Thanks for visiting and reading. I personally am excited that you are here because that means you are taking steps towards improving yourself. You are here because you would like to get ideas on how to strengthen your mind. I am happy to share what has worked for me.
As with most self-improvement tasks, this is going to require commitment, determination and patience. To make it an effective change that will last, I have made working on my mind an integral part of my lifestyle. Some of the tools I use are brain games, learning new things, meditation, visualization, reading/writing and purposefully wading out of my comfort zone.
Learn Something New
The internet has made learning nearly anything a possibility. Most recently I have educated myself on the uses of essential oils using the internet, local library and speaking with someone who has been using it to complement her own healing practice. I built my own computer from scratch after watching an in depth video tutorial on how to do it from picking out the right parts to actually assembling it.
I have found that the more I learn, the easier it is to learn. It becomes quicker to pick up a new skill. There are times that it feels like I learn more in one week about a subject than I ever did during an entire semester in college (and without the exorbitant costs!). It is also more enjoyable when you are choosing exactly what you want to learn as opposed to being told you have to learn a particular subject.
This is the one that will seem the most counter-intuitive, yet it has yielded amazing results. Our thoughts can become so hectic at times that it helps to just turn it off for a while. When your computer begins to work slowly or erratically, rebooting typically brings it back to operating efficiently. If you have never meditated before, do not expect super-mind results overnight. Expect to be frustrated, because our thinking mind does not want to be turned off.
You should begin to see results within a couple of weeks if you are practicing daily. Meditation is about bringing your focus to the present and the easiest way to do this is to focus on your breath. You may only be able to count to 5 breaths at first before a random thought comes into your mind. With practice you will be able to observe this thought and gently let it go and continue to focus on counting breaths.
Visualization is another technique I enjoy using. This is essentially focusing on a desired outcome and experiencing what it feels like. For example, you may want to start your own business. Picture yourself doing what you love. Imagine what success looks and feels like to you.
The unexpected benefit from this is that the steps to get from where you are today to where you picture yourself begin to form clearly in your mind. At this point it is just a matter of taking action.
Read and Write
Reading will help your mind whether you are reading to learn something new or even if it is just for enjoyment. My goal is to read at least 30 minutes every day, but often it is much more. Writing is the active form of reading. Blogging or journaling allows your mind to gain an even deeper understanding of the subject that you are writing about.
Move Out of Your Comfort Zone
Are there things in your life that you avoid doing out of fear? Facing these fears head on adds new experiences to our memory bank. Afraid of public speaking? Join a group like Toastmasters to practice it. Afraid of snakes? Ask a friend that has one to show you how to handle it. These experiences serve to destroy the limiting belief of fear that is preventing you from doing something.
Play Brain Games
This is my favorite. It is fun, challenging and makes a nice break between projects. I have been using Lumosity.com for the past 4 years. There is a feature that picks 5 games for you to work on each day. I average completing this task 5-6 days each week. It keeps track of your cognitive performance as a standardized score called your Lumosity Performance Index. The games are broken out into 5 different categories: Speed, Memory, Attention, Flexibility and Problem Solving.
Even after using it for this long my score continues to improve. There have been plateaus and dips during the time I have been using, but I have broken through each one eventually.
Of course I also consider Reiki as a very powerful tool to keep your mind healthy, but I wanted to limit this post to items you can do on your own for the most part. There are a number of other things that can be done to increase your brain power, and I would love to hear any additional ideas you may have on the topic in the comments below.
Have a beautiful day!