9 Ways to Trick Your Brain into Working – Ink+Volt

What to Do When Your Anger Is Out of Control

March 29, 2022

Polls suggest people are getting angrier. But there are good ways to tone it down—for the sake of ourselves and others.

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2. The blame game

How often have you found yourself guilty of playing the blame game? Can you recall these lines: 

The test was so hard. All the questions were out of syllabus. 

The meeting room was so dull; I could not give a great presentation. 

We have a natural tendency to look for an underlying cause to blame when something bad occurs. We habitually blame the external forces and alter the reality in our minds to protect our image and pride. 

Interestingly, if you deliver a bad presentation in the meeting, you blame the room; but if your colleague does the same, then you are likely to believe that he/she was not prepared enough. This habit is known as fundamental attribution error.

Your Thinking Is Swayed by Hidden Biases

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These are predispositions that can influence how you perceive people (such as the halo effect), how you perceive events (the hindsight bias), and what aspects of a situation you pay attention to when making a decision (the attributional bias).

Another is the confirmation bias, which can lead you to place greater emphasis or even seek out things that confirm what you already believe while at the same time ignoring or discounting anything that opposes your existing ideas.

Such cognitive biases can prevent you from thinking clearly and making accurate decisions—about your finances, your health, and even the ways in which you interact in the world.

3. Do it NOW. Conquer procrastination by using rituals

If procrastination is a challenge, build a “do it NOW” habit by developing rituals. Rituals conquer inertia, and your moods will no longer control you.

Here’s an easy ritual to develop a healthy exercise habit. Schedule exercise at a specific time each day. When that time arrives, change into your exercise gear immediately, without thinking about it.

My writing ritual each day is to make a cup of coffee, and take it into my office. I’ve done this for so long, that when I walk into my office with my coffee, I’m in the mood to write.

Ensure that your ritual is a physical activity. Thinking about what you need to do leads to procrastination; be active.

5. Practice gratitude so that your brain floods with norepinephrine, and you feel good

What are you grateful for? Make a list of three things. Everyone has three things they love, and for which they feel grateful.

From an article by Rick Hanson, who’s a psychologist and best-selling author:

“Research suggests that when people practice gratitude, they experience a general alerting and brightening of the mind, and that’s probably correlated with more of the neurotransmitter norepinephrine.”

6. Keep a diary or journal

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If it’s good enough for the likes of Einstein, Isaac Newton, and Thomas Jefferson, keeping a diary might be a good idea for all of us. Getting into the habit of constantly taking notes or writing down things or ideas effectively creates an extension of your mind. 

Thoughts are fickle, ethereal things at times and unless jotted down they can be lost for good. By routinely recording your thoughts, you will enable yourself to think more clearly and thoroughly.

Good behaviors like this will boost your ability to think with clarity. Who knows one of those random. normally discarded, thoughts, could be your path to freedom and fortune?

Just world hypothesis

Your preference for a just world makes you presume that it is.

We tend to believe that hard work always pays off, or that people – good or bad – always get what they deserve in life, but this is far from the truth.

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The ways our brains trick us are also known as cognitive biases, which are often the result of our brains trying to simplify the world around usCredit: Getty – Contributor

Groupthink

You allow the first or most confident voice in a group to make all of the decisions.

This is because challenging the dynamic of a collection of people can be intimidating.

3. Read, read, read!

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This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, but don’t underestimate the power of reading. Reading exposes you to new ideas and can influence and improve your mind. Being well-read not only improves your vocabulary but will also make you more articulate. 

It is one of the best brain exercises going. 

Reading also improves your general knowledge, making you more capable of holding interesting conversations and relating different concepts. Reading expands your communication skills and develops your analytical skills and also exposes you to new ideas, and allows you to learn new skills.

It is rumored that highly successful people, like CEOs, read, on average, one book a week. While this might not be possible for you, you really should carve out time to read for at least an hour a day. 

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The best bit is you don’t need to stick to dry scientific tomes. Works of fiction, like Lord of the Rings or Moby Dick, will also do the trick. Of course, you can dive into some heavy philosophy texts if you really want to turbocharge your brain. 

Survival Mode

When your amygdala is activated, you are in a survival mode commonly known as a fight-or-flight state where your mind and body are entirely consumed with the priority of surviving.

This state is actually not just activated only when you’re in a life-threatening situation, but is also activated by stress. So when you are on the verge of having a mental breakdown because of all the drama happening in your life, your brain is trying to protect you by putting you in survival mode.

But there’s one big problem with this.

When you are in survival mode, you are not in thinking mode.

There’s is a part of your brain called the pre-frontal cortex that is involved with important skills such as critical thinking, decision making and organization.

When you enter survival mode, your pre-frontal cortex is temporarily shut down.

So when you have a lot of problems to take care of and you’re overwhelmed with stress, your brain actually shuts down the very thing you need to figure out how to best solve those problems.

In order to make our brains stop utilizing counterintuitive methods to help us, there are a couple of simple things we can start doing right now to break free from being stuck and creating the results we want to see in our lives.

Warnings

  • Avoid soda and energy drinks if you’re looking for a quick fix. The carbonation can make your stomach feel bloated, which will lead to lethargy. The high sugar content will also cause you to crash harder than you normally would with a little caffeine. Sugary drinks are also bad for your health.[26]

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4. Your brain misses out on obvious things

In today’s world, our mind is already grasping so many much information that it fails to notice visible changes happening in front of you; referred to as change blindness.

A great example is this interesting experiment: 

Your Brain Can Be Blind to Change

Besim Mazhiqi / Getty Images

There’s so much going on in the world at any given moment it can be hard for the brain to take in every detail. As a result, it’s sometimes tough to completely miss major changes that happen right in front of our eyes. This is called change blindness. In studies, when conversational partners were swapped during a brief interruption, the majority of people didn’t even notice the change.

Researchers think a few things may be going on when this kind of thing happens. If you're busy concentrating on one thing, you simply have to tune out huge amounts of other information that your brain cannot deal with at that time.

Expectations also can play an important role. Would you expect a person to suddenly transform into somebody else while you were talking to them? Of course not—so it's not so surprising you might miss a major shift in your situation or environment. 

Take Massive Imperfect Action

The fear of failure and rejection is such a strong motivation to not do something, but action is the only way to create real results in your life.

Imperfect action is better than perfect inaction

— Harry Truman

The reason why many of us don’t take action when it matters most is simply because we don’t feel like it.

We rely on the motivation and inspiration to help us achieve our goals, but the truth is it doesn’t work.

Consistently taking massive imperfect action is the only way that can spark growth and produce results in your life because while you may have a desire to achieve all of your big goals, you will never feel like it.

I’m pretty sure the top bodybuilders don’t feel like engaging in a heavily aggressive and long workout session everyday.

The best writers don’t feel like waking up at 5 A.M. to write for three hours every morning.

The best entrepreneurs don’t feel like doing all the tireless work to ensure their business succeed.

The moment you start focusing on yourself and what can go wrong instead of what’s needed to help you grow, you’ve already lost because now you’re not taking action.

Think about the person who dreamed of becoming an actor for the past 10 years but never signed up for an acting class because he was afraid he wouldn’t be good enough.

What dream are you not acting on because you spend more time worrying about it rather than working to make it a reality?

When you are about to move towards something that will help you grow and transform for the better, your brain is going to resist.

Because it doesn’t know what will happen yet or what results this action will bring for you, it will activate you fears and worries to try and protect you from getting hurt.

This is where all those “what if” questions come from.

These are all valid questions, but the problem is these questions alway 100% keep you stuck where you are.

So the next time you want to do something big, remind yourself, this isn’t about inflating or hurting your ego. It’s more about the experiences you need to go through in order to grow.

It will always be out of your comfort zone. It will hurt. It will be hard.

This is just a simple fact we will all have to accept.

It’s easy to dream about the fame and riches, but it’s painful to do the work to get it.

So dream big and change the world.

I believe every individual has a unique set of passions and talents that can help fulfill an important need that exists in the world. Unfortunately, for most people these talents and passions are buried beneath all the stress and hard work involved in getting by with daily life.

If you’re tired of living a life that feels like you’re drifting further away from where you want to be, you can download my free workbook, “What’s Next? Four Insanely Important Steps to Finding Your Unique Calling”, for some practical things you can immediately start doing today to find the clarity you need to find your place in the world.

Cheers to keeping life beautiful.

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