#1: Question, Question Everything!
Why? Because they say that the only stupid question is the one that isn’t asked; and this my friend, is 100% true. Asking the right questions will create a huge impact in both the short and long-term by fostering critical thinking skills, establishing trust, to avoid making mistakes, and among many other reasons, asking the right questions will help you make better choices and decisions.
Asking questions does not make you look unintelligent or ignorant; contrary to popular belief, asking questions will allow others to perceive you as a sharp, bright and intelligent individual empowering itself with knowledge.
Why? Because knowledge is having the right answer, intelligence is asking the right question!
#2: Read to Learn, Learn to Read!
Make yourself and the rest of the world a favor, Read! You don’t necessarily have to read a book a day, but, a book a month will increase your knowledge, your vocabulary and comprehension skills.
There are so many interesting and helpful books to read, but it doesn’t stop with books. You can read blogs, trade journals, work project documents, and even e-books!
Learn how to read smart by eliminating distractions, picture what you’re reading, look up any words you don’t understand, highlight interesting facts, and ask yourself questions that you have about what you read.
“If we encounter a man of rare intellect, we should ask him what books he reads.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
#3: Surround Yourself with Smarter People than You
Whatever you choose to do in life, at work and socially, surround yourself with people that are smarter than you. Surround yourself with individuals that will disagree with you; not for the sake of it, but to prove a fact by challenging you into debatable and knowledgeable conversations. Surround yourself with people willing to hold cultured conversations in a social setting, and with people that will push your limits by teaching you how to become smarter leading by example.
“It is one thing to be clever and another to be wise.”
― George R.R. Martin
#4: Exercise Your Body
We already know that exercise has many great benefits for the body. But, did you know that exercise has many benefits for your mental health as well?
Consistent exercise has a positive impact on your mental health by improving memory, relieving stress, boosting your overall mood, it provides you with natural energy, it increases your productivity, boosts your immune system, and it allows you to sleep better. Regular exercise also has a positive impact by diminishing depression, anxiety, ADHD and more. Research indicates that even a little bit of exercise can and will make a difference no matter your age or fitness level. So, what are you waiting for?!
“The body achieves what the mind believes.” – Unknown
#5: Exercise Your Mind
Your brain is capable of incredible and amazing things, and this is a proven fact!
Just as working out and adding lean muscle to your body to help you retain more muscle in your later years, following a brain-healthy lifestyle by targeting brain exercises will also increase your brain’s cognitive reserve. Specifically, it’s ability to endure neurological damage due to aging and other factors.
There are many easy ways exercises to sharpen your mental skills and here’s a list with 10 of my favorite brain exercises.
- Brush your teeth with your opposite hand.
- Embrace Sudoku and crossword puzzles.
- Ditch the calculator and do the math in your head.
- Take up a foreign language.
- Make a list of items, memorize the list, and try to recall it an hour later.
- Turn off your GPS, I promise, the world will not come to an end.
- Learn a new word every day.
- Solve a game puzzle.
- Build something; anything!
- Skip your contacts app, and memorize your friend’s and family’s phone numbers.
“One man that has a mind and knows it can always beat ten men who haven’t and don’t.”
― George Bernard Shaw