Have you ever felt like certain coworkers, friends, or family members learn new skills quickly? Somehow, these individuals seem brighter than the rest of their peers.
You might be wishing you had these smarts. Whether you want to advance your career, gain new talent, or perform better in all of life, added intelligence could be the key.
The good news? Everyone can learn how to become more innovative. You’ve even likely experienced this process yourself throughout your education. Almost everyone would say they feel smarter after four years of college than before.
In today’s fast-paced world, however, what are Some Simpler Ways to Become Smarter? With a few new habits, you can tap into your brain’s power and become smarter fast.
Is There Anything I Can Do To Be Smarter?
Can you become smarter throughout your life? Well, you can certainly learn more. You can gain experience and seek out a greater variety of backgrounds. And you can adopt new practices that may help you learn faster.
Your intelligence isn’t a set trait that you’re born with. Specific individuals might naturally be able to pick up new skills, languages, or talents more quickly. However, you can train yourself to do the same.
That said, boosting our intelligence doesn’t come without effort. Our lifestyles need to be able to support brain growth.
The food you eat, your growth versus a fixed mindset, and how well you take care of yourself all play a role in your ability to become more innovative. The small daily habits you choose can make a big difference in your efforts to become more creative.
11 Habits That Can Help You Become Smarter
Plenty of hacks and daily habits can help people on the road to becoming more competent. However, what may work for some may not work for others. Try out all the patterns below to see a real impact on your intelligence.
Here are 11 habits to incorporate into your daily life to become more innovative:
Reading can introduce you to new topics, stimulate your neural pathways and improve your brain health. Whether you grab a book from your shelf, download a reading app on your phone, or stop by the library, the important thing is to take the time to read.
For a bonus, consider trying non-fiction when selecting your next book. You’ll both learn new information and grow your vocabulary.
Surround Yourself with Like-Minded People
Spending time with intelligent people isn’t going to make you smarter magically. However, it will help you connect with people who inspire and motivate you to continue learning. Exposing yourself to new opinions and perspectives will give you more to think about. It is one ideal method for how to become more innovative and faster.
Start Exercising Daily
Numerous studies show a strong connection between physical exercise and brain function. When you are physically active, activity increases in your hippocampus — the part of your brain that promotes neuron growth; neuron growth can improve brain function, which is a great way to become more innovative.
Whether you sign up for your city’s marathon or start a daily 30-minute walk, any form of exercise will certainly help make you smarter.
Learn a New Language
Speaking more than one language exercises your cognitive abilities and improves how well you can multitask. Switching between languages takes a lot of concentration, focus, and self-control.
Some studies show that bilingual people are more intelligent than others. So if you want to know how to become more innovative, signing up for your nearest language class is a great way to get started.
Look For Learning Opportunities
You don’t have to stop learning if you aren’t a student anymore. Today, knowledge is endlessly available online — often for free or at a meager cost. Try listening to a podcast about a topic you’re interested in, or tune into TED talk videos.
You can also join a website like Skillshare or Udemy. Imagine how much brighter you’ll feel after dedicating 30 minutes on the weekend to learning something new.
Lower Your Screen Time
If you want to become more innovative daily, begin by keeping track of your screen time. Studies have shown that excessive smartphone use is detrimental to cognitive performance. Try using an app to set screen time limits and send daily mindfulness reminders.
You can also delete unnecessary apps from your phone or create a daily habit of not using your phone until after breakfast, for example.
Meditation is a powerful tool for improving brain function and increasing emotional intelligence. If you feel busy or overwhelmed, a meditation practice can allow you to pay attention to your body and how you’re feeling. This, in addition to using meditation to manage stress and anxiety, can free up space in your brain to focus and learn new skills.
Explore Video Games
In moderation, video games can help people develop decision-making skills and improve their focus. Many educational games teach people skills such as math and linguistics. In addition, fantasy and adventure video games can strengthen inferencing skills that carry over into real life.
Try Caffeinated Drinks
We all know that coffee gives us more energy. In addition, caffeine stimulates your ability to concentrate, puts you in a better mood, and can increase motivation. Being more alert will help you understand new information better. If you want to become more innovative and faster, a cup of caffeinated tea or coffee could be the push you need to get your brain working at top speeds.
Let Your Imagination Run Free
Allowing yourself to daydream and think creatively can help you process information and connect ideas. Sometimes we force ourselves to think too critically or seriously. Instead, we relax our minds and let ourselves believe creatively, stimulating our brains to remember things clearly.
Reflect on What You’ve Learned
When people want to be more innovative, it isn’t just about knowing a body of knowledge or technical specs. Often, they mean being able to do more with what they know. Maybe it’s to be able to make better choices.
When we think of someone in life whose “smartness” we aspire to, it might be a person who can connect the dots quickly or in surprising ways. It’s someone who can see the needed chain of steps to get a project done or grasp the implications of a new technology or how a public policy might affect their opportunities.
This type of intelligence gets a boost from reflection. Reflecting every day on what we’ve experienced and what we’ve taken away as a result is the core of learning. It helps you identify patterns and to start seeing the world through a lens of practices and change.
Starting new habits can be challenging. Sometimes, you need some support to add new things to your daily routine and develop habits of reflection and learning. If that sounds like you, a BetterUp coach could be the perfect fit to help you stay on track. Besides keeping you focused, a coach can ensure that the practices you’re working on are making an impact — for today and the long term.