10 Habits of Highly Effective Brains

>> Monday, March 2, 2009

If you are reading this, the good news is that you have a brain inside your head. And you have probably read about the emerging brain fitness movement: frequent articles in the media, an ongoing PBS special, more and more products and games. let's take a look at some of the habits of Highly Effective Brains:

1. Learn what is the "It" in "Use It or Lose It".

A basic understanding will serve you well to appreciate your brain's beauty as a living and constantly-developing dense forest with billions of neurons and synapses.

2. Take care of your nutrition.

Did you know that the brain only weighs 2% of body mass but consumes over 20% of the oxygen and nutrients we intake? As a general rule, you don't need expensive ultra-sophisticated nutritional supplements, just make sure you don't stuff yourself with the "bad stuff".

3. Remember that the brain is part of the body.

Things that exercise your body can also help sharpen your brain: physical exercise enhances neurogenesis.

4. Practice positive, future-oriented thoughts until they become your default mindset and you look forward to every new day in a constructive way.

Stress and anxiety, no matter whether induced by external events or by your own thoughts, actually kills neurons and prevents the creation of new ones. You can think of chronic stress as the opposite of exercise: it prevents the creation of new neurons.

5. Thrive on Learning and Mental Challenges.

The point of having a brain is precisely to learn and to adapt to challenging new environments. Once new neurons appear in your brain, where they stay in your brain and how long they survive depends on how you use them. "Use It or Lose It" does not mean "do crossword puzzle number 1,234,567". It means, "challenge your brain often with fundamentally new activities."

6. We are (as far as we know) the only self-directed organisms in this planet. Aim high.

Once you graduate from college, keep learning. The brain keeps developing, no matter your age, and it reflects what you do with it.

7. Explore, travel.

Adapting to new locations forces you to pay more attention to your environment. Make new decisions, use your brain.

8. Don't Outsource Your Brain.

Not to media personalities, not to politicians, not to your smart neighbor, not to this blogger... Make your own decisions, and mistakes. And learn from them. That way, you are training your brain, not your neighbor's.

9. Develop and maintain stimulating friendships.

We are "social animals", and need social interaction. Which, by the way, is why the Baby Einstein series has been shown not to be the panacea for children development.

10. Laugh. Often.

Especially to cognitively complex humor, full of twists and surprises. Better, try to become the next Jon Stewart, and create your own unique humor.

Keep in mind that what counts is not reading this article - or any other one - but practicing a bit every day until small steps snowball into unstoppable, internalized habits... so, pick your next battle and try to start improving at least one of these 10 habits during the holidays!

By Alvaro Fernandez
Huffington Post


KhaLifah feDi March 2, 2009 at 3:41 PM  

ea tq about that info..



helena's March 2, 2009 at 4:56 PM  

bile bace ni cik hel teringat kata pj~gunekan hati untuk melihat kalo mata dah tak nampak..trying to POSITIF!

Anonymous March 2, 2009 at 8:01 PM  

for me, life is the best therapy. lantaklah orang kata aku tersengih ke or whatever. yang penting i smile. hehe..

wiseman March 2, 2009 at 8:18 PM  

be positif!

Anonymous March 3, 2009 at 12:31 AM  

cik hel dah mention nama aku
adeh adeh
jom jom gelak kf!

Leenoh March 4, 2009 at 8:12 PM  

Saiz otak sebesar bola tenis (tennis) mengadungi 20% oksigen dan 15% darah ( kalau tidak betul tolong betulkan ). sebab itu orang darah tinggi tidak boleh stress, agaknya kerana tidak cukup oksigen kerana darahnya pekat. hehehe. agak-agak ja

Max J. Potter March 6, 2009 at 1:41 PM  

thanks mate. this one's really useful. =)

wiseman March 6, 2009 at 2:38 PM  

Thanx to ur all

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