Written by Gustavo Oliveira (www.brainhackers.com)
For the past 12 years, I have been teaching top-level executives, entrepreneurs, and elite athletes on ways they can enhance their professional performance while improving their quality of life. One of the most critical components needed to improve your professional performance starts with the ability to improve your mental performance.
The methods I use to improve mental performance derives from the DeRose Method. The DeRose Method incorporates over 2,000 techniques, so I’ve summarized seven hacks that you can start applying right now in order to begin enhancing your mental performance. To further validate the results that can be achieved by using the DeRose Method, I’d like point to a recent study conducted by the neuroscientist Dr. Renata Coura from Paris, France. Dr. Coura states that “altogether, the set of techniques and behavioral training of the Method have a strong impact on the functioning and also in the structure of the practitioner’s brain and body. This translates into general well-being, emotional self-sufficiency, awareness-raising and high-performance mental skills.” She continues “imaging studies show that poor diet, lack of physical activity and sleep, and having counterproductive thoughts, reduce the level of brain activity and hamper its functioning.”
Below are my 7 hacks for enhancing your mental performance.
Learn to cultivate good relationships. This habit eliminates a lot of emotional issues and will help you focus energy and mental strength on more productive activities. Maintaining good relations can also provide you with a healthy support system.
Good nutrition: Vegetables and fruits generally are richer in terms of energy and nutrients. So, a diet full of them will definitely improve brain functions.
Learn to breathe properly: A study started in 1991 by Jack Feldman, professor of neurology at UCLA, showed that breathing affects the mind and its emotional states. They found a neural circuit that causes us to be anxious when we are breathing rapidly and focused when we are breathing slowly.
Develop a comprehensive meditation approach: The DeRose Method combines meditation with breathing exercises, internal cleansing techniques, body techniques, relaxation, and mentalization. This approach brings a powerful focus, awareness and mental concentration ability.
Maintain a positive attitude: Train your mind to see the positive angle of any situation. Whenever an adverse situation occurs, train yourself to take advantage of it somehow, rather than whining.
Physical activity and sleep: Within the Method, there are body and stress management techniques which will improve physical condition, the quality of your sleep, and consequently enhance brain activity.
Emotional management: A common way of dealing with our emotional aspect is through control. And control means repression of our emotions. This works for a while, but only for a while. The emotional impulse does not disappear, and eventually that repressed energy sooner or later will explode or implode, bringing unwanted consequences. The solution is to channel the emotional energy into something positive through behavior training.