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Practical Ways To Make You Smarter Every Day

Practical Ways To Make You Smarter Every Day

If there is one thing that can make you feel great about yourself, it is without a doubt the sensation you get when you know you are the smartest person in the room. Of course, there is no guarantee that you are actually smarter than everybody else, but when only you can answer a tough question, or solve a puzzle, it make you feel like a star. However, being smart is so much more than puzzle-solving, and having facts galore at your disposal. After all, there are different types of intelligence, and they all tap into the potential of our brain.

Basically, any new skill you acquire, or simply honing an existing skill, learning a new piece of information and even discovering something new about yourself, are all factors that make you smarter in some way. The problem is, you don’t always get a chance to shine, so in the majority of cases we have no idea just how smart someone is.

We can either assume someone is either smart or not-so-smart based on a series of experiences we’ve had with that person. In other words, do not try to be smarter in order to boast, it can easily backfire. You should seek knowledge for knowledge’s sake, and these following approaches will make that possible.

1. Find a hobby that’s right for you

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    Hobbies are a great form of escapism, and they can improve you and fulfill you at the same time. Therefore, you should devote your time to something that you find both interesting and challenging. There are many hobbies that encourage you to use a lot of brainpower, like playing chess, video games, solving crossword puzzles etc. These can provide amazing brain gymnastics, and even reward you with a sense of achievement. As far as gaining information and insight is concerned, there will be little progress in this department, but these are not the sole determiners of one’s wits.

    2. Practice holistic learning

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      If you want to be a walking encyclopedia, you’ll have to master the art of holistic learning and use it whenever possible. This can come in handy if you are in college and trying to prepare for mid-terms and finals. Basically, holistic learning means you connect any new piece of information with something you already know.

      This means you need to think hard while learning, but, as a result, you get a solid database, which can turn out to be quite useful in the long run. The more you implement holistic learning, the more information you will gain with less and less studying. Your brain starts to turn into Wikipedia, and any topic slowly acquires more and more relevant links to it.

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      There are many techniques that can help you master the art of holistic learning, and an author named Scott H Young did a pretty elaborate piece on the topic.

      3. Let learning be your motivation

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        This is closely connected to the previous statement, however, the difference is that holistic learning is about being efficient at learning, and this is about learning to discipline yourself to crave new information. One thing that hinders our motivation to learn is the grading system. Sure, it was intended to motivate us, but we do not master every subject with ease. As mentioned, there are several types of intelligence, and none of us can excel in each field. Some are better at sports, others at music or math etc. However, a negative grade can be demotivating, and it makes us give up on something we could easily have found interesting.

        This is why I said you should gain knowledge for knowledge’s sake – if you flunked some subjects during your education, give them another shot, as every field of science has a lot to offer. You can check out the YouTube channel CrashCourse, or watch the first season of Cosmos – A Space Time Odyssey or Through the Wormhole. These are all amazing shows, and you will feel a lot better when you start to grasp some concepts that previously seemed too complex.

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        4. Admit when you do not know something

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          Maybe it’s just personal experience, but I feel that, due to peer pressure, we tend to behave like we know something, even though our insight in the matter is rather poor. And it makes no sense – why would someone judge you for not knowing how to do something, or not knowing a certain fact? However, we do feel like we are looked down upon, so we try to act “cool”. As a result, we only risk making a bigger fool of ourselves than we would by simply saying “Sorry, I don’t think I know what you are talking about.”

          If you don’t know something, but want to learn about it, why pretend in the first place? And if you are not interested in the topic, why pretend that you are?

          5. Don’t make reckless decisions

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            Now, you should not be the ultimate prude, and compulsively create scenarios before you make a minor decision. That kind of thinking will eat away at you, and cause a lot of stress. However, there are decisions that we can make on a whim, or in the heat of the moment. There are also things that drastically change the status quo in your life, and even though they are a necessity, you should think long and hard before rushing into these decisions.

            For example people are prone to get into debt in order to create the wedding of their dreams. If the happiest day of your life causes so many issues down the road, then it will only turn into a bad memory. You can always have a decent wedding now, and if you have enough resources some day, you can throw a party to adequately celebrate your marriage. Moreover, decisions to change your job, or entire career can be classified as reckless, so take as much time as you need to dwell on those thoughts before deciding to make the next step.

            6. Make lists

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              If you want to grow into a smarter individual, you need to have your own definition of smart. What kind of skills would you need, what kind of goals do you need to achieve, and what do you need to experience in order to stand out from the crowd. In other words, make lists. The list should contain everything you need to create the perfect version of yourself. It’s not a project that should be completed, rather it’s something you need to continually improve upon.

              7. Read books

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                Finally, the best way to become smarter is to read books on an everyday basis. Even reading an instruction manual makes you smarter, let alone a quality masterpiece. You can do some research on a website called Goodreads, and find a book that is perfectly suited to your needs and sensibilities. It is perfect for both intellectual and spiritual growth, and if you have attention span problems then you can always get an audio version, and follow the text as the voice actor reads the piece. That’s what I do, at least. Books are definitely the whole package when it comes to becoming smarter – you have a good story, you learn something new and, very often, adopt a better perspective on things.

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                Djordje Todorovic

                Blogger, Gamer Extraordinaire

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                Last Updated on June 13, 2019

                10 Best Success Books You Need to Read to Be Great at Business

                10 Best Success Books You Need to Read to Be Great at Business

                Take a minute and think about some of the most successful people you know.

                I’d bet they’re great with people, are super-productive, and think differently than most. After all, that’s how they got to be where they are today.

                Jealous of them? You don’t have to be.

                You can learn these same skills by studying some of the best business and success books that can help you take your game to the next level. Here’re 10 of my favorites:

                1. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

                  Dale Carnegie’s best-selling book that helped to launch a personal growth empire should be required reading for everyone who wants to learn how to build and nurture relationships for a lifetime.

                  Read this book and you’ll learn some simple advice than can help you build popularity points within your current network and just as important, expand it to others.

                  Get the book here!

                  2. Focal Point by Brian Tracy

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                    Got a lot on your to-do list? Of course you do. But what separates productive people from others is their ability to focus on a singular task at a time, and getting it done before moving on to the next one.

                    Sounds simple in theory, but this can be extremely difficult in practice. In Focal Point Brian Tracy offers tips to help build discipline and organization into your day so you can get more stuff done.

                    Get the book here!

                    3. Purple Cow by Seth Godin

                      Creating a “me-too” product can be easy at the start but can doom you to business failure. That’s why marketing maverick Seth Godin recommends creating a product that is truly different from anything already available in the marketplace.

                      In essence by making the product different you’ll be building the marketing into the actual product development…which just makes your actual marketing a helluva lot easier.

                      Get the book here!

                      4. The Magic of Thinking Big by David Schwartz

                        If you’ve struggled with procrastination or small thinking, this is the book for you. In it Schwartz offers practical advice that can help you get inspired and motivated to create a bigger life for yourself. And with it can be a more lucrative and rewarding career.

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                        Get the book here!

                        5. Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankel

                          It can be difficult for lots of people to keep things in perspective, especially when working on high priority and urgent projects at work.

                          Man’s Search for Meaning can be a life-changing book in the sense that it can open your eyes to a first-hand experience of one of the greatest atrocities in the history of mankind, while also teaching a valuable lesson about having purpose.

                          Get the book here!

                          6. The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss

                            Solo-entrepreneurs can learn a ton from the guy who made lifestyle design popular. But guess what? The 4HWW isn’t just for guys and girls who want to start a small online business.

                            Smart moves like outsourcing, following the 80/20 rule, and automating processes should be made by entry-level workers and established executives alike.

                            Get the book here!

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                            7. Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill

                              I remember sitting on a couch and opening this book on a Saturday morning, thinking I’d get through a chapter and then get on with my day. Instead, about 12 hours later, I was finished with the book. The concepts in it were mind-blowing to me.

                              To think that thoughts can create your reality sounded a little far-fetched at first. But after going through the book and understanding that your thoughts create your beliefs, which lead to actions, which then lead to habits….well you can get where I’m going with this.

                              If you focus your thoughts on success, achieving it will be much more likely than thinking about obstacles, failures and everything else that can get in your way.

                              Get the book here!

                              8. The One Minute Manager by Kenneth Blanchard

                                If you’re going to read one management book in your life, this should be it. It’s simple. You can read it in an afternoon. And the advice works.

                                Get the book here!

                                9. The Lean Start-Up by Eric Ries

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                                  Before you create any sort of business you’ll want to give Lean Start-Up a read through. Doing so can save you money, time and other resources you could have potentially wasted otherwise.

                                  Get the book here!

                                  10. The Monk and the Riddle by Randy Komisar

                                    The story Randy Komisar shares in the Monk and the Riddle offers advice about not just about how you need to think when starting a new business, but also about how to build a life you’re passionate about.

                                    Understanding the technical aspects of launching a start-up is great, but if you don’t have the staying power to stick with it when the going gets tough then it’s not likely to work.

                                    This book can help you understand this lesson before you spend blood, sweat and tears on a project that you’re heart isn’t into.

                                    Get the book here!

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                                    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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