GIVE YOUR BRAIN A REST! By Magdalena Bak-Maier

1. Periodically practice closing your eyes as visual stimulation such as Twitter, Facebook or TV is a major energy drain on the brain
Visual cortex, the part of your brain devoted to processing visual stimuli is the largest chunk of brain real estate. As long as the eyes are open, information bombardment is constant. This puts a massive strain on the brain.
2. Switch between different activities as prolonged multitasking and intense focus stress the brain
Thinking engages specific brains cells certain cell to fire together. Prolonged and intense thinking makes more and more cells join in but excited cells can at times have a difficult time switching off. The longer you work, the more the brain heats up with activity. Without a break to stop some cells from being β€˜on’, other cells can’t get effectively engaged.
3. Become a regular 7-8hours sleeper as lack of sleep prevents the mind from creating order and logic
Imagine the mind as if it was a giant world library of ideas, reflections, inspiration and information. To be efficient, it requires a cataloguing system so that what’s needed can be found quickly. During sleep, the brain creates order by processing and integrating memories and experiences so it can produce meaning and continuity. Insufficient sleep disrupts this healthy process creating havoc.
4. Arrange your work and hope area to soothe your brain as physical environments affect brain function
Brains draw information from all sorts of cues and two of them are auditory, olfactory and kinesthetic information in addition to visual information. Certain sounds and environments stimulate a feeling of safety in which the brain can perform and focus better and others can create anxiety and extra stress or distraction.
5. Rediscover the art of heart led letter writing or journaling as emptying thoughts and feelings helps the brain order thoughts
Brains carry massive amounts of information about the state of the body, different experiences, memories from a whole lifetime, different emotions and feelings, beliefs and experiences as well as simulated experiences the mind can create from all the information it contains. This resembles a massive jungle that at times needs a machete to clear new paths. Writing is one of the most effective processes for emptying and processing information especially when performed in free flow without censoring oneself. In this process the mind can work its magic, make important associations or simply heal itself.
6. Draw to recover clarity
Given the massive amount of information and intensity of work and focus today’s lives demand of the brain, many thoughts and up lost or displaced and the overall logic and sense that thinking should create is at times severely compromised. Drawing help the brain process, order and evaluate its own thinking by giving it an external parking space. Once the idea is captured and represented, the mind can begin to see it anew, evaluate it, test it and improve it.
7. Track progress with tools to relieve unnecessary brain power
The brain is a natural synthesizer of information and meaning. To do this, the brain is in effect always on. But some of the work and energy needed to keep on top of progress, to-do lists, important birthdays, or series of phone numbers is tiring and takes unnecessary energy. Often mental overwhelm happens from apparent chaos of thoughts. Using tools and frameworks based on conscious awareness of facts helps the brain function at its best.
8. Get Joggy or Get Jiggy with physical exercise or bedroom activity to help the brain heal
One of the reasons why yoga is so relaxing for the brain is that most balancing poses require such high level of focus, all other thought activity in effect goes on pause. This is very restful to the brain as it stops the massive storm of thoughts that flood through it. Exercise and sex both achieve something similar in creating a state in which the brain switches off. In addition the extra hormones that bathe the brain cells afterwards help recover them.
9. Drink an espresso to keep your brain cells primed for action
Several studies have already shown that regular and moderate intake of caffeine supports memory retention in older people, and reduces the rate of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Caffeine creates brain cell activation in parts of the prefrontal lobe involved in attention, concentration, planning and monitoring. In other words, a small dose of caffeine primes cells and massive intake of it exhausts them.
10. Talk it out to heal realign inner conflicts that dampen and limit full brain function.
Most people have within them different voices. Two that I work with most are the logic driven rational voice and the heart driven emotional or intuitive voice. Often these two want different things and seem to tear the person in two. This is most tiring for the brain as emotional and rational circuits fire and produce different patterns. Without a way to find a blend between these two aspects of our mind, people often feel drained, exhausted and at war with their own mind. Talking things out with a trained professional to realign them helps the mind rest and rebalance the individual.
To find out more about Magdalena Bak-Maier visit her website: http://www.maketimecount.com/

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