If you want the long story, I wrote a very long post on my personal blog.
Here is the long story short(er) errr, not as long.
- Be mindful – be in and aware of the present
- This means not having your head buried in a smart phone and checking Twitter every 2 minutes. I’ve read enough studies that show how this behavior is detrimental to the brain. Yes, detrimental to the brain itself.
- Be deliberate – force yourself to ask “what am I doing now and why?” and “what am I not doing, and why?” and “what should I be doing, and why?”
- Have purpose – The previous series of questions should uncover productive things. If not, find something productive/enlightening/intellectually simulating/ social, etc.
- Like a couch potato, you should not let your brain become a potato either.
I had no idea how much downstream those methods positively affect. What I’ve learned recently is so, so, so eloquently described in a book I’m reading right now, The Accidental Creative. I highly recommend the book.
Also, one overarching method above all else is to DO. I’m not saying I’m finished with this endeavor, but I’m sure I’ve pinpointed my roadblocks. Had I not started to travel down this road full steam, I would not have stumbled into these critical realizations. There is a point where you need to put theories to the test. And if they don’t work for you, surely you’ll learn something else or be put on another path, and eventually the right path.
I’ve also taken the advice of the other books I’ve read. I’ve forced myself out of my comfort zone. I’ve identified and focused on what I’m passionate about. I’ve completely dropped any time wasters. And most importantly, I haven’t forgotten my current strengths while working on my weaknesses.
Also, I’ve stumbled on some far out stuff… Only time will tell if this stuff will prove successful. It doesn’t hurt to try, right? Through all of this, I sort of came across a relatively newer field of neuroscience (disclaimer: I’m not a doctor, I don’t play one on TV, and I did not stay at a Holiday Inn last night) that deals with neuroplasticity. In layman’s terms, just like you can adhere to a healthy diet and exercise program for the body, there are things you can do to influence and improve the brain (like meditation, positive thinking and certain brain games and exercises). I’ll post more about this in upcoming posts, but I completely believe in it and trust the neuroscientists on the forefront of this. I’ve started the brain games and will start meditation soon. One book I read mentioned, “the mind influences the brain, and the brain influences the mind.” So you can very easily put yourself into a downward vicious cycle of a spiral if you don’t do the right things to stimulate your brain–or vice versa.
Also, also… There is not doubt that there is interconnectivity between the mind and body. So physical exercise and healthy eating is a big part of this all too. You can read about my healthy living pursuit on my personal blog as well.