Tuesday, March 15, 2016

12 Ways to Increase Your Brain Power

We already know how smart you are, since you're reading this blog post! But if you'd like to increase your brain power, these 12 ways will help. I found the first 11 on brain specialist Dr. Daniel G. Amen's blog, and the 12th--a fun method I use to stretch my brain muscles--is my own idea. I have also added some of my thoughts to Dr. Amen's.

1. Learn something new--an obscure president's name, a variety of flower, even a little-known verse to a song.

2. Learn more of something you already know about, on a deeper level. Are you an expert on cats? Study a particular breed. Do you know a lot about novel writing? Read an article or a book about non-fiction techniques.

3. Make new friends. Meeting new people and getting to know them keeps our brains active, and helps our emotions thrive as well.

4. Hang out with smart people. Go to the library, the art museum, or join a history club. Smart people will pull us up to new levels of intelligence.

5. Analyze, compare and contrast. Don't just say "Mom and I are nothing alike." Tell us how Mom loves to cook, clean and sew, but you would rather plant a garden and read romance novels. These type of mental comparisons  are good workouts for  our minds.

6. Cross train with someone at your job. Even if you only work with one other person, ask them to show you how to create a spreadsheet or make a car part, while you teach them mail merge.

7. Learn a new word. Then use it at least 12 times in the next month, to keep it active in your brain.

8. Read a book or take a class on something you never considered studying. For me, that would be astronomy, oil painting, or Asian history. What about you?

9, Forgive. The mental and spiritual work of telling the Lord, "I release this person to you--deal with them in Your love and mercy," opens your mind to new levels of creativity and sets your spirit free from judgement.

10. Do something kind. Stepping out of our me-me-me world to help someone else is a lovely way to relax and rejuvenate our brains.

11. Turn off the TV. TV is a mindless way to entertain ourselves. We watch others do their lives--whether exciting or silly--rather than experiencing life for ourselves.

12. Memorize Scripture. This one is the most fun, as it helps you overcome the devil while five ways memorizing Scripture enriches your life and Fun tricks to memorize Scripture. 
increasing your brain power. For some fun ideas on how it can help, see my posts on

Which ways to increase your brain power stood out to you? What will you do today to help yourself to grow even smarter than you are already? 

P.S. Tomorrow, March 16, is the final day to enter the Goodreads Giveaway for a signed copy of my new book Shock the Clock: Time Management for Writers and Other Creatives. 


  1. I really like the sentence you used in #9. "I release this person to you--deal with them in Your love and mercy," I never thought of asking God to "deal" with them in His love and mercy. Punishment or whatever isn't my responsibility.

  2. Ha, such a great list, I can say YES to every point made! I threw my tv out of the window 25 years ago, if not longer, never regretted it!

  3. Ha, such a great list, I can say YES to every point made! I threw my tv out of the window 25 years ago, if not longer, never regretted it!

  4. I hadn't thought that comparing could be a good thing! However, I do see how it can be good 'mental workouts' too, when we keep the comparison in that context.

  5. Jeanette: As we exercise our muscles to become stronger, we need to exercise our brains. I enjoy doing cross word puzzles. Sometimes, they are tricky but I always learn from them. When I was in the rehab center, a friend got me a 'word search' book. They also can tax my brain.

  6. Hi Jeanette! Hang out with smart people huh...I wonder if I do that? But I do love the 'turn off the TV' advice. Nothing makes my brain go to sleep more than sitting in front of that darn screen. Maybe I should add the computer too. Too much time in front of FB or Googling places is really silly too.
    No chance of that this week! My daughters family (three kids ages 4,2, 7 months) is here. I should be brilliant by next week!

  7. So...that was me commenting under my SIL's name. He changed the gmail on me. Well, looks like I'm not that smart yet!!

  8. Hi Jeanette - we definitely need to expand our brain boundaries ... and learn as we go ... the tv has to go - but sometimes it's down time ... my brain constantly 'works' and adds info in ... the blog gets some info out! But thankfully ... I'm fairly balanced and don't do FB - but then I don't have children etc ...

    Excellent tips you've given us here .. cheers Hilary


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