How to become smarter
Whether you are a small business owner, growing your career or already enjoying retirement, your need for mental clarity never really changes. The sharper your thinking, the easier it is to make sound decisions quickly and confidently. Yet even on a good day, occasionally we all struggle with a lack of focus and feel clouded in our thinking.
Like most personal growth, learning how to become smarter starts with your will. Once you’ve made the decision to increase intelligence, implementing intellect-boosting strategies in your life becomes natural.
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What does it mean to increase intelligence?
To get a grasp on how to increase intelligence, we must understand what intelligence is. But even the experts can’t agree on a single definition. Psychology Today reports that since there is no universal model of intelligence, intellect entails many activities, including the ability to think, reason and comprehend, versus acting out of instinct. Most broadly, we can think of intellect as mental functioning that lets us respond to environmental pressures, with more finely-tuned components varying by culture (i.e. analytical, social and emotional skills). Emotional intelligence is a whole different beast, that incorporates some of the same concepts.
Mastering how to become smarter requires nourishing the intellect in all its nuanced complexity. What increases intelligence, and what practical strategies will boost yours? We’ll discuss 11 tips including exercise, diet, sleep, supplements, emotional mastery, mindfulness, challenging your brain, listening to music and keeping a journal.
How to become smarter
Want to know how to get smarter? It’s not just about reading more books or doing crossword puzzles. You must take a holistic approach to fuel your brain, body and mind.
1. Exercise regularly
Regular exercise helps maintain cognitive functioning by sharpening the mind. According to the Huffington Post, researchers used neuroimaging to demonstrate the impact of physical exercise on the brain. Exercise balances metabolic functions that impact brain functioning while increasing oxygen intake, hormone release and neurotransmitter activity. Jumpstart your body to boost your intellect by incorporating stretching and aerobic activity into your daily schedule.
2. Follow a nutritious diet
Base your diet on organic vegetables and meat that fuel your mind with natural energy. To start mastering how to increase intelligence, try Tony Robbins’ 10-Day Energy Challenge. In just 10 days, you’ll revamp your diet, energy levels and overall outlook. It’s one of the best tips for how to get smarter – from the inside out.
3. Consume healthy fats
Healthy fats, which are high in omega-3 fatty acids, benefit the brain and heart to enhance overall cognitive performance. If you’re concerned about including more fat in your diet, try omega-3 supplements instead.
4. Drink green tea
Those who know how to become smarter often have similar daily rituals, including a healthy, caffeine-free morning drink. Former president Obama started his day with green tea, and for good reason. It has powerful antioxidant properties that protect against free radicals, boost metabolism and enhance working memory, making it an effective tool for increasing emotional IQ.
5. Get enough sleep
To learn how to get smarter, get some shut eye. The links between sleep and mental health, stress and medical conditions like hypertension are well-documented. Studies have also shown that sleep improves both procedural memory (motor skills) and declarative memory (the ability to recall facts and information). Even mild lack of sleep can decrease working (short-term) memory. The amount of sleep required varies by person but is usually at least seven hours.
6. Take brain-boosting supplements
Tony Robbins created high-performance supplements to help increase intelligence. Try Energy Now, a pre-workout formula designed to sharpen your mind and ignite physical activity, or NeuroBoost-B12™, a berry-flavored B12 lozenge formulated to improve focus, mental clarity and brain function.
7. Master your mindset
Understanding how to increase intelligence ultimately boils down to mastering your mindset. Learning to take control of your thinking takes practice, but it’s your first step to increasing your mental sharpness. There are many tools for mastering your mind. Use the power of priming as a tool to set your intention each day so you’re not distracted by challenges that arise. By focusing your mind and body, you’re able to think and plan more clearly. As you find clarity, you’re able to observe your own thoughts and pinpoint any limiting beliefs that are holding you back.
8. Stay mindful in the present moment
When you’re lost in thought or distracted, it’s difficult to focus and sharpen your thinking. You must become mindful of the present moment in order to increase intelligence. Mindfulness meditation is used around the world to still and clear the mind. Research by the National Institute of Health underscores the impact of meditation on neurodegenerative diseases. The study examined the effect of meditation on memory and overall executive functioning in participants suffering from neurodegenerative diseases. Overall, meditation was shown to have a positive effect on memory, attention, verbal fluency and cognitive flexibility. The benefits were so pronounced that researchers deemed meditation a potentially suitable alternative to pharmacological treatments for some elderly patients seeking to prevent cognitive decline. You can start a daily meditation practice with just a few minutes each day.
9. Challenge your intellect
Keeping your mind sharp and active is key to understanding how to increase intelligence. Challenge your mind with stimulating puzzles and games that really make you think, like crossword puzzles or word games. In one study, researchers tested young adults’ cognitive functioning while the subjects played video games. Playing mentally-engaging games increased working memory and quickened mental processing, both of which contribute to overall intelligence. Learning how to play an instrument is another fun way to increase intelligence. This skill involves many different parts of the brain, including memory, pattern recognition, coordination and listening. You’ll create new neural pathways and increase your brainpower.
10. Listen to music
Music is a powerful way to open up your mind and begin to unlock how to become smarter – and you don’t have to play an instrument to get these benefits. Many studies have found music benefits one’s memory due to its deep connections with emotion and experiences. Listening to a type of music known as “binaural beats” could also help you increase intelligence. Binaural beats are a type of music that plays a different tone in each ear. This “works out” your brain in a novel way and may improve sleep, memory recall and long-term memory.
11. Keep a journal
Researchers at Ball State University studied the impact of journaling on cognition in athletes. When journaling was added to the subjects’ athletic training curriculum, it enhanced their ability to think critically, write focused arguments, reflect deeply and express emotions. Journaling also helped students bridge the gap between classroom and clinical settings, since it helped them explore various options for handling daily tasks.
Implement this holistic approach to increase intelligence and learn how to get smarter right away. For deeper insights into understanding how to increase your intelligence, try Tony Robbins’ Ultimate Edge, your tool for discovering your true desires and overcoming obstacles.
Discover how to increase intelligence with these strategies
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