6 Hacks to Boost Your Creativity & Brainpower

Improve your performance (at work and beyond) with these quick and painless steps.

June 2, 2017
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Adapted from Peak Performance

Whether it is a stressful day at the office or a problem at home that needs your extra attention, taking a break from the stresses of daily life can often reboot your brain and leave you with with a brand new outlook. 

More: 10 Warning Signs of Burnout & Excessive Stress

Consider these tips from our book, Peak Performance, to increase your creativity and brainpower in just a few short steps. All you need is a time out. 

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1. Take a break

Have the courage to take breaks throughout the day, especially when you are stuck or feeling unbearable stress; the more intense the work, the more frequent the breaks. 

More: 3 Workday Break Myths, Busted

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2. Go on a walk

Take a walk lasting at least 6 minutes to increase creativity and decrease the ill effects of sitting (and enjoy these other benefits of talking a daily walking break). If you can, walk outdoors, but even taking a few laps around the office provides big benefits.

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3. Put yourself in the way of beauty

Being in nature, or even just looking at pictures of nature, helps with the transition from stress to rest and promotes creative thinking.

More: 7 Ways to Harmonize With Nature

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4. Meditate

Begin with a few mindful breaths, focusing only on the breath (try this belly breathing exercise for beginners). Then, consider shifting to open-monitoring meditation, scanning your body and shifting your awareness to all of its sensations.

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5. Indulge in a nap

When we take short naps, the part of our brain that is always on when we are awake has the opportunity to take a break. Even if you don't actually experience the sensation of falling asleep, simply closing your eyes can help switch your active brain off, allowing it to recover. Keep your naps to less than 30 minutes to avoid the groggy feeling later. 

More: In Favor of the Power Nap: Why You Should Take a Midday Snooze

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6. Hang out with friends!

At the end of hard work—be it with your body or your mind—surrounding yourself with friends in a laid-back environment fundamentally alters your biology from stress to rest.

Find more tips for creating your own success in Peak Performance, and learn how to enhance your performance by optimally alternating between periods of intense work and rest; prime your body and mind for enhanced productivity; and develop and harness the power of a self-transcending purpose.

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