There is a general perception that we can’t do much to enhance our intelligence. It’s almost always believed that whether you’re smart or not is determined right at birth and you can’t do anything about it.
However, these are all misconceptions. While some people have conditions that prevent them from being able to increase their intelligence level, for most people, there are plenty of things that can be done to make them smarter.
Hobbies are integral parts of our lives, and once developed, we find ourselves immersed in them on a regular basis. Hobbies are fun and invigorating- and they can also have a great influence on our intelligence.
Below are 10 hobbies that will help to make you smarter- all backed up by scientific studies and experiments:
1. Play a musical instrument.
Confucius said a long time ago, “Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without”. Music stimulates your brain, and this has been proven by research as well.
Music has the power to invoke complex emotions and psychological states. Various researchers have shown that both listening to music and playing a musical instrument increases memory capacity.
Playing a musical instrument also teaches you patience and perseverance for it takes time and effort to learn to play a musical instrument. It also sharpens your concentration.
2. Read voraciously.
Reading goes a long way towards increasing your intelligence level- this is further the case if you read voraciously across many different topics, from fiction and biographies, to anthologies.
Reading reduces stress, helps you to experience multiple emotions, and teaches you a lot about many subjects. All these factors help you to feel better about yourself; being at peace with yourself is one of the most important foundations for positive wellbeing.
Reading is very important for enhancing your knowledge on a subject, preparing for all sorts of situations and being more productive in how you go about achieving your goals.
3. Meditate regularly.
The foremost benefit of meditation is to help you focus on yourself and to get you to know your true self. Being engrossed in meditation helps individuals transcend to a higher state of being.
Meditation helps to reduce stress levels and gets rid of all sorts of worries. With a calm and composed state of mind obtained through meditation, you can learn, think and plan things in a much more effective way.
Regular meditation helps you to have full control over yourself. Being aware of distractions and effective methods of self-control are of the utmost significance when working to improve your intelligence.
4. Work out your brain.
Just as you need to work out regularly to keep your body fit, you also need to work out your brain to keep it in good shape. Regularly challenging the brain to do new things enhances its abilities and helps to keep you sharp.
You can work out your brain in plenty of ways such as through: sudoku, puzzles, board games, and riddles. All these activities help the brain to continue forming new connections. Through such activities you also learn to respond to situations in creative ways, develop the ability to see things from a lot of different perspectives and become significantly more productive.
5. Exercise often.
A healthy body helps to ensure that you have a healthy brain. After all, your brain is like another muscle in your body. Exercising regularly keeps your brain and body functioning as they are supposed to. It reduces tension and helps you to sleep better.
Doctors agree that better blood circulation to the brain means increased brain function. Various studies on mice and humans have shown that cardiovascular exercise can create new brain cells, and thus improve overall brain performance.
6. Learn a new language.
Learning a new language may not always be an easy task but it definitely has numerous advantages-making you smarter, being one of them.
The process of learning a new language involves tasks such as analyzing grammatical structures and learning new words, which enhances your intelligence and brain health.
It has also been proven through various experiments that people with high levels of verbal-linguistic intelligence are great at planning, decision-making and problem-solving.
7. Write your feelings down.
There are tons of benefits that you can receive from writing, including increasing your overall level of intelligence.
Writing improves your linguistic abilities, of course. But it also helps you to develop such skills as focus, creativity, imagination, and comprehension.
Writers are often considered as having very high levels of intelligence. You can write in different ways. You can write things with your hand or you can create your own blog. Whatever you do, you are giving words to the images in your mind; learning to express yourself clearly is a great way to boost your intelligence.
8. Travel to new places.
Travelling is not just a way to kill your boredom- there’s lot more to it than that. Travelling can really boost your intelligence.
The physical and mental workouts involved with travelling, rid your mind of stress. As you become stress-free, you are more able to focus on tasks, observations, and deepening your understanding of subjects.
Every new place you travel to offers new things to learn. You encounter diverse people, food, culture, lifestyle and society while travelling, which puts you in touch with ideas you might never have thought of previously.
9. Cook different kinds of meals.
Many of us feel that cooking is a mere waste of time and it’s something we very much want to avoid.
But instead of whining, you should feel happy when you have the opportunity to cook. Regular cooks, particularly the ones who try out a variety of meals, have high levels of creativity. They are committed to quality, aren’t afraid to try things out and they pay great attention to details.
Whenever you cook something, you are learning to multitask, measure with precision and make quick decisions. With all of these skills you’re acquiring, you’re becoming smarter too.
10. Participate in sports actively.
Participating regularly in sports activities doesn’t only exercise the muscles but also does the same for the brain. Playing sports regularly makes the brain more flexible and improves overall brain health.
Sports have added benefits too. Watching sports has been linked with increased brain function, and through exercising you work out your muscles. Involvement in sport also enhances responsiveness, coordination, capabilities, and confidence.
Top athletes are known for their special form of intelligence. It doesn’t matter whether you play football, basketball or cricket. Consider being regularly involved in some form of sport to boost your brain’s performance.
Featured photo credit: Tatyana__K via shutterstock.com