Posted on Leave a comment

How to Boost your Emotional Intelligence

How to Boost Your Emotional IntelligenceReading Time: 4 minutes

Did you know that there’s another intelligence to us that we don’t explore much? That’s right, we are talking about Emotional intelligence and it is a very important component of our personality. In this post, we will discuss how to boost your emotional intelligence. Read on.

 

Emotional intelligence is an important component of our overall personality. It can be defined as the ability to understand and manage and express effectively one’s own feelings. EQ or EI also helps us navigate emotions in daily conversations and activities.

It is absolutely essential in the development, formation, and maintenance of relationships and interpersonal connections. And unlike IQ, which is believed to be static over the course of our lives, our EQ actually evolves and increases as our desire to learn to grow.

In this post, we will talk about certain ways to boost your emotional intelligence so that you can have meaningful conversations and make strong bonds in your daily lives.

 

Managing Negative Emotions

We all get sometimes negative emotions – depending on the circumstances that surround us. And sometimes these emotions can overwhelm us beyond despair. In order to navigate and manage these feelings, we need to change the way we think about them.

  1. Reducing Negative Personalisation – The first way you can do that is try avoiding jumping to negative conclusions. For instance, if someone is not replying or behaving in a weird way – do not think straight away it has something to do with you or something bad has happened. Instead, look at that situation from multiple points of views before reacting.
  2. Managing the Fear of Rejection – One of the difficult negative emotion that always engulfs it the fear of rejection or failure. Navigating this is often tricky and the fear itself – and not the actual rejection or failure – can bring you down.

 

The best way to navigate these feelings is to think and working towards strong alternatives and having multiple options. This helps because no matter what happens you will have options nonetheless. As they say, you should never put your eggs in one basket.

Managing Stressful Situations

Our daily lives have become hotbeds of stress and anxiety. It is important for us to know how to handle such situations. When under pressure or extreme stress, the most important thing you can do it keep calm and keep your cool.

If in case, the stress getting too overwhelming then you can do certain things to calm yourself down: 1. Put cold water on your face and get some fresh air; 2. Try avoiding caffeinated beverages; 3. You should also try doing aerobic exercises which will help you feel energetic.

 

Being Assertive and Expressive

There are times when we want to set boundaries or be outright about our emotions so that the other person does not take undue advantage. That is what being emotionally assertive means. This could mean by practicing our right to disagree or saying “NO” without feeling guilty about it.

It is all about setting the right priorities and able to express how we feel. This also means effective means of communication with the people around you. Better communication and effective expression of emotions often lead to a congenial environment.

 

Being Proactive and not Reactive

We all face sometimes unreasonable people in our lives. Be in the workplace or someone in your class and it can be challenging as that person can severely affect your mood.

If you are in such situations and feeling aggravated and feel that you may be about to burst open, you can do certain things remain calm. 1. Take a deep breath and try counting backward to ten. Usually, you will calm down and you will not react to the other person. 2. Another way is that you can try putting yourself in the other person’s shoes. Even though that does not excuse unacceptable behavior, but still the idea is to remind yourself that people may be acting because of certain personal situations themselves.

 

Bouncing Back from Adversity

We all know that life often gets tough and we have to face tough situations, often setbacks. But it will depend on how we think and feel and act towards’ life’s constant challenges. The way we think and feel in such situations can be a difference between optimism and pessimism.

In order to escape unscathed from these challenges is to keep asking yourself questions – how to learn from this experience or what can be done now. The more insightful questions you can ask at these situations – the more you will optimistic about the future.

 

Practicing Empathy

Most of us, when we hear the sad news about someone else, feel pity or sympathetic towards them. However helpful, that is not what desired but being empathetic is the key towards building strong interpersonal relationships.

Practicing empathy means trying to feel what the other person is feeling and then helping them get through it. This not only helps in building a strong relationship but also strengthens your ability to understand people more effectively.

 

To Conclude

Emotional intelligence has the ability to evolve over time. It is up to you as you need to have the desire and will to keep improving. Improving EQ is very helpful and by these techniques, you can easily increase your EQ and be a stronger and better person.

So, what are you waiting for, start using these techniques and be a better version of yourself? Till then cheers and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits!

 

Posted on Leave a comment

How to Keep Yourself Motivated

Keep Yourself MotivatedReading Time: 3 minutes

In today’s fast-paced world, it is very easy to get demotivated. Be it with your work, be it with normal daily activities as it can get soul-draining. In this post, we will talk about certain tricks to keep your motivation levels high. Read on.

 

There are times when all of us feel drained by the daily humdrum of our lives. We start to feel less motivated towards our day to day activities. How to retain your motivation levels? How to improve your motivation levels?

This post will talk about certain easy tips to help retain your motivation levels. It is necessary because, higher levels of motivation will make you feel good about yourself and whatever, work your doing.

How to Keep Yourself Motivated

 

 

Break Your Work into Smaller Pieces

 

via GIPHY

Making small goals of your whole work will surely help you to keep motivated for the bigger picture that you have in your mind. By making smaller goals and milestones and at the end of the day or week or month will surely be going to give you a sense of achievement and keep you motivated for the next small piece of your journey.

 

Keeping Track of Your Achievements

 

via GIPHY

Keeping track that what have you achieved till yet will surely keep you up to. By knowing that you can easily dodge the balls of underestimating and overestimating yourself. The dodging of these demons will provide you with real pictures of your capabilities and what you can achieve will surely give you an edge over your competitors.

The boosted confidence and self-esteem, in the end, keep you motivated and keep you in the game kicking and alive. They also keep you focused and make you feel good about yourself.

 

Meet Like-Minded People

 

via GIPHY

Hanging around with a peer group and community with the same perspectives will surely help you a lot. In psychology behavior, modeling plays a big role in human life, by this I mean, a technique which a person uses to learn behavior.

So, if you are around the like-minded peers and they also are interested in habits which are similar to you then it also helps your motivation levels.

 

Keep Hustling for Your Goals

 

via GIPHY

Hustle, hustle, hustle! The mere truth is no one can really replace your hard work and dedication. So, keep hustling for your dream is a non-replacement tool from your life. By this, you can stay motivated and achieve your goals without any interference of excuses.

Because excuses and laziness are two of the biggest walls in front of you and your goals. So only hustling will help you to eradicate it. Eradication of laziness and excuses will surely keep you motivated.

 

Staying Organised and Focused

 

via GIPHY

Having a good routine, maintaining it and sticking to it will help you to stay organized and focused. By doing this, you can throw away a lot of distractions. When you have easy access to distractions all around you then it becomes hard to focus.

And as soon you lose your focus, you will also lose your vision too. So, it is better to stick to a routine and keeping track of your progress.

 

Listening to Speeches and Stories

 

via GIPHY

You can find numerous stories, speeches, blogs etc on the internet which will certainly help you regain your motivation levels. Listen to Ted Talks, read biographies and watch documentaries of famous personalities and entrepreneurs as their stories are a great motivation to everyone.

The stories of their fight under pessimistic situations and how they stood up against all odds will surely motivate you and wake you up before the bell of alarm.

 

Move Your Body and Stay Fit

 

via GIPHY

A healthy mind stays in a healthy body. This is not just a saying but it is widely applicable, trust me. Getting sick or poor functioning of your body will surely take away your motivation.

So, to stay fit hit the gym, go on small walks, run at an easy pace or do other exercises. I find that just 20-30 minutes of lifting free weights releases inner tensions and stress and makes me feel more focused once again.

 

Time Management

 

via GIPHY

A unique time management technique is called the 4 quadrant technique. It will be used for managing your time. It will surely help you to manage your time and also work as a screening where you are losing your time.

In this technique, you have to make four quadrants and designate it into four categories

  • Most productive
  • Average
  • Least
  • Wasted time.

This screening of time will help you to reduce your time wastage a result of which you can fetch better results by Providing an ample amount of time to your project and achieve goals.

 

To Conclude

 

So, there you have it, some very easy to do tips to keep your motivation levels high. By following these tips, I’m sure you will find a change in your lifestyle and your motivation levels. Till then cheers and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits.

Posted on Leave a comment

The Do’s and Don’ts of An Interview

dos and donts of an interviewReading Time: 5 minutes

Do you have a job interview coming up? Are you feeling anxious how to improve from last experience? Or do you just want to know the essential tips for an interview? Then this post will help you. Read on.

 

We all get anxious when it comes to facing an interview panel for a job or for a scholarship. But it is one of the most important hurdles that we all have to face to get that job or that scholarship.

In this post, we will talk about how to ace the personal interview. I am going to talk about certain key ‘do’s and don’ts of an interview. If you follow them then I am sure you will ace the next interview you have.

 

The Do’s and Don’ts of An Interview

 

The Essential Do’s for an Interview

First, let’s talk about the essential things that you should do for the interview.

 

Projection of Confidence

The first and foremost is the projection of confidence through non-verbal measures. This means positive hand gestures while you speak, having a smile on your face as you face the interview panel and no fidgety movements of the feet or the hands.

The purpose of this that any fidgety movements are a sign of under-confidence and nervousness, which the interviewers will quickly pick up and can harm your chances.

 

A Proper Dress

formal dress

How to dress for the interview? These days many get confused on what dress to wear before the interview. Due to the rise of casual attire in the workplace, many feel comfortable coming in casuals to the interview.

But it is recommended that dress according to the job profile. If it is a high-ranking profile, then go for conservative, that is suit-up! As that would mean you’re serious for the job. If the interview is for a scholarship, then dress up formally.

If in certain circumstances, the workplace is known for liberal culture, then you can think of wearing something casual but not too casual. Remember, a good first impression can go a long way in an interview.

 

Use Appropriate Language

Whenever you are asked a question in the interview, do not use negative or inappropriate language. Rather focus on the right way to answer the questions. For example, if you don’t know how to answer a particular question then say I will look at that particular issue and get back to you. That will show your interest in an issue that you didn’t know about.

Apart from that, be respectful and cordial during your answers. Even if things may be getting a bit hostile in there keep your calm and answers in a calm manner.

 

Answering Questions Carefully

While answering questions, take your time. When you hear a question take a few seconds to process what exactly has been asked and then respond carefully. As each word matters in an interview.

Don’t jump to answering questions as that is a sign of impatience. So, just stay calm, listen to a question carefully and then answer carefully.

 

Practicing Expected Questions

practice makes perfect

While you may not know what are the exact questions will come in the whole interview. But there are some questions that are asked in almost all interviews. For example, ‘Tell us about yourself’, or ‘Why this company?’ or ‘why should we choose you?’.

These are some of the examples of expected questions that come in interviews. You must prepare them beforehand. By preparing I mean make bullet points and rehearse in front of your friends in order to get feedback.

 

Be Flexible

Suppose if you are asked about a sensitive question asking about your interview on it. Now, this is a tricky situation to be in and its intentionally used by the interviewee to test you. The best way is to give a flexible answer by giving both sides of the issue.

For example, if you were asked about your opinion on the issue say me too movement, you should try to give arguments for and against. This would show that you are aware of both sides of the issue.

 

The Essential DON’TS of an Interview

Now, that we have learned about some essential do’s, lets’ focus on things you should not do in an interview.

 

Don’t Talk Too Much or Try to Dominate

Earlier, we mentioned to talk carefully and use appropriate language. Now, you don’t want to overdo it as well. Do not talk too much and give long answers where the panel may get bored or lose interest.

The idea is to balance the answers and speak for the right amount of time. Ideally, you should not stretch beyond a minute while giving answers as you don’t want to turn it into a monologue.

 

Don’t be Too Familiar

Another thing you should avoid is to try to behave too friendly. Don’t go in shaking hands with the panel and being all chummy. Remember, this is a professional interview and your future or your scholarship depends on it, so keep it casual.

 

Don’t be Overconfident

Its good to be confident but you shouldn’t be overconfident. As that would give the impression that you are taking the interview way too lax and feel that you are already qualified. So be confident but not too confident.

 

Don’t Freeze Up

dont freeze

Also, don’t get too nervous and freeze up and become a zombie in front of the panel. It can happen, I know it from personal experience. So, if you feel that you are about to get a freeze attack then take a deep breath and relax and take a sip of water and begin again.

 

Don’t Bad Mouth Ex-Employers

In case if your shifting from one firm to another, then do not at all cost bad mouth your previous firm or your ex-employer. It comes as very negative and rude and can harm your prospects in the interview.

If it is asked that what happened in the previous workplace, give a simple and diplomatic answer. For example, just say ‘the company’s vision didn’t’ match yours’ or something on those lines.

 

To Conclude

Well, the next time you go for an interview, be sure to keep these essential tips in mind and try to do your best! Till then, cheers and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits!

Posted on Leave a comment

5 Hormones That Affect Your Mood

5 hormones affect your moodReading Time: 3 minutes

Hormones can simply be understood as messengers which are directly excreted into your bloodstream. They regulate your bodily functions, example, when you feel hungry or when you feel sleepy.

 

A hormonal imbalance produces wide-ranging effects from making you moods swings to bodily changes like gaining weight to hypertension/stress.

Hence, the article focuses on providing with information on hormones affecting your mood and how you can help yourself regulate them better.

 

Below are 5 prominent hormones that have an impact on your mood and behavior

 

5 Hormones That Affect Your Mood

 

 

  • Dopamine

This hormone in simple terms makes you more attentive and work oriented. It helps in learning or working as part of reward center by giving you pleasure after completing a task.

 

So, whenever you completed an assignment or task the happy feeling that you get is dopamine acting.

 

Another most important aspect is that it helps your motivation levels (which is affected by dopamine). High dopamine produces higher motivation whereas low dopamine makes you feel low on energy levels.

 

Foods like cocoa, alcohol, chocolates, milk, cheese, bananas, almonds, beans and others help with increasing dopamine levels.

 

ocytocin

This is popularly called love hormone. Besides helping in reproductive and sexual health, oxytocin influences social interactions.

 

It is released through touch and intimacy with loved ones. Being in a relationship helps release oxytocin. The people who are reclusive or prefer not to interact have displayed low oxytocin levels.

 

To increase oxytocin hugging helps, holding hands, getting a massage would help since it involves touching.

 

 

The hormone that makes you high. Endorphins work as a painkiller to reduce your pain. However, it does not eradicate your pain only lowers it. At best they decrease the intensity of pain.

 

In essence, they boost happiness for a short time. Runners high is associated with it. Also, the time when you are in shock or got injured badly, Endorphin helps you reduce your pain.

 

Endorphins are released when running or exercising, yoga meditation helps, charity, laughing and some foods like grapes, chocolate, oranges, spicy foods etc.

 

 

Popularly called the feel-good hormone. This type of hormones affects your happiness and well-being. This hormone also helps you remembering stuff. In essence, your memory is also affected by it.

 

People with good sleep pattern, sexual desire, drive indicated good serotonin levels. However, people with low serotonin suffer from anxiety, stress, mind rush, anger.

 

For adequate serotonin, you need vitamin D (standing in sun will help, use sunscreen), foods like banana, yogurt, eggs, tofu, pineapple, salmon etc.

 

 

Usually produced to fight stress. It takes your brain into an override where your mind for short time becomes highly alert. This hormone is popularly called fight or flight hormone.

 

It is sudden high you feel when bungee jumping, on a high swing ride, water rafting etc. In a short span you may experience rapid heart rate, dilated pupils, jitter, sweating. These are some signs you are experiencing called the adrenaline rush.

 

Best ways to regulate is through meditation, regular exercise, limiting alcohol and caffeine consumption.

Hope you liked.

Posted on Leave a comment

How to Read 2x Faster

how to read 2x fasterReading Time: 2 minutes

Reading is a skill. Hence, some people get a better understanding by gliding through text once whereas others might have to read twice, thrice and still cannot comprehend fully.

Reading faster helps in reducing the time and mental effort. Ever wished if you could get more out of text and could read books faster. This can help you read more books enhance your knowledge and reflect your capability.

How to Read 2x Faster

 

Reading has two primary components

  1. Language
  2. Comprehensibility

 

The language is an important component, without saying the more the command over language the more you will fly through text.

 

Comprehensibility is your ability to understand what you are reading with ease. The more the ease the better your ability.

 

Ways you can use to swim through text

 

 

  • If you are a beginner or are struggling with reading in general, I suggest building base use a pen/pencil to read through the text. Your pen/pencil follows your eyes through the text.

 

 

  • Understand first what you desire to derive from book/topic/text/article you are reading. More often than not, we read through first to the last word. Depending upon your demand you set the tone of your reading.

 

  • Use skimming, skimming is done to get a general view of the text/book/article. Here you glance through the topic to get an overall view. Example, if I am in a hurry to read this article then instead of reading from top to bottom First would read the topic and some lines of introduction then would find anything highlighted or slant written lines or boldly written line, read through them and points mentioned and leaving other things.

 

 

  • Use Scanning, when you need to understand a subtopic or concept/idea from a book. When you know what you want from the text it is better to directly to the main crux without dallying with the book. Example, I know what is want through this article is to learn techniques, hence, I scan through the text to find “Ways you can use to swim through text”, this is where I shall focus more than other areas of articles.

 

 

  • If you know about the topic then you can skip parts which you are aware off to speed read it. I do that most of the time. Many of the details are that I find I know or stats I skip to the areas which require more concentration.

 

  • Become a voracious reader, if not then at least read whenever you find an opportunity. This will make your reading ability stronger. Some years back it took me 2 hours to read a Newspaper, Now I can read it easily under 40 minutes with more accuracy.

 

Reading requires an investment of time and effort. You have to work through it. There is no doubt that the more you read, the faster you will get at reading provided you are comprehending what you are reading simultaneously.

Posted on Leave a comment

7 Hacks to stick to your New Year Resolution

New Year ResolutionReading Time: 2 minutes

I am sure many of you found your new resolutions fervor to dissipate after one or maybe 2/3 weeks. We make plans in hope do change ourselves for better, to inculcate good habits or to do something which reflects positively on us and as well on others.

But sooner or later our enthusiasm towards fulfilling our resolutions seems to expire. And we forget it like every other new year resolution that has happened already.

Obviously, every one of us wishes the contrary to what happens to most of us. Is that we succeed in fulfilling our resolutions even if we don’t get what we wanted at least effort should be there.

 

Here are 7 ways you can stick longer to your new year resolutions:

 

7 Hacks to stick to your New Year Resolution

 

Write it somewhere

 

via GIPHY

Where you can go back see whenever you don’t feel like committing to your goal/resolution. Writing your goal can work better if you aren’t keen on making your resolutions public. Also, since nobody knows even if you fall short you are your own judge so there is scope for betterment.

 

Recommended – Best Career Option for Tech Geeks | Jobs If You Like Computer

 

Find people with the same resolutions or similar ones.

 

via GIPHY

This way you get to make new friends or maybe strengthen existing ones. By finding people with same/similar resolutions you knowingly or unknowingly are in healthy competition with each other. You use peer pressure for committing to a resolution.

 

Find a strong reason for it.

Sometimes all we need is the reason to push ourselves in the right direction. Hence, you should find a very good reason for your resolution. This will help you persevere longer. A weak reason would have a weaker motivation to comply with.

 

Set your resolution like your alarm.

 

via GIPHY

Remind yourself if not every day then at least thrice a week about what your resolution is and more importantly why you are doing it. The resolution will be easily forgotten if not reminded.

 

Recommended – 10 Hacks to Improve Your Memory That Actually Works

 

Change your Perspective

We usually see are resolutions in terms of gain/loss. This is a problem. Whatever you are trying to achieve see it as self-investment. Example, we want to look fit to better our chances of finding a beautiful partner. What if we don’t find it. This way resolution will suffer a setback. Better to see the resolution of achieving fitness through a lens of self-Investment. Don’t you want to look your best version?

 

Use an android/other application to track your commitment.

There various applications which help you track your goals and targets. Why not use it. Some of them are Goal tracker, My Journey, Loop, Remente and others.

 

Be optimistic

 

via GIPHY

It helps. You have set a resolution and you need motivations, especially during the troughs. Don’t give up on yourself as there is already an ocean of people doubting you. Have faith in yourself. Wake up with enthusiasm even if you have to force it through your nerves and find time to fulfill your resolution.

At the end whatever your commitment/resolution is. You should set out with determination and discipline. You will achieve it.

Leaving with a quote

“To Hope Is to give yourself a future and that commitment to future makes the present inhabitable “

-Rebecca Solnit.

Posted on

16 Signs you are an HSP | Highly Sensitive Person

Highly Sensitive PersonReading Time: 3 minutes

HSP stands for highly sensitive person, Doctor Elaine Aron is credited with this research finding. She has worked on it for more than two decades since the early 90s.

Her research suggests, that around 15-20 percent of people are HSP. Also, it is not a disorder. It is innate, meanings it’s in your genes. Brains of highly sensitive individuals work a little different from the others. It is seen in animals also as a survival state in animals by observing before acting.

It is not typically associated with introverts. Around 30 percent of extroverts are HSP. So even if you are an extrovert, introvert or even an ambivert then you should have look at it.

If you are a Highly Sensitive Person, then

 

16 Signs You are Highly Sensitive Person

 

1.   You are a deep thinker

You are often engaged in your thoughts, they never seem to leave you. Most of the times you are thinking about something or the other. You are a person who usually feels engaged in reflection and introspection.

 

2.   You seek answers to questions that most would ignore,

Since you are a deep thinker you engage in many questions to life and its meaning. You have that philosophical bent of mind.

 

3.   Empathize strongly,

If you often see yourself empathizing rather than sympathizing, then probably you are a Highly Sensitive Person. HSP individuals strongly feel the pain of the others. Hence empathizing comes naturally to them.

 

4.   A Coffee might give you a headache,

In most cases, coffee helps you with your headache but here it can give a headache. Since you are sensitive to the effects of caffeine.

 

5.   You get Uncomfortable with loud noises,

You are predisposed to prefer silence and you get irritated easily with loud music or noise.

 

6.   You get overwhelmed with strong smells, sirens and bright lights,

Being a highly sensitive person, you are susceptible to bright lights and strong smells.

 

7.   You are detail oriented,

You are very careful about any task assigned to you. You do proper planning and test drills before the actual event.

 

8.   You abhor change,

You get annoyed or shaken up if someone changes your room, get transferred to another place and other changes in life.

 

9.   You consciously make an effort to avoid an overwhelming situation,

An HSP makes an effort to avoid situations which will be a sensory overload for him/her. HSP tries to avoid situations that would make him/her upset.

 

10.   Test anxiety almost comes naturally to you,

Ever felt nervousness or anxiety continuing during exam or test. An HSP can relate you to it. You perform worse if you are being observed or are in the test environment with competitors.

 

11.   You need time off from sensory overload,

You have a place where you find solace. You often tend to retire to a quiet place after being overwhelmed/ sensory overload.

 

12.    You know about your environment like a fox,

You are a fox when comes to sensing your environment, without looking you are aware of what is going on around you. This comes with the fact that you easily get stimulated.

 

13.   You often get startled by the sudden noise,

You get frightened easily from sudden movements or sudden noises.

 

14.   You hate making mistakes,

You make efforts not to make mistakes or errors. As a result, you carefully deliberate over things and make sure there is no chance that you make errors.

 

15.   You know what’s going on,

Your complex understanding of things and general observant nature makes you a perceptive person, who knows who is angry and when? For that you don’t need to ask, you just know.

 

16.   You are highly self-aware,

Being an HSP is not so bad, as you are the master self-awareness since you are analytical and deep thinker this comes naturally to you.

Being HSP is not a disadvantage it makes you more receptive and responsive to your environment. You’re probably like Peter Parker (Spiderman) whose senses keep ting a ling when danger or uncertainty is ahead.

Posted on 2 Comments

The Power of Sleep

Power of SleepReading Time: 3 minutes

A good night’s sleep is essential for a healthy body and mind but what about those afternoon naps? This article will talk about the benefits of afternoon siestas!

We all love to sleep. Its one of the most peaceful moments of the day. But most of us don’t know the important benefits related to sleep. Apart from rebooting our system, in a way, it also helps in memory formation. In this article, we are going to talk about the overall benefits of sleep but also the power of taking naps in between.

The Importance of Sleep

Sleep plays a very important role as it helps crystalize emotional information, that we gather throughout the day. It also helps us control how we feel. When we are asleep, our brain is encoding information based on the experiences from the day. Which makes the act of sleeping extremely essential for preserving memories.

Emotional memories, researchers argue, are unique because of the way the influence our amygdala, our brain’s emotional core. This core is what makes our memories of wedding days or funerals or anything emotional, remembered carefully. Such emotional days are better remembered than other days.

A good night’s sleep is extremely good at transforming these experiences into emotional memories. That is why it is recommended that we get at least six-eight hours of sleep every day.

Recommended – 5 Ways to Get Bank Jobs without Giving Bank Exams

 

Not All Sleep Are Equal

However, not all periods of sleep are equal. The sleep we get a night, the long 6-8-hour ones, are the ones in which we go through several phases of sleep. This is known as REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. It is closely associated with our emotional memories. Researchers argue that more REM sleep makes people better at assessing other people’s emotional intentions and also in recalling emotional stories.

Another thing that happens when are in the REM phase is related to our Prefrontal Cortex. Prefrontal Cortex is the most developed part of our brain. Researchers also call this location of our brain where we have the impulse to keep calm and not react to things immediately.

When we are awake, this part of the brain keeps our emotions in check. But this connection is reduced when are in REM sleep. Our brain also paralyzes our body during REM phase, otherwise, we would be constantly moving, which could hurt us.

 

Recommended – 12 Easy and Effective Study Hacks for an Excellent Score

 

Naps or Slow-Wave Sleep

But there are also other kinds of sleep which do not feature the REM phase. These are naps. Naps are also known as ‘Slow-Wave’ sleep and it’s usually the phase of sleep. It also helps consolidates memories. But are they effective in keeping our emotions in check as the REM sleep does?

Researchers in order to answer this did a study with children to see the effects of naps. The study found that the children who didn’t take naps were grumpier and mentally exhausted. And the children who took naps were, as the researcher called ‘cool as a cucumber’.

In adults as well, research has shown that afternoon naps help one destress and feel better during the day. Any stress or headaches or just normal issues of the day make the brain stressed, so afternoon naps help one feel better.

 

Recommended – 10 Myths About Psychology Busted

 

To Conclude

The overall science of sleep is still complicated as research is still discovering new things. For example, a recent paper has argued that a longer duration of REM sleep leads to people getting depressed. The reason is not yet known but there are strong linkages.

This sort of findings just makes the overall phenomenon of sleep more complicated. But for now, what you should take away from this article is that sleep is essential for us. In the end, the best prescription for a heartache or a confused mind or a headache is to get a good sleep!

So, the next time your feeling low or feel stressed, try to take a nap. As science says it will help. Till then cheers and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits.

Posted on

11 Signs You Are Stressed

11 Signs You Are StressedReading Time: 3 minutes

Stress is common to all. People stress often. Stress happens both in humans and animals. We are sure that the majority of us are dealing with stress on a regular basis, maybe even right now.

11 SIGNS YOU ARE STRESSED

What is stress?

Term stress was coined by Hans Selye in 1936. Stress is a way of response in our body that usually affects us in a negative way.

There are various stimuli that work to produce stress. These stimuli are both external and internal.

However, there are situations where we are not even aware we are dealing with stress.

Recommended – 13 Easiest Ways to Cope with Stress

Here are 11 signs you are dealing with stress:

  

1.    The most common symptom in this category is muscle stiffness and pain. Headaches and Chest pain is also observed when a person is stressing.

    

2.    Change in metabolism, people who often go through stress report upset stomach or stomach pain.

3.    Problem with sleeping, also another common symptom that you are stressing is a problem with sleeping. It can manifest in sleep advancing, change in sleep pattern and simply not being able to sleep.

4.    Increased susceptibility to cold or feeling feverish often is also a common sign that you might stress chronically.

5.    Getting easily frustrated or irritated. The most obvious sign is a typical moody behavior where one gets easily angry or annoyed by small triggers.

6.    Avoiding others is another common sign that indicated we are stressing. Generally, when we are stressed, we usually aren’t interested in socializing.

7.    Stress induces lack of motivation in a person makes him much more pessimistic in his outlook. The drive is missing.

8.    Getting overwhelmed is not a good feeling. Results in the loss of control and emotion. Our emotions become overbearing. This is also another common sign of stress.

9.    The surest sign that is common to all is racing thoughts. Ever had a feeling that you a jumping from one thought to another. These thoughts are usually unresolved thoughts that bombard us off-guard.

10.   Inability to focus is a classic symptom of stress. Often when one is stressing then are retentivity and ability to focus reduces.

11.   Forgetfulness, research shows that stress can have a debilitating impact on our memory. Stress makes it difficult for one to create short-term memories or turning short term memory to long term.

These are commonest signs that you might be stressing. We suggest you kindly talk to someone or seek help.

Recommended – 10 Hacks to Improve Your Memory That Actually Works

Posted on 2 Comments

How to Improve Concentration in the Age of Distraction

Improve conentrationReading Time: 5 minutes

With our eyes being constantly bombarded with images and information, how can one build and retain concentration in such a distracted age? This article shares some tips just to do that.

Our life in today’s world seems to be always switched on. We seem to always have our smartphones in our hands, laptop screen in front of our eyes. In the west, an average person spends around 10 hours a day in front of a screen (mobile and computer). In the context of India, a poll found that the connected youth of India spend around nine hours a day on the phone or a computer screen.

These have become, without us knowing, an integral part of your lifestyle. But what these devices have done is hampered our concentration and retention spans.  A study found that distraction by emails and phones have led to drop of 10 points in a person’s IQ. Another recent report estimated that we get interrupted every eight minutes, that is around 60 interruptions in our waking day! And all these interruptions contain a lot of information of some kind. A recent survey by the University of California estimated that we are bombarded by at least 30gb worth of information a day!

The overall impact of all this is on our concentration levels. We may be living in a constant state of alertness but never really giving full attention to one thing. This means the development of short attention spans, never able to retain information for a longer duration, and forgetting things very easily. In this article, we will tell you tips in regaining your concentration levels and adapting yourself in the age of constant distraction.

How to Improve Concentration

 

The Five More Rule

One of the simplest ways to boost your concentration levels in the five more rule. It’s simple, whenever you feel like quitting or giving up, just say to yourself five more – be it minutes, be it pages – as it will enhance your focus. The idea is to go beyond the point of restlessness or frustration which helps build mental strength. It is training your brain to endure and help develop concentration levels.

 

One Thing at a Time

These days people argue that we have reached new levels of multitasking. But in reality, we are not multitasking but rather switching between activities and not doing each one of them properly. Multitasking leads to a continuous partial attention, which lowers your overall concentration levels. So, the best way is to do one thing, properly, at a time. Before moving on to a different task take a 5-10 minutes break to organize your mind.

 

Meditation

Trying to fend off external and internal distractions is not an easy task. One of the best ways is to meditate and becoming more mindful. Meditation leads to mindfulness which helps develop overall concentration levels.

Recommended – 13 Easiest Ways to Cope with Stress

 

Counting Backwards

counting-backwards

Another unique way, which you can do in your free time, is to start counting backward from a thousand, sounds simple enough. Well, the catch is to count backward in sevens. It may sound annoying but it is actually a very effective way to develop your concentration levels.

Similarly, spelling words backward is also a good exercise to do. Start with simple words like pen, tip, etc and then move on to bigger words.

 

Exercises

Doing regular exercises also help the brain and the body to be in sync. During exercises, the brain is engaged with the body as it works out, which itself requires concentration.

 

Good Sleep

Lack of sleep also affects your concentration levels. One needs to have at an average eight hours sleep daily. But being surrounded by phones and laptops screens we almost go to sleep while using them, which is harmful to the eyes and the brain. It is recommended to have good sleep to keep away from phones or any form of screens at least an hour before sleeping.

Recommended – How To Deal With Procrastination?

 

Read a Book!

 Improve Concentration

I know you must be saying, then what will we do if we are not on our phones or on our laptops before we sleep? Then the answer might shock you – Read an actual book! We have gotten so used to skimming information from a screen that most of us have forgotten what reading an actual book feels like. Reading a book not only is good before going to sleep but it also helps you develop your concentration levels as it requires careful reading of the intricate plot structure, complicated characters and the flow of the narrative.

 

Eliminating Distractions

 Improve Concentration REMOVE DISTRACTIONS

While you cannot do away with a phone in today’s world but you can make it less distracting. For one, turn off all non-human notifications from apps. It means turning off notifications that are sent by non-humans. Another tip is grayscaling your screen. These days hidden in settings is the option to turn your screen into full black and white. The advantage of this that most apps are designed in a way to distract you from your work by using ‘eye-catching’ colors. So, by grayscaling you avoid this trap and you can choose what to use and what not to use.

To sum up, these are eight ways to help you develop concentration levels and help you be more productive in any work that you do. While you are at it don’t forget to explore yourself at Brainpundits, till then cheers and be awesome.