7 Creative Hobbies That Will Make You Smarter (according to science)


6. Work out your brain.

Sudoku, puzzles, riddles, board games, video games, card games, and similar activities increase neuroplasticity. This encompasses a wide variety of changes in neural pathways and synapses that is basically the ability of the brain to reorganize itself. When nerve cells respond in new ways, that  increases neuroplasticity, which allows us more ability to see things from different points-of-view andunderstand cause and effect of behaviors and emotions. We become aware of new patterns and our cognitive abilities are improved.

Considering that neuroplasticity is involved in impairments such as tinnitus, an increased amount can help prevent certain conditions. For instance, people with high neurplasticity are less prone to anxiety and depression while learning faster and memorizing more.

7. Meditate.

In 1992 the Dalai Lama invited scientist Richard Davidson to study his brain waves during meditation to find out whether he could generate specific brain waves on command. Turns out that when the Dalai Lama and other monks were told to meditate and focus on compassion, their brain waves showed that they were in a deeply compassionate state of mind. The full research results were published in “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences” in 2004 and then in the Wall Street Journal, where it received an enormous amount of attention.

Meditation became interesting to ambitious people because the study implied that we can control our own brain waves and feel whatever we want to feel whenever we want to. This means we can feel more powerful right before a negotiation, more confident when asking for a raise and more convincing during a sales call.

The general idea is that the brain can develop further and you can do it on purpose. Different activities stimulate different areas of your brain, so you can work on becoming unbeatable at your strengths as well as improving your weaknesses. Focusing self-improvement on the brain is a good idea for anyone who feels they are at their professional peak (or maybe just have stopped getting better), ambitious professionals and of course entrepreneurs who are looking to maximize their potential.