Intelligence is what everyone wants to achieve and thrive on. It is a personality trait that is admired and looked upon. Smartness does not stop when you become older, it only grows if you enhance it the right way. Scientists and researchers have proof that neuroplasticity exists and you can further grow brain cells and get smarter. The only question is how to.
Some might be lucky to be born smart but there is more to just natural-born intelligence.
What Can One Do to Become Smarter
Listed below are habits to inculcate in your life to become smarter and a more confident individual:
1. Invest Wisely in your Time
With a proper focus on the direction you want to steer your life to – it is daunting to just do everyday simple tasks. To juggle between various areas of your life – establish clear goals by setting priorities as you keep aside the non-important tasks. Keep monitoring where is time slipping away. Sticking to the schedule with discipline will automatically make you feel efficient, smarter and more productive. Most important is to apply this to both your official and personal fronts.
To take Control of Time – understand the habits you need to overcome like anxiety, procrastination, instant gratification, lack of self-control. Balance your life, live in harmony plus create an environment to work so that you increase productivity and efficiency. As each day starts and ends – take out some time alone to assess what have you achieved. This will help you build self-awareness.
2. Be smart – with Your Smart Phone
‘Social Media Addictions’ and ‘Online Wanderings’ distract as well as eat up useful time. These habits often leave you with a feeling of guilt and uselessness.
The online platform is an ocean brimming with learning resources. Take up online classes, watch documentaries of famous people to get inspiration, watch Ted talks or Self-Help Gurus who will help you overcome Addictions of any kind. Moreover, you could hear audiobooks available online to enhance skills in your field, if you are too restless to sit down and read.
3. Smart People Read at least 30 minutes a Day
All successful people have one thing in common – they read a lot – not just for entertainment but for knowledge and skills. As per Corley “80% of the rich devote thirty minutes or more each day to self-education or self-improvement reading. Most of them did not read for entertainment. The rich read to acquire or maintain knowledge.” Smart people mostly read three kinds of books: biographies of successful people, personal development or self-help and history-related books.
Read Short Story on Why Should we Read Books?
Do you know – 1/4th American children do not learn how to read leaving them intellectually, socially and cognitively handicapped. As per research (2009), reading creates new white matter in kids brains. The white matter carries information to the grey matter in the brain where all information is processed. Thus helps you become smarter in communication and boosts brainpower.
“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on a Treasure Island.” – Walt Disney
4 Books recommended to make you Smarter:
- Rich Dad Poor Dad – Robert Kiyosaki
- Think and Grow Rich – Napoleon Hill
- Thinking, Fast and Slow – Dan Kahneman
- Smarter Faster Better – Charles Duhigg
4. Play Intelligent Games
Playing games, that too intelligent ones boost the intelligence of both kinds (Fluid and Crystallized). They help enhance your problem-solving abilities (fluid) along with improving how you learn along the way (Crystallized). Moreover, quizzes are one of the most obvious forms of brain-games apart from puzzles, riddles, logic quizzes, word games and video games.
Playing games enhance your cognitive skills. They benefit by improving visual awareness and levels of attention. As per a study – children with dyslexia improved as they played videos games for a span of 12 hours. It was mainly dependent on how the game commanded the player’s attention to the subjects.
5. Learn a New Language
Learning a new language can help you become smarter and improve your cognitive abilities. Neuroscientist, Elle Bialystok sais, being bilingual can develop the part of your brain that allows you to pick between languages and focus on the language at hand. Speaking and knowing a foreign language improves your communication skills and helps you to talk among wider groups of people.
Here, the regions of your brain involved in spatial navigation and learning new information increase in size and improves your overall memory. As per scientists, being bilingual boosts your intelligence and delays the onset of dementia by 5 years. Even better, if you know 3 languages it delays it by 6.4 years. Moreover, speaking 4 or more languages will delay dementia by a decade. When you learn a new language, your brain is learning a new set of words including grammatical use. This exercises your brain and activates the part of the brain that retains all your memory.
So, what are you waiting for? Learn a new language, practice it daily and become smarter.
6. Hang out with other smart and Positive people
“You are only as successful as those you frequently associate with.” – Corley
Smart and Successful people are forever looking out for others who are optimistic, goal-oriented, smarter than them, enthusiastic and are overall positive in their approach to life. By hanging out with other people who are smart – you will learn from their conversations, experiences, struggles, and success. Positivity is a hallmark for all the self-made smart people.
Same as it is to hang out with smart people – it is also important to keep away from negative influences. Negativity is a deterrent to your path to becoming smarter. You may be unaware of your thoughts. Stop and listen to them, become aware of your thoughts. If you identify negative thoughts then only you can start walking on the path of awareness. So, think like the person you want to become.
“We become what we think about.” – Earl Nightingale
7. Exercise daily for 30 minutes
50 % of successful people wake up at least three hours before they start work and exercise daily. Other than health benefits exercise also has cognitive benefits. Physical exercise is basically bringing food to the brain, which is the blood supply. Physical therapist Aideen Turner says exercise enhances the process of neurogenesis that builds new brain connections and improves brain plasticity. It gives your brain a serious boost, releasing happy hormones, serotonin that make you smart and confident.
Try to be active for at least 30 minutes a day, whether it’s walking, jogging, swimming, cycling or dancing to improve your cognitive abilities and to become smarter.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act , but a habit.”
Michael Jordan Most famous Quotes and Life Facts
8. Practice mindfulness Meditation
To become smarter, practice mindfulness through meditation brings you to the present moment and helps you understand yourself better. Practising mindfulness meditation boosts your ability to make smarter decisions.
If you ever thought that multitasking is a skill, you are wrong. It only damages your brain and known to lower your IQ. Studies have discovered that those who allow themselves to be distracted have a 10 to 15-point decrease in their IQs. Thus, being present in the moment increases your concentration, sharpens your mind and helps you to think clearly.
Therefore, practice yoga or meditation every day to clear your mind off thoughts that hamper your brain growth and leave you distracted. To help you focus on the moment, try practising Mantra Meditation as it will keep your mind focused on the sound than on your thoughts.
9. Travel to become smarter
Did you know that those who travelled and exposed themselves often to unfamiliar places produce more neurons in their brains? Only in the anticipation to experience something new and exciting. Travelling helps you become smarter.
Travelling expands and broadens your mind, giving you the ability to look at things with a new perspective and an open mind. When you travel, you are forced to think in new ways and embrace unique cultural practices. This further creates neurological connections in your brain and improves your ability to think logically. It makes your brain take smart decisions and feel confident and independent.
“It’s like the smarter you are, the more things can scare you.” ― Katherine Paterson
Smart people are not essentially smart-by-birth!
You can become smarter as long as you are focused towards your goal to become one. The simple 9 ways to become smarter will help you ina ll spheres. If you need more help in any of the above areas enrol for our online ‘Become Smarter – Not Mediocre’ classes by writing to us at [email protected]
If you think there is anyone in your life who you think will help by reading the Tips above – please share our blog with them and help them grow Smarter! Leave a comment below to tell us if you know of more ways to become smarter.