Dumb and Grumpy: The Effects of Sleep Deprivation

This blog often discusses cognitive enhancers, such as mental mojo, but one of the single most devastating cognitive detractors is sleep deprivation. Increasingly, neuroscientific studies are showing that sleep deprivation is cognitive kryptonite. For starters, it blunts the brain's ability to be positive. According to findings of two related studies published in the Journal of Psychosomatic Research, less sleep makes the brain more sensitive to negative stimuli, and less sensitive to positive ones. This is why, as many new parents will…

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The Five Best Brain-Boosting Rituals

Your brain is your engine of success. Research suggests that adopting the five following rituals will keep it finely tuned into your golden years. Savor the little victories: your brain doesn't know the difference between little ones and big ones, but perceived progress is an enormous driver of positive behaviors and neurochemistry. Consider a morning routine that ends with an accomplishment (working out, writing a blog entry, etc.) to get your victory in the bag at the…

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Brain Boosting Beats: Rhythm’s Effect on Focus

Since ancient times, drums have been the centerpiece of some of humanity's most important moments.  The rhythm of drums spirited soldiers into battle and elevated souls into alternative realities during religious ceremonies. Neuroscience is now revealing what humanity has innately appreciated all along: rhythm moves us--all the way down to our brain waves. Specifically, electroencephalographs (EEGs), which measure the electrical impulses in the brain, have revealed that drums stimulate the brain, causing its brainwaves to resonate in time with their rhythm…

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Machines That Read Your Mind: The New Focus on Neurotech

Innovators in the neurotech industry will soon be able to use technology to read your mind: the proof is in the patents.  Indeed, patents in neurotechnology have skyrocketed from 300 a year in the 2000s to over 1,600 last year.  The most fascinating of those patents describe technologies that detect your emotional state and play appropriate music (e.g. Mozart when you are concentrating on something), read your brainwaves to determine what you truly think about a product…

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Tech Use Up, Memory Capacity Down: Techniques to Counteract it

Remember the days before smart phones where we actually memorized dozens of phone numbers? We don't really do that anymore, and it could be directly linked to why more of us are routinely forgetting where we put our keys or where we parked our car. Science shows us that technological conveniences like smart phones and GPS are making our memories worse. However, you can improve your memory with techniques as simple as doodling. Read on for more…

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Become a Memory Grand Master

Ever struggle with names?  In this Wednesday Wisdom, renowned science journalist Joshua Foer discusses how mental athletes train their memories to perform unbelievable feats of memory: memorizing poems in a minute, shuffled packs of cards in two minutes and 1000 random digits in an hour.  The bottom line: it comes down to training, not talent.  Check out the video here.

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The Billionaire’s Business Bible–In One Chart

"All warfare is based on deception." Sound familiar? Those are the words of Sun Tzu from "The Art of War," the single most important book on strategy and tactics ever written.  While Tzu's timeless principles focus on warfare, many of the world's most successful leaders were quick to draw the parallels between the battlefield and the boardroom, hence why this prophetic tome is the single most common occupant of the bookshelves of powerful people.  Now, thanks to Mindjet, you can absorb…

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The Nocebo Effect: How to Trick Yourself Into Dying

The mind is powerful: it can build and destroy anything, including itself. The well-known placebo effect is a manifestation of its ability to build while the lesser known nocebo effect is a manifestation of its ability to destroy.  Example: a young man signed up for clinical tests of an experimental drug.  He was unknowingly selected for the control group, which received sugar pills.  Later, in a fit of depression, he swallowed the entire bottle of sugar pills intending to kill himself.  Although the…

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