While you can deadlift to grow your muscles, the mental equivalent is not as obvious. How do you strengthen your mind when the vast amount of reality television and empty internet content is threatening to bog your brain down on a daily basis? The modern world is filled with an incredible amount of distractions, but it also offers a wide array of resources to sharpen your mental prowess. Luckily you don’t have to pull a Thoreau and unplug in the woods in order to reach peak mental performance. Follow these tips to best navigate mental growth in the modern world.
Work on emotional intelligence
There are many kinds of intelligence, but one that can, unfortunately, be undervalued in this day and age is emotional intelligence. In order to improve both your personal happiness and relationships with others, emotional intelligence is an essential skill to sharpen. Emotional intelligence involves the capability to process, understand, manage, and express your own feelings in an effective manner and use this understanding to engage with others successfully.
To practice emotional intelligence, work on reducing negative emotions. You might not have control over a whole lot in life, but one thing you have complete control over is yourself. Be aware of the way you react to events and actively work on replacing negative, fearful emotions with positive, uplifting ones. Think of your body as a fortress and do not allow the outside world to disturb your inner peace and tranquility. Learn how to be vocal and assertive in a respectful way so that you can express your emotions rather than suppress them. This means working on being a more proactive person. You can’t expect the world to understand you and meet your demands if you are unclear of what they are yourself.
Take advantage of educational resources
While the modern world might be filled with an overwhelming amount of distractions, it also contains invaluable tools that you can take advantage of to grow your mind. Earning online degrees is the modern answer for education on the go. With the ever-rising cost of living, many can’t afford the luxury to attend school without a job. Online education affords you the chance to earn your degree around your hectic schedule.
While earning a degree will open new doors up for hiring opportunities down the line, it also affords the opportunity to expand your mind. Education causes us to challenge beliefs, explore outside of our comfort zone, consider different perspectives, and push ourselves mentally. Structured education provides assignments and deadlines that help keep the learning process on track. It’s just an added bonus that you’ll earn a degree at the end of the process.
Leave your comfort zone
It’s impossible to grow if you don’t afford yourself the opportunity to expand. Venturing outside of your comfort zone enables you to challenge and expand your perceptions of the world. Often the hardest part about leaving what feels comfortable is getting started on breaking your routine. Humans are creatures of habit, but there are a number of steps you can take to push yourself outside of your quotidian living in order to expand mentally. Start by forcing yourself to switch up one aspect of your daily routine. Find what feels comfortable and break it. Force yourself to try something new, interact with people you tend to meet with cursory glances, and explore new places. Gravitate toward what frightens you (within reason) and force yourself to embrace it in order to learn and grow. Maybe this involves making a commitment you’ve been hesitating about or finally trying public speaking.
Challenge yourself to be keenly aware of all the blessings you have in life. This will allow you to appreciate what others don’t have and be more grateful for what you do have. Instead of taking each day for granted, be aware of the beauty of it. Accept that you cannot be in control of everything and embrace new experiences openly. Rather than give up on uncomfortable or challenging changes, force yourself to work through them until you achieve a level of comfort or familiarity. Switch up the ways you interact with people in order to expand the range of people you talk to and ask questions that demand more than recycled responses. You might just discover more about yourself and the world around you.