own way. These are allways emotional reactions to sertain situations. I often find myself wondering afterwards, why did i react that way. I find that body and mind are 2 totaly different things and dont often work together as well as u can hope. Teaching your body how to react to sertain situations takes alot of time.

    years ago when i was 6 or something i use to stutter realy bad. I was afraid of picking up the phone and being in conversation. After a couple of years of living in fear of speaking id began thinking. Why? Why do i stutter, i dont need to, so why. After that i started telling myself, u can just stop, stop doing it, its pointless so dont. I dont know for howlong id kept telling myself that, at least 2 years im sure. But i can say now, it helped! Im free of it.

    And i’m thinking if i can cure that. What other afflictions can i rid myself off. Just by telling myself, don’t, stop, etc.

    This article will surely help me improve myself. Thanks!

  • Emil says:

    I love you man!! First time that I’ve found a blog very interesting.

  • Gary Tay says:

    Added a link to your blog from Mensa Singapore, great article. Keep it up!

  • Uday Rajesh says:

    good tips .
    its required for all the people out here.
    going to link this blog (post) in my blogs.
    keep ur good work.
    bye..

  • Rommel says:

    I foung this web site very interesting. I am sure who ever come across to this site, they will find is worth visiting. I am fann of discovering new things, ideas and all that makes my brain work. Let us help to build new world of ideas.

  • Aaron says:

    Another thing you can take to help improve brain function is taurine. For a while it was a secret of body builders used primarily to increase muscle productivity. But research is being done to show that it helps mental continuity and memory retention. Some studies are showing that it also may help combat Alzheimer’s disease.

  • neo says:

    I pretty much stopped reading after you (or somebody else) said “there are more neural connections in your brain than stars in the sky” (aprox. citation).
    Are you sure about this?

    also, these 22 ways is pretty old news, valuable nonetheless.

    mai sunt caini in cismigiu?

  • qwe says:

    #12 is absolutely wrong !

    Strokes are caused by the lack of blood coming into the brain and not by too much blood. Some claim that Ginkgo has no effect, however there are certainly no side effects. Therefore, it doesn’t hurt to try.

  • Mary says:

    I’d also include these activities:

    meditate: recharge yourself and calm your inner self doubts.

    get a pet: they inspire, humble, teach and need us too (just go to your local shelter)

    volunteer: helping others is another way of getting out of our skin and into a better space altogether

    share: you did and I’m so glad

    say thank you: thank you! and thanks to http://problogger.net

  • Elise Wright says:

    This is my first visit to your site and let me just say that I am thoroughly impressed.

    My absolute favorite tip is number 19: Write to be Read. I could not agree more, and I am thankful you pointed out the necessity of stretching your brain by writing for others to read.

    I too am an advocate of journal writing, brainstorming, and jotting down notes to spark ideas already living within the writer. However, I have a difficult time reading blog posts that were clearly written for the sole purpose of therapeutic expression.

    I am not cold hearted. I keep a journal of my own, but I do not offer the content for the world to read. I have serious doubt that my readers would ever tune in to read about my evening jog or a mid-afternoon thought relevant only to me!

    Keep the content beneficial to your readers. They will appreciate it, and you become a better writer.

    I look forward to your future posts.

  • Ashish Mohta says:

    Wow .I like the analysis.Really deep study

  • Pushpendra says:

    Thank you pal, I was Looking for these tips because i work in on of those BPO’s in india. So i do not get sleep properly since we work during nights. I shall try some of your tricks which you have post on your blog, Even this post is quite good.

    Keep It Up,
    Cheers

  • alex says:

    I loved that part of sex..hehehehe

  • Nicholas says:

    Fantastic article, I think I may have found what I have been looking for. That little push to get focused :]

  • Armin Besirovic says:

    Replying another thank you would be lame.
    Commenting on this would be lame.
    Criticising it would be lame.

    Good post – left me without words.

  • Ririan, great post. “Brain exercise” and Brain Fitness Programs is precisely what we do. In summary, we advocate the need for novelty, variety and stretching practice in order to improve cognitive and emotional fitness and help prevent potential brain problems.

    Most of your points do make much sense, but let me mention a couple of them that would be rebuked by most neuroscientists today: the one on gingko biloba and gotu kola, and the one on Mozart effect. None of this has been shown to have solid results (apart from the placebo effect).

    Looking forward to your next post. I am not sure for how long you have been involved in this, but I would venture that your series on stress and mental acuity is a superb example of personal development in action. Congratulations-good for your brain :-)

    Buenas noches

  • John Angliss says:

    Unfortunately the Omega 3, whilst it might be good for brain development at the start of life, appears to be another drug-company myth for people with small brains! :-(

    The trials have had their critics, at the very least:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,,1889728,00.html

  • Ahmet says:

    wooohooo! :) thats really nice! ;) but, i guess, common known things :Pp hehe, no problem for repliying )

  • Oskar L-B says:

    Just by reading this article, I could tick several points off the list immediately :) Great stuff. Implement it in your GTD routines and you’re good to go do the stuff you really want.

  • Pepe says:

    I think this is what life just should ought to be. If everyone do this, certanly we all should had a better life, in general. Let´s live!!

  • Goran B says:

    “In fact, your brain has more connections in it than there are stars in the universe!”

    Useful article. I don’t mean to take it apart but the above claim bothered me. This is incorrect and you should remove it from your post. Why? Readers trip on this claim and are discouraged to take rest of information in credible manner.

    Milky Way Galaxy: up to 400 billion stars
    Universe: billions of galaxies
    Also there could be billions of universes containing billions of galaxies.

  • Ray Dotson says:

    I finally got around to reading this whole thing after starting several times and being interrupted. Boy, do I need these tips! Thanks for putting it all together here.

  • Brent says:

    Frida (#21) would do well to exercise her brain, which apparently lacks an understanding of basic logical reasoning. She says:

    “So partner sex is “appropriate sex.” That’s what I’m gathering here, since the author makes it clear that partner sex has been shown to have benefits while solo sex apparently does not. Partner sex = good for your brain; “appropriate” sex = good for your brain; therefore partner sex = appropriate sex.”

    Wow. I hope she was saying that tongue-in-cheek, because that logic was more “foot-in-mouth.” I’ll write out an explanation for us all, in the interest of exercising our brains. It’s not hard: she is stating that (A->X)^(B->X)->(A->B), which is a total fallacy in this case. Why? Well, an example–using her logic–would be: “Sleep = good for your brain; exercise = good for your brain; therefore sleep = exercise.” Which, of course, is rediculous. You can only equate things of the same nature. In the example, you can’t equate a behavior with a physiological change. Don’t miss the subtlety: yes, a behavior can cause or influence that change–but that’s wholly different than claiming the behavior -IS- the change.

    I wish everyone understood that if you base your sociological (or political, theological, psychological, etc.) claim on faulty logic, you lose most of your credibility–even if your claim is nevertheless correct.

  • Crys says:

    Excellent tips, and something I’ve been looking for, for a while. My memory has been horrible lately, I think due to tons of unfinished projects. I think having a clarity in your home will help promote a clarity in thought too (though I don’t know if that’s actually exercising your brain).

    There was actually another article that had brain techniques in it too a few weeks back. if I find it, I’ll link it here.

    Again, great article :)

  • James Hoffman says:

    I love it. Great ideas and I want to share it with every one I know. To this end, I teach English in Thailand and would like to share this with my students. Can I have your permission to reprint it and us it as a class room handout.

  • Max says:

    My father has 2 masters degrees and and he exercised his mind QUITE a bit, and he still came down with Alzheimer’s. I don’t think webpage is real usefull.

  • Medic says:

    Depression usually arises from hobby for any substances alien to an organism, occult , excessive listening of depressive music, the negative attitude to the world and surrounding people, constant self-digging and the underestimated self-estimat WBR LeoP

  • nesz says:

    useful article
    very interesting and teaching… me ;)

  • galgal says:

    nice one..thx for sharing =)

  • Omar Cruz says:

    Hey thanks for sharing! I really would try your ideas. :)

  • Working out an hour before bedtime then taking a warm shower helps with mental processes in the morning. Don’t believe me? Give it a try and see if your morning productivity increases dramatically. Works like a charm for me.

  • tea_junkie says:

    Do not drink coffee or expensive new age drinks. Cook chiphir! Buy the cheapest loose black tea, boil 4 oz per person in half-liter of water for 10-15 minutes.
    Drink hot. Have fun!

  • Falko says:

    Thanks for the software upgrade for my “three-pound supercomputer”. Actually Im practising some of your 22 ways, namely #4, #10, #18, #19. The result is my (german language) website http://www.positiverdenken.de on the Art of positive thinking.
    Cheers, FG

  • This one makes sence “One’s first step in wisdom is to kuesstion everything – and one’s last is to come to terms with everything.”

  • Peter says:

    Wow. This is exactly what I’m looking for!
    I am going to keep all the things you mentioned in mind!

  • Dave says:

    Its a scientific fact that the more you exercise your brain the chances of you getting Alzheimer’s is greatly reduced.

  • journeyist says:

    great, great post!! I do many of these things myself in the past but it pays to be consistent… this article serves a reminder. congrats for coming up with a nice title too :-)

  • Getnutri says:

    In your article u added information about drugs that increase brainpower like gingko biloba and gotu kola. In another article I read Ginkgo Biloba is gaining recognition as a brain tonic that enhances memory because of its positive effects on the vascular system, especially in the cerebellum (it’s a part of brain).

  • Michael Woo says:

    Yeah it’s a super computer, We have such a huge potential but we just don’t realize it..

    I saw the movie the secret and they say that the future is in our head/brain.. i think that it’s pretty true

  • A very nice article, and very interesting article too. Keep it up! Subscribing to your RSS feeds.

  • I’d prefer reading in my native language, because my knowledge of your languange is no so well. But it was interesting! Look for some my links:

  • muhabbet says:

    There was actually another article that had brain techniques in it too a few weeks back. if I find it, I’ll link it here.

    again…

  • weis says:

    Really informative article, it helped me a lot, had to come back a few times and readi it again. keep up the good work, thanks

  • PTCB Exam says:

    This is one of the best articles I have read in awhile. Thanks alot for this.

  • Georghios says:

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  • Thanks for a great article! For those interested in following the research on classical music and how it affects the brain, I post usually semiweekly summarizing the research thus far at http://www.wikyblog.com/CynthiaWunsch.

  • One of the best lists I’ve ever come across. Good solid and applicable advice. Dugg, plurked and twittered about it to my friends.

  • renier john dela cruz says:

    you know what.. in all forums i have read in my whole life i didnt reply for nothing… i really amaze your work here. you make my brain stimulates and make actively think for better and healthier… thanks

  • kamran says:

    We r loosing our concentration at place where we feel a sence of being inferior.
    Eithert it is a general discussion where we fail to represent actively , or facing opposit sex can’t answar up to our satisfaction etc.
    Or somewhre else when we feel inferior this destroys us concentration.
    Where concentration breaks our confidence breaks.
    So it’s main target how to avoid sense of inferiority and mentain concentration all the times.

  • LifeCoach says:

    This is a well written article, but it makes a common mistake. The mistake is confusing your mind with your brain. You see the brain does not think, you think with your brain, but the brain does not think. Mind is an activity that takes place in every cell of your body and your brain does provide a medium for some heavy duty computing power, but it is not the mind. In this article the author states: “Your brain determines how you think, how you feel, how you act, and how well you get along with other people. Your brain even determines the kind of person you are. It determines how thoughtful you are; how polite or how rude you are. It determines how well you think on your feet…” This cannot be true because by simply changing our mind we can change how we feel, how we act, how well we get along with others, what kind of person we are now and will become, etc. In short, if the brain were the controlling factor these things would be “fixed” and we would be slaves to the brain, yet we are not. Our mind is much more than just our brain. We need to remember that according to all the world’s greatest leaders, theologians, and philosophers over the past 6000 years we become what we think about.

    • bill verity says:

      @lifecoach I’m not sure this article makes the assumption that your mind is less than your brain, it is just stating that your mind is exactly what IS your brain. You just seem to like technicalities. We are powerful pieces of biotechnology and we should learn to use our resourcefulness to its full potential. Spread those synapses around, everyone.

    • NotALifeCoach says:

      @LifeCoach: Don’t forget about all of the leaders, theologians, and philosophers from even earlier than 6000 years ago!

      Homo sapiens have been around for almost 200,000 years! :)

    • Coa says:

      Sorry LifeCoach, but your brain does control your personality, thoughts, decisions, etc. Experiments and studies have already proven this. Your mind is simply an effect of your brain (although you might argue that your nerves are also a part of it).

    • Brain Surgeon says:

      Your brain is your mind. Saying your brain controls you is correct. We are merely a complex biological program which follows instructions .

      We have decision making process but we usually make decisions based on what we have learnt and previous experiances.

      For example we have muscle memory, for example fold your arms normally , now fold your arms with the top arm underneath . It feels strange right . That is muscle memory .

      The brain also has Procedural memory

      we are not concious of these controls but they also make up our mind.

      It is a very complex system which makes us seemingly unaware of the fact that we are really at the whim of our brain.

  • ashutosh says:

    Very nice and informative but what if ur line of work keeps you surrounded by demoralising people with low mentalities

  • Faren Price says:

    Very thought provoking article. Well done.

  • barillas says:

    I think there still some gaps Coach, in everyone’s theories (including mine). Mind is generally conceived as a blurred idea linked to spectacularity/religion/paranormality that can be conceived on a scientific way as brain alive/working/with eletricity. Taking a materialist point-of-view it can’t be conceived an Idea of “mind” without brain or even if they arent the same thing.

  • RonnBlack says:

    Exactly where did they find “mice who sat around all day discussing Lord of the Rings in Internet chat rooms”?

  • alice says:

    Yeah, I agree with RonBlack, what the heck?? But interesting article none the less.

  • brainmaster4000 says:

    I enjoyed reading this article very much and am excited to start applying some of these practices to my daily life, again.

  • hey! this article iz nice1! nd i m really thinking to follow some tips! hope it will work! well i definetly think ; YES!

  • shirley says:

    this article is very nice

  • arun says:

    It is likely to thing that mind is something similar to an operating system running the brain hardware.so if one is changing mind, meaning he switches the options of the operating system by default.like “dos” is there in windows .. there is an unconsious mind in all. which is at the least , difficult to be controlled from being in the awake mode.as it is not our consiousness.anyway let it be. we may use it for the boosting purposes like – u r doing something difficult to solve, tired, taking a break and getting a sleep .and by doing so let the unconsious mind work on it , after sleep the chances of getting a positive sol to the problem is more likely.i tried it myself..
    its just like the diffrence between when u r at ur first driving class (consious mind tries to do things) and u r now (unconsious mind ) that u feel very free to drive. changing gears and all even if ur not concentrating… thanks.

  • Kira crossing says:

    if you ask me “we don’t understand are brain’s/minds at all”

    but if we change the way we think it will change our minds/brain’s but it doesnt or IQ easy you have to train it the normal way

    it can make you happy or even train your IQ haha becourse if you change your live and do things that stimulate yourself is the best way of learning

    my dream isnt to be smart my dream is “to leave something that helps every one i leave behind”

  • Its amazing to know that our brain needs exercise, various activity and plenty of rest to be at its peak performance everytime.

  • DANISH says:

    i will try my best to apply the maximum among them the 22′s.

  • Ana says:

    Good article. The only thing wrong is “In fact, your brain has more connections in it than there are stars in the universe!” We don’t even know for sure how many stars exist, and some poeple may be confused and actually think it’s true. Otherwise I liked it.

  • Panocha Berry says:

    Word up hommie

  • sd says:

    I have been wondering for a long time whether there was any way of improving the functioning of my brain especially since I get distracted so easily and always low on motivation and drive. This aritlcle was definitely a good read and quite inspiring. Will definitely try out the suggestions provided. Have already started by practising one of the tips given: Write to be read:)

  • vaibhav says:

    great work gud keep it up

  • A very interesting article. I have recently learned in a TV docu that jogging is good for our mind as you wrote. Also the Mozart effect is something special. Mozart said that a symphony is in his mind, he only has to write it down. I ask myself, if he put the music together in his mind or if it came from the universal mind. – I would add one point to your list and this is meditation.

  • G-Man says:

    Were can I buy the drug or something similar to it that the guy in the movie Limitless was using?

  • Chi Guy says:

    I ABSOLUTELY LOVE this article!

  • Kavi Ivak says:

    Hi,
    The ideas mentioned in the article is good-no doubt about it.
    But I was thinking that instead of concentrating on our brain, why cant we concentrate on our selves, to understand ourselves first. I know that you might think that I’m inclining towards spirituality, but that’s not the case here. I’m saying that why don’t we concentrate in our present…
    Its the most difficult task ever(Trust me)..Try to be aware of every single activity that you do. Its also called living in the moment. If we focus on our present activities, then we wont be disturbed by our past or future related thoughts.
    We will be totally free and relaxed.. i think all of you should try it.
    I apologize if have hurt anyone’s feelings.

    Regards,
    Kavi Ivak

  • Very interesting post & good info…

  • Phil says:

    @LifeCoach – The Article is Correct with its wording, the Author did not confuse the Brain with the mind, as the Mind is an effect of the Brain a “Bi-Product” effectively, Your mind isn’t a seperate thing, Your Brain Creates the connections which in turn allows you to think, feel, etc.. Figuratively speaking, the mind does not Exist, As the brains main fuctions are all Based on 1 function Creating hundreds of Millions of functions (connections) – So basically, Your Brain IS your mind, mind is just another word for the Brains physical and Subconscious functions.

  • Kristen says:

    Interesting, but remember when looking at dietary studies, we must not confuse rats with humans. Just because a certain diet is detrimental to a rat, it does not prove anything about human needs. There are no studies that prove that saturated fats are bad for humans.

  • pradeep maurya says:

    this is a nice article i apriciate it.if u hav new another idea then mail me.

  • MB008 says:

    from d discusions on ‘make luv 4 ur brain’,emphasis were laid mor on sex bein of help 2 women.wat about men?

  • gradschool says:

    Think of the mind brain connection as a pilot and plane connection. the pilot does not actually fly the plane. However, he does “activate” the right things to make the plane fly as it should. The author here is just basically stating how to make your plane extra responsive and able to take orders better. Someone stated that we only use 10% of our brains, which is true however these tactics can help you use more of your brain therefore giving the mind more to “Control”….I know this is kinda confusing. Let me know if you dont understand

  • gradschool says:

    I really like the first one run up your brain. Kinda reminds you of how we are supposed to use Lithium batteries. for better performance they always tell you to run it all the way down and then charge. Just like the author is saying. Make sure you are exercising and using your brain, then have a good nights sleep….good brain keep up

  • starissswin says:

    Thanks, I enjoyed it and i think the entity mind and brain are often confused by many . So i may say that the brain is the physical manifestation of what we call brain (really isn’t it the center of all).

  • Joey says:

    I think this article is both very refreshing and helpful. It sort of reminds us that we do possess a supercomputer within us waiting to be unleashed and the only way to do it is to train our brain to unleash its untapped hidden potential.

  • Milad says:

    Great article. Since now on, I’ll surely be trying to put them in practice and hopefully will succeed. Thanks.

  • Gavin Dibley says:

    Might want to find a better analogy “In fact, your brain has more connections in it than there are stars in the universe!” as the universe is widely perceived as being infinite.

  • Autumn says:

    Are not all brains anatomically identical? So then… if our brain determined how we thought, felt, or acted then would we not all think, feel, and act the same??

    • Brain Surgeon says:

      Not all brains are the same , just like some people are taller , bigger, more muscle etc .

      However alot of our emotions and thoughts etc are created during living from experiance and learning from the time we are born till the time we die.

      We learn from our parents or people around us which shapes our mind.

  • Autumn says:

    Phil, youve got it backward. The mind controls your brain. The brain is just a vessel.Gradschool explained it well. Does the mind not exist because you cannot see it? In that case, I declare that you do not have a mind (because I can’t see it).

    • Brain Surgeon says:

      So what you are saying is that the mind is a mythical entity which can exist without the brain ? Sounds like fantasy to me.

      More likely , hence why people who take drugs or get brain damaged , is that the brain controls the mind.

      If you need proof of this then go down to the local tavern, consume or observe someone consume a large quatity of alcohol and then observe the change in their state of mind. The alcohol has affected their brain which makes them unable to think clearly .

      If the mind controlled the brain then people wouldnt do stupid things while drunk.

  • Kelly Grace says:

    Hello,
    Do you allow Pinterest or posting to personal blogs from your website? I’d like to share this article with friends. An attribution link appears which links back directly to this webpage.
    I majored in Psychology and have always been fascinated by this organ that holds the treasure that makes us each the unique people we are. Thank you for sharing this Brain Health Checklist.
    Best Regards,
    Kelly Grace

  • Jae says:

    I have an example. Your brain is the plain and your mind is the pilot. You have a certain plain with certain speed and settings that cannot be changed. You can however, change your piloting skills or the fuel you give it to enhance speed, and therefore work more efficiently. Once you are at your full potential, and have the best fuel, you can’t get any faster than that. Your brain and mind ARE different.

  • Steven says:

    The only problem I keep finding myself in is that once you start activating amd improving your brain it never ends. If I have a why question its “why do I feel like all this learning is consuming my life and my very personality?” Its like I cant stop searching for answers and the more answers I find the more shaky I get. I’ve taken multiple breaks to get back to reality, but wind up back in the curiosity lane applying all the knowledge I’ve gathered to everything. It sucks because it’s like the snowball effect, I don’t see things the same way anymore and it’s hard to find people to understand and percieve things the sameway I do. I almost feel seperated because everyday people don’t stop to think about things on a different level like I tend to do. They go about their day just living and dying but not cautious of the bigger picture. It’s almost depressing to me sometimes that I worry about every single thing and can’t just stop proccessing the information. I want to stop and take a break but it’s a habbit I took on by accident. Even at night I feel like my brain is just magnifying all the knowledge down to the smallest detail. My point is if your going to enhance your brain make sure your ready for an overwhelming amount of information that seems to mentally exhaust you on a daily basis because it wont stop. Because just like with everything else, once you start to get results you’re going to keep going and when your done with whatever it was you were seeking, you will move on to the next thing and than you will want to apply it to everything asking why. Soon it wont even be about asking why. You’ll find yourself just observing, quietly starting to notice things. Questions will be answered almost immidiatly and the people around you wont even realize how fast youve got something figured out. These people are in the dark and will break at the sight of any new obsticle because they have no way of using their heads except to go to work, pay bills and have sex. The truth will set you free, but when you’re free it’s almost like you don’t even know where to go.

  • Harsha says:

    interesting

  • Faisal says:

    I also have problems with brain sometimes… I mean think to hard and work too hard… Dnt relax much since im growing and have responsibilities…. Coffe helps… Sleep also helps but stress makes it worse.
    I get confused at times… And worry to much about my life but dont know how to hane the situations… Hole everyone use the examlles frm this site coz i will.. It will definately help out if we try them.. Good luck ;)

  • Faisal says:

    I also have problems with brain sometimes… I mean think to hard and work too hard… Dnt relax much since im growing and have responsibilities…. Coffe helps… Sleep also helps but stress makes it worse.
    I get confused at times… And worry to much about my life but dont know how to handle the situations… Hope everyone uses the examples frm this site coz i will.. It will definately help out if we try them.. Good luck ;)

  • Aoife C says:

    “Scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif., found that adult mice who ran on an exercise wheel whenever they felt like it gained twice as many new cells in the hippocampus, an area of the brain involved in learning and memory, than mice who sat around all day discussing Lord of the Rings in Internet chat rooms. ”

    I repeat
    “mice who sat around all day discussing Lord of the Rings in Internet chat rooms.” !!!

    What I want to know is why these computer savey L.O.T.R Fan-Mice aren’t a media sensation?…

  • Aoife C says:

    “Scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif., found that adult mice who ran on an exercise wheel whenever they felt like it gained twice as many new cells in the hippocampus, an area of the brain involved in learning and memory, than mice who sat around all day discussing Lord of the Rings in Internet chat rooms. ”

    What I want to know is why these computer savey L.O.T.R Fan-Mice aren’t a media sensation?…

  • Fizzle says:

    More recent articles suggest it is limiting to think of your brain as a computer – it is much much more amazing than that. I would love to see a fresh article with some updates regarding your experiences using these boosters.

  • Pauline says:

    Fascinating….bit boring having to have fish for dinner 3 times per week….

  • William Tecker says:

    Well I never think brain as a computer as your brain need rest,best way for improving your memory is keep an habit of reading and playing quiz games.
    Improve Memory

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