Plans, deadlines, tasks. The whole chaos of everyday life takes its toll on our brain. Therefore, to survive the wild pace, we need to take a good care of it regularly. But how do we do that? Well, there are some simple methods, which can be a real reward for our brain and our mental health and here I am going to share 10 of them.
10 Rewards That Your Brain Needs Every Day!
♦Take a short nap during the day or close your eyes for a few minutes when possible.
We’ve all heard about the benefits of the afternoon sleep. It really is very important. This refueling not only restores our energy but also activates the brain activity, improves memory and increases the mood and concentration. Only 10-15 minutes of a nap per day are enough to significantly change the heavy duty cycle. After them you can return to work, filled with fresh powers and ideas.
By the way, many successful and productive people use the short naps as a way to boost their energy levels in the second part of the day. In fact, people like Margaret Thatcher and Winston Churchill have been known for their habit of taking short power naps.
Of course, I know that many of you, including me, are having a very active lifestyle and don’t always have the time or the place for a nap. Therefore, the closest thing to a nap that I do is to simply find a place to sit comfortably somewhere quiet (psst…a bean bag is the perfect place for that purpose :D) and close my eyes for a few minutes. In those few minutes I try to focus on my breathing and relax my tension as much as possible. You can give a try to this method during your work break or whenever you feel you need a little rest.
♦Little creativity before bedtime
You’ve had a hard day? Grab a pen and a paper and draw or doodle a little before hitting the bed in the evening. This will help your brain not only to relax, but also to activate your creative abilities, which you will enjoy the next day. Even a simple act like coloring in an anti-stress book can help you reduce the tension from the day.
♦ Say “no” to multitasking!
This is definitely not the first time I am saying it but multitasking (as practical as it may look) is not the best way to get more things done. If you are aiming for maximum productivity and best results, load your brain with just one task at a time. Only in such mode can it work most efficiently. But how do we achieve this in today’s working conditions? Here is my tip which works great when it comes to managing many tasks – draw up action plans and proceed sequentially to the tasks one after the other. Use lists to write down and prioritize and color-code each thing with multi-color pen. This way, you will achieve much more than if you do all at once. And you will get less tired.
♦Try to be physically active
There should be balance between using your brain actively and being physically active. If most of the things that you do require a lot of mental energy and you lack enough of movement, sooner or later you may start to experience issues like lack of motivation, sleeping disruptions, and even mental burnout.
Exercises, however, are of great benefit to the brain. Activities such as running, walking and swimming not only tighten the body but also strengthen the “muscles” of the brain and mental activity. It is proven that only 15-30 minutes of exercise every day (even if it’s just a walk) are a real elixir for the tired brain and can help you vent out a lot of stress. Therefore, my suggestion is try to find some physical activity that you like to do every day – sign up for some sports, yoga, dance classes, jogging, fitness or simply do regular exercise at home or daily walks.
♦Do not give up the pen and the paper
Thanks to computers, smartphones and other gadgets, most of us rarely take pencil and paper in hand. Pity! Because research shows that the use of a paper notebook and pen activates the brain, improving its performance and efficiency. Many people find a lot of mental relief when keeping a journal or writing things down in a planner. Here I’ve shared more about the therapeutic effect of starting your own journal and some inspiring ideas on what you can use it for to boost your productivity, motivation and efficiency.
♦Do not forget the vitamins
Inform yourself about which foods contain a lot oft vitamins and minerals and pay more attention on how to balance your diet and give your brain some brain-boosting food. Group B vitamins, as well as C, D, E and P, are proven to improve brain function, short-term and long-term memory, and increase concentration. Therefore, it is a good idea to try to include foods which are rich on nutrients and packed with those vitamins as much as possible. One of the best ways to incorporate healthier and nutrient-rich foods in your diet is to explore the powers of the superfoods.
♦Learn something new
This is one of the best rewards for the brain. Learning new things (it could be a foreign language, some new information, a new skill) is something like gymnastics for your brain and helps it reveals its hidden potential and train the memory. For instance, you can use an app like Duolingo to start learning a new language or sign in for one of the many e-courses you can find on platforms like Skillpages, Slideshare, Udemy or Coursera.
♦Play with the words
Word games are enjoyable, they raise the mood and are very useful for mental activity. They even increase the intelligence factor and help the brain work. You can easily find free word games online on sites like WordGames or MindGames.
♦Meditate or listen to relaxing sounds
Meditation is one of the best ways to relax – both physically and mentally. It soothes, relieves tension and affects favorably all the brain zones. Daily meditation can greatly improve the condition of your body and spirit.
If you find it hard to practice meditation, my suggestion is to simply put some relaxing music on and have it play around the house for a while when you feel like you need to release the tension. Music is proven to affect the brain and picking the right sounds that make you feel good can immediately have an impact on your mood and overall brain function.
For instance, you can pick a music collection specifically created for stress-relief, concentration and relaxation or use a background white-noise machine which can play different nature sounds that have a calming effect on you. During this time, try to sit somewhere comfortably and relax as much as possible while sinking in the sounds.
Positive thinking is necessary for your brain to be fully satisfied and effective. Optimistic mindset provides foundation for new discoveries, ideas and opportunities, helps us cultivate good habits and improve ourselves and gives an excellent motivation for future development.
Of course, I know that it is not possible to be always positive about everything and there are days when you may need some little positive kick and inspiration. Fortunately, there are many simple tools you can use to support your optimistic mindset. For instance, you can start to surround yourself with positive affirmations. You can also listen to positive audiobooks and podcasts or watch empowering videos.
A trick I use is, I keep a daily positive affirmations box and randomly pick a quote every day and try to go by my day with this quote in mind. There are also positive affirmation cards and quotes which you can carry with you. You can even use a favorite mug with some nice message or a calendar on your desk.
Do you have more ideas on how to reward your brain for the hard work? Feel free to share them in the comments below!
A Little Note & Thanks
- Thanks: If you see a product you like and you purchase it using the links on this site, LiSt Contents receives a very small commission at no extra cost to you. We carefully research and only suggest products we believe in.