10 brain hacks for superpowers

10 brain hacks for superpowers

by Ashley Tan 26 Feb 2020

Leading a successful and happy life is undoubtedly a challenging process. While many of us have personal practices that help make the journey a smoother one, it’s common to miss out on small but impactful tips and tricks. Here are 10 brain hacks to help you lead your life like a true superhero!


1. Listen to music to get stronger

Many of us enjoy listening to music when we workout – not only does it help us relax, but it also seems to reduce the amount of pain that we are made to endure, thereby enhancing our performance. While music helps take our attention away from the ache in our legs or the strain in our biceps, it also provides a steady tempo that helps with synchronicity, making it easier for us to keep to a specific beat instead of speeding up or slowing down unnecessarily.


2. Get smarter while you’re sleeping

Research has found that burning the midnight oil for a test paper will not help you maximise the amount of information you’re able to remember. In fact, you should endeavour to study at least 24 hours before the paper, and then sleep on it. While you’re taking your siesta, your brain processes the information that it otherwise couldn’t have been able to during the day. This helps you retain information more effectively and, consequently, enables you to ace your exams!


3. Wear red to win

Wearing red can make you look more attractive to the opposite sex, but it can also help increase your chances of winning at competitive sports! Two British researchers analysed results from the 2004 Olympics Games and found that the sportsperson or team which donned red outfits were more likely to win in close matches, no matter the sport. The researches hypothesised that wearing red improves one’s chances of winning during sports events because of the simple reason that red often equates to dominance.


4. Allow people to work according to their natural clocks

As most of us would know, everyone has different body clocks, which means that there are different periods of the day when each of us are more productive. If you’re an employer, instead of getting your employees to perform intensive tasks at a specific time, try to provide more leeway by allowing them to carry out these activities when they’ve hit their personal peak hours.


5. Listen to music to recover lost memories

According to medical practitioners, listening to music may help to recover lost memories, even for those in the late stages of dementia. When we listen to music, the hippocampus, which is the region of the brain that is related to long-term memory storage, is engaged. Emotions associated with the particular song that you are listening to are evoked, and thus help to unearth memories which would otherwise have been lost.


6. Use a specific location to remember lists

Many of us already feel that we are less than adept at remembering small things, let alone long lists. Be it grocery shopping lists, homework lists, or miscellaneous to-do lists; the list goes on. In order to overcome this weakness, you should try to associate long lists with specific places. For instance, if you’re familiar with the layout of your vicinity, then picture yourself walking along a trail of your choice. After this, mentally visualise and associate each item on your list with a specific location for better memory. Who said that imagination doesn’t come into play during memorisation?


7. Chew gum to concentrate

Have you ever been told that chewing on gum is an irritating distraction? Well, gum aficionados would be happy to hear that chewing on gum can actually help you handle stress and distraction. The science behind it lies in the fact that the act of mastication helps to jump-start your brain for at least 20 minutes, and enables you to concentrate better.


8. Write things down to remember them

In this digital age, penning things down on paper can seem like a rather archaic way of recording things. However, writing things down by hand can actually help you retain information more easily. The act of writing engages neural activity, and helps your brain remember pertinent information better, compared to typing it on a computer.


9. Look at pictures to boost your immune system

At first glance, this tactic seems rather dubious. However, research has revealed that looking at pictures of disease can actually improve your immunity system. Scientists from the University of British Columbia showed a 10-minute slideshow of sick people to a group of students, before measuring the responses of their immune systems. They found that after the slideshow, participants’ white blood cells began to produce greater amounts of interleukin-6 (IL-6), a protein which your body produces to fight infections or burns. So, if you’re looking for alternatives to anti-oxidant vitamins to boost your immune system, then looking at pictures of diseases and illnesses may actually help!


10. Listen to music to boost your immune system

Aside from looking at bilious pictures, neuroscientists have also found that listening to music can help boost your immune system. Other than reducing stress levels, music also raises immune markers in your body, which helps create more antibodies to combat diseases. Who knew how much power music really holds!


With these seemingly strange but effective brain hacks, you’ll be able to gain mastery over various parts of your life. After all, not every superhero wears a cape!