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11 Stress-Busting Mindset Hacks You Need in Your Life Right Now

11 Stress-Busting Mindset Hacks You Need in Your Life Right Now

We live in a fast-paced, competitive, and stressful world. You may believe that you’ll eventually make it big, but there’s no escaping the everyday doubts and disappointments that everyone faces. However, there’s no reason to blame yourself at all.

According to the American Institute of Stress, 80 percent of workers are stressed with their job due to increasing hours, concerns about job security, and personal issues. When left unchecked, stress will slowly consume you—physically and mentally—and will cause you to miss out on the better things in life.

It may be hard, but you need to be resilient. Despite the blur we call life, you need to stay focused on your goals. Here are 11 mindset hacks that will help you do this:

1. “Can I do something about it?”

The golden rule of managing stress is to focus only on what you can control. Doing otherwise will only waste your time and energy. The disappointment will also lead to even more stress.

The key here is to liberate yourself and save your energy for things that count. Every morning, determine the tangible goals you can accomplish that day and try not to be distracted with meaningless things, like the bad weather, heavy traffic, and the sour attitude of your boss.

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2. Try a little humor

A dose of humor is an excellent cure for stress. Whenever you feel overwhelmed with work, try taking a break and revisit an episode of your favorite sitcom. Social media also makes it easy to find lighthearted videos – be it a prank or an animal video.

3. Drink a little caffeine

Stress and being out of energy are closely connected. Fortunately, people have known a cure for midday drowsiness for years. Not only will a cup of coffee help stimulate the brain, it will also provide you with an excuse to have a 5-minute break from work.

Studies have shown that coffee has positive effects on a person’s mood. Just remember to keep it moderate and not have more than 400 milligrams of caffeine in a day.

4. Try being mentally neutral

    A lot of people experience stress by focusing on one of two extremes. After all, not everything has a “right” or “wrong” answer. You can avoid a lot of stress by looking for a middle ground. For example, just because a co-worker has a different idea from yours, doesn’t mean you can’t work together for a common goal. Put the differences aside and look at the things you can agree on.

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    5. Try a little less

    People today can learn a lot from the philosophy of minimalism. Rather than giving in to consumerism and aiming to have more, you should roll back to the essentials and prioritize value. Web designers, for example, prioritize user experience over fancy graphics and visual effects.

    You can apply minimalism to your life in a variety of ways. A good start is to embrace minimalism at home and focus on owning less possessions. In addition to organization, having a minimalistic home will also lead to big savings in the long run.

    6. Look for the “at least” in every failure

    “Too bad the employer didn’t choose me, at least they pointed out the weaknesses in my resume.” Nothing is more powerful than the spirit of a lifelong learner. Remember that every failure has a silver lining. Leverage them and make a commitment to improve yourself.

    7. Isolate home from work

      Everybody deserves an escape from a hard day’s work. Unfortunately, some people deny themselves this privilege and choose to resume working when they get home.

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      If possible, try to discuss with your boss the possibility of postponing urgent assignments until the next workday. Home is where you should be resting, not a place to worry over tomorrow’s deadlines.

      8. Ask for help

      A lot of stress at work can be avoided if only you asked for someone else’s help. It doesn’t matter if you’re unsure about something or simply incapable of handling all the tasks yourself. At the very least, you should accept the input of others and learn.

      9. Try stress-busting apps

      Yes – there are now mobile apps and games for busting your work-related stress. Alternatively, you can look at apps that can help you organize and maintain your life/work balance.

      10. Look forward to future events

      It doesn’t matter who you are or what you do; there’s bound to be something you’re looking forward to right now. Admit it, there should be a few things that popped into your head upon reading the last sentence.

      Whether it’s an upcoming birthday or a new movie, you need to identify these simple pleasures and appreciate that you have something worth looking forward to.

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      11. Experience the joy of others

      Sometimes, the key to beating stress is to be selfless and focus on the happiness of others rather than yourself. If there’s nothing you can do to cheer yourself up, perhaps there’s something you can do to lighten up someone else’s day.

      Remember that it doesn’t take much to do something good for another person. Showing your gratitude by saying “thank you” should be enough to put a smile on someone’s face. Now that you thought about that, try to remember the last person who helped you out. It’s payback time.

      ____

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      Woman girl freedom happy sun, Freedom sky hands handcuffs clouds Via Pixabay

      Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

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      Last Updated on July 11, 2019

      10 Best Brain Power Supplements That Will Supercharge Your Mind

      10 Best Brain Power Supplements That Will Supercharge Your Mind

      If you have watched movies like Limitless[1] (both the movie and television series) and Lucy,[2] then you have likely come across smart drugs or nootropics. In the movie Limitless, you are introduced to NZT-48 (known as MDT-48 in the book The Dark Fields), which grants heightened intellectual abilities allowing one to pattern-match at lighting speed.

      In the movie Lucy, you are introduced to the drug CPH4, which is actually based on a molecule that a pregnant woman produces after six weeks of pregnancy. The director of Lucy, Luc Besson, remarked,[3]

      “But it’s totally real, and it’s true that the power of this product for a baby is the power of an atomic bomb. It’s real. It’s totally real. So its not a drug in fact, it’s a natural molecule that pregnant women produce.”

      NZT-48 is fictional and CPH4 is a fictional drug based on a real substance. So, are there any real life smart drugs or brain boosters similar to either fictional drug? The answer is no. But powerful cognitive enhancing drugs do exist. And they are Nootropics.

      Nootropics

      Nootropics was coined by Romanian psychologist Corneliu E. Giurgea in 1972. The etymology of the word is nous or mind and trepein or to bend.[4] According to Smart Drug Smarts, nootropics is an umbrella term for a class of chemicals, some naturally-occurring and some man-made, that give cognitive benefits to the human brain. To be a nootropic, Giurgea found that the substance must meet five specific criteria:[5]

      1. Enhance memory and ability to learn.
      2. Help the brain function under disruptive conditions.
      3. Protect the brain from chemical and physical assaults.
      4. Increase the efficacy of neuronal firing control mechanisms.
      5. Possess few or no side effects and be virtually non-toxic.

      Let’s now examine the 10 best brain power supplements that will supercharge your mind and 4 bonus tips (in no particular order – meaning #1 is not better than #2 nor #10). Very few of the brain boosters listed can be purchased in a local brick and mortar store.

      For most, you will have to place an order online. However, be extremely cautious and diligently research each prior to ordering.

      For a more detailed breakdown of each brain booster in the form of a wiki, I recommend visiting the website BrainTropic[6]. I will provide a summary for each smart drug below. Summaries will be from BrainTropic unless otherwise stated. In addition, visit my website (you can find the link in my bio) as I regularly write and provide advice on nootropics.

      *Some of the supplements listed require a prescription and could be harmful. Consult with your doctor before consumption.

      1. Qualia Mind

      Qualia Mind is an extremely powerful smart drug created by Neurohacker packed with a variety of nootropics. It is a multi-nootropic leading to potential neurochemical and physiological enhancements.

      Qualia Mind is specifically designed to lift brain fog, amplify willpower, upgrade energy, heighten creativity, and promote mental clarity. No prescription is required.

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      Side effects: headaches, sleep disturbance, muscle tightness, and upset stomach.

      Summary
      • Type: Multi-Nootropic (crucial ingredients include: Acetyl-L-Carnitine, DL-Phenylalanine, N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine, Taurine, L-Theanine, Alpha GPC, Citicoline, Anhydrous Caffeine, Huperzine A, and more)
      • Good for: Energy, Focus, Learning, Memory, Motivation, and Physical Performance
      • Typical Dose: 7 capsules per day (maximum of 12)
      • Half-life: 4-6 hours

      You can learn more about Qualia Mind in Neurohacker.

      2. Modafinil

      Modafinil is a stimulant to treat narcolepsy and has been shown to enhance our cognitive functions. Sold under the names Vigil, Nuvigil or Provigil, has became one of the most popular cognitive enhancing drugs on the market.

      Bio-hacker and founder of Bulletproof Coffee, Dave Asprey, is just one of many advocating the drug. Some think Modafinil inspired the movie Limitless. For more on this discussion, read I Spent a Week on Nuvigil, the Drug From ‘Limitless’ and Modafinil: My Experience with the Real Life Limitless Pill by Joen Rude Falsner. Falsner remarked about Modafinil, it’s “Sort of like a real life pop-up blocker…”

      In the US, Modafinil is classified as Schedule IV Controlled Substance and a prescription is required for it. Potential side effects: headache, dizziness, nausea, diarrhea, nervousness, and trouble sleeping.

      Bonus Tip: Top Modafinil researchers have found that Modafinil combined with coffee can create a powerful combination.[7]

      Summary
      • Type: Stimulant
      • Good for: Energy, Focus, Learning, Memory, Motivation, and Physical Performance
      • Typical Dose: 50-200mg
      • Half-life: 15 hours

      3. Adrafinil

      Adrafinil is a stimulant that can increase energy and prevent fatigue. It is metabolized and converted into Modafinil. In fact, the effects are similar to Modafinil; however, it is not as strong. No prescription is required for Adrafinil in the US, Canada, or the UK.

      Potential side effects: headache, dizziness, nausea, diarrhea, nervousness, and trouble sleeping.

      Summary
      • Type: Stimulant
      • Good for: Energy, Focus, Learning, Memory, Motivation, and Physical Performance
      • Typical Dose: 150-600mg
      • Half-life: 1 hour

      4. Noopept

      According to braintropic.com, Noopept is a powerful synthetic nootropic with cognitive enhancement and neuroprotective properties. It was developed in Russia in the mid-1990s and is used as a prescription treatment for cognitive impairments. Researchers found that, in animal studies, Noopept has been shown to stimulate the expression of two chemicals: Nerve Growth Factor (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF).[8]

      Potential side effects: headaches, restlessness, dizziness, and irritability.

      Summary
      • Type: Peptide
      • Good for: Anxiety, Energy, Focus, Learning and Memory
      • Typical Dose: 10-20 mg
      • Half-life: 30-60 minutes

      5. Adderall

      Adderall is a stimulant used to treat those with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Adderall primarily increases the release to two specific neurotransmitters involved with ADHD: dopamine and norepinephrine.

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      For an interesting read on what Adderall does to the brain – to include a good discussion of the benefits and side effects of the drug – read What adderall does to your brain by Daniela Hernandez. Similar to Modafinil, some think the movie Limitless was inspired by Adderall.

      For more on this discussion, read Limitless: The Brain-Doping Movie We All Know Was Inspired by Adderall and The Drug From Limitless Is Available for Purchase on Your College Campus.

      Adderall is considered a Schedule II Controlled Substance and a prescription is required for it. This means anyone caught in possession of it without a prescription could face criminal charges. Potential side effects: irregular heartbeat, paranoia, headaches, restlessness, dizziness, lack of appetite, high risk of dependency, and irritability.

      Summary[9]
      • Type: Stimulant
      • Good for: Energy, Focus, Learning, Memory, Motivation, and Physical Performance
      • Typical Dose: 5-40 mg (Adderall XR is 5-60 mg)
      • Half-life: 4-6 hours (Adderall XR is 6-8 hours)

      6. Oxiracetam

      Oxiracetam was developed in the 1970s and is a synthetic derivative of the original nootropic – Piracetam. However, according to braintropic.com, Oxiracetam is more potent than Piracetam. Oxiracetam has been studied for treatment with those suffering from Alzheimer’s or memory.[10] No prescription is required for Oxiracetam.

      Potential side effects: no serious side effects – the most commonly reported side effect is headache.

      Summary
      • Type: Ampakine and Racetam
      • Good for: Energy, Focus, Learning and Memory
      • Typical Dose: 400-2400 mg
      • Half-life: 8 hours

      7. Bulletproof Coffee

      Dave Asprey (also an advocate for Modafinil) is the creator of Bulletproof Coffee. Asprey contends that Bulletproof Coffee is clean and tested for toxins.

      However, when you first read about Bulletproof Coffee, you hear about the combination of Butter – Oil – Coffee. That can’t be a good combination, right?

      Wrong. It is.

      Bulletproof Coffee has been found to help with weight loss, boost cognitive functioning, maintain mental clarity, and decrease brain fog. For more on Bulletproof Coffee, read What It’s Like To Drink Bulletproof Coffee Every Morning For Two Weeks by Chris Gayomali. Potential side effects: restlessness, anxiety, insomnia, and rapid heart rate.

      Summary[11]
      • Type: Stimulant
      • Good for: Mental Clarity, Decrease Brain Fog, and Weight Loss
      • Typical Dose: Varies by type of coffee (e.g. Coffee Pods or Brew)
      • Half-life: Varies

      8. Cellucor C4 Ultimate

      Cellucor C4 Ultimate is a powerful pre workout supplement. It provides an instant cognitive boost so that you can not only get the most out of your exercise training sessions, but also maximize your ability to learn (even during exercise).

      C4 Ultimate should be consumed 20-30 minutes prior to training. No prescription is required for C4 Ultimate.

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      Potential side effects: insomnia, diarrhea, dehydration, headaches, high blood pressure, and tingly or prickly sensations. To counter these side effects, read Pre-Workout Supplements: 6 Side Effects and How To Avoid Them by Matt Weik.

      Summary[12]
      • Type: Pre Workout (crucial ingredients include: Vitamin C, Vitamins B6 and B12, Niacin, Citrulline Malate, Caffeine Anhydrous, Taurine, Beta-Alanine, Creatine Nitrate, and N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine)
      • Good for: Energy, Pumps, Endurance, and Physical Performance
      • Typical Dose: 1 scoop with water
      • Half-life: Varies

      You can get Cellucor C4 Ultimate at Cellucor.

      9. Piracetam

      Piracetam is the first synthetic smart drug developed and is the compound that inspired the term nootropic. It was invented by the same individual who coined the term nootropic – Dr. Giurgea.

      According to Brain Tropic, Piracetam works by improving blood flow in the brain, boosts the production of crucial brain chemicals, and increases synaptic plasticity.[13] It requires a prescription in the UK and Australia and cannot be legally marketed in the US as a dietary supplement.

      Potential side effects: no serious side effects – the most commonly reported side effect is headache.

      Summary
      • Type: Ampakine and Racetam
      • Good for: Learning and Memory
      • Typical Dose: 1600-4800 mg
      • Half-life: 4-5 hours

      10. Qualia Focus

      Qualia Focus is another product offered by Neurohacker. It too is a multi-nootropic with powerful cognitive enhancements. While it is not as strong as Qualia Mind, it still upgrades your energy, heightens creativity, and promotes mental clarity at a lower cost than Qualia Mind. No prescription is required.

      Side effects: headaches, sleep disturbance, muscle tightness, and upset stomach.

      Summary
      • Type: Multi-Nootropic (crucial ingredients include: Acetyl-L-Carnitine, DL-Phenylalanine, N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine, Taurine, L-Theanine, Alpha GPC, Citicoline, Coffeeberry Energy, Ginko Biloba Leaf Extract, Huperzine A, and more)
      • Good for: Focus and Concentration, Memory, and Energy
      • Typical Dose: 5 capsules per day (maximum of 9)
      • Half-life: 4-6 hours

      You can learn more about Qualia Focus in Neurohacker.

      While the brain boosters listed above are not the smart drugs in Limitless or Lucy, they still provide you phenomenal results. To find out which of the 10 are the best for you, I suggest you do the following:

      1. Research each one diligently
      2. Test them out for yourself
      3. Try the following Bonus Tips along with your brain booster. In doing so, you will discover a pop-up blocker for your brain!

      Bonus Tips

      1. Take antacids to increase potency

      To increase the potency of a brain booster, ingest alkaline substances like antacids such as Tums or Alka-Seltzer. Read A Brief Guide to Non-medical Psychostimulant Use for more information.

      You should consult with your doctor as there could be serious side effects.

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      2. Take on an empty stomach

      You should take your brain booster on an empty stomach as this will further potentiate both the duration and effect of the drug. The exceptions are Qualia Mind and Focus. I recommend taking both with food as this will cause an upset stomach.

      However, you should consult with your doctor prior to taking any of the brain boosters listed and to identify the proper way to take each.

      3. Adderall alarm clock

      There is an interesting definition in the crowd-sourced online dictionary Urban Dictionary:[14]

      The Adderall Alarm Clock is defined as setting an alarm for an hour before you have to get up; upon waking, roll over and take your prescription stimulant of choice and go back to sleep. In about an hour, you wake up naturally with a smile on your face and a spring in your step.

      This actually works. Choose one of your brain boosters and try this out.

      However, you should consult with your doctor prior to attempting this as there could be serious side effects.

      4. Exercise sparks neurogenesis

      Exercise alone will provide similar benefits and could be substituted for any of the brain boosters listed. Exercise plus brain boosters provide even more cognitive enhancing benefits.

      One of the most powerful benefits exercise provides is that it sparks the production of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) which brings about neurogenesis. Neurogenesis is the process by which new neurons are formed in the brain.[15]

      Dr. John Ratey discusses both neurogenesis and BDNF at length in his book Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain. Ratey dubbed BDNF the master molecule and refers to it as “Miracle-Gro for the brain”. Linda Gabriel writes about BDNF in BDNF – Miracle-Gro for the Brain, “BDNF binds to receptors in the synapses between neurons, increasing voltage (yes your brain is electric!), and improving signal strength.”

      Featured photo credit: Josh Riemer via unsplash.com

      Reference

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