Get Physical

Creativity and intelligence aren’t just in the brain. Your physical body plays a large role in your ability to think clearly, solve problems, and find innovative strategies. The Height Media website offers these tips for strengthening your body to enhance your mind:

Practice paced breathing. Steady, healthy breathing releases chemicals that can help you stay calm during stressful situations. Spend 10 minutes a day breathing deeply from your diaphragm; in through the nose and out through your mouth. The in and out counts can be different. One study found that after 21 days of paced breathing, a group of bankers achieved an average of 62% improvement in cognitive capacity on complex decision-making tasks.

Sit and stand straight. Hunching over for hours on end reduces the space your lungs need to expand adequately, increasing carbon dioxide levels and reducing your emotional and mental performance. Sit and/or stand with your feet flat on the ground, straighten your spine as if you had a string attached from the ceiling to the top of your head, and square your shoulders. Check your posture during the day.

Walk throughout the day. Sitting too much increases your risk of cancer by 13%, according to studies, and also raises your mortality risk by 17%. However, you’re 45% more likely to have a creative idea while you’re walking than when you’re seated, even if you’re walking on a treadmill. If you’re blocked for ideas, a walk can be a quick, easy way to unleash your imagination.

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