Brain power

I love this: when your brain is positively supported, it significantly outperforms what it does when it’s negative, neutral or stressed, particularly related to “intelligence, energy, resiliency, how long you can work on a project, how many possibilities you see …”

Amazing research has shown that “doctors perform their diagnoses 50% faster with three times more intellectual flexibility when their brain is positive.” Children 4 years old were split into two groups. One group was slightly encouraged to be positive. They put blocks together up to 50% faster and more accurately than children in a neutral setting.

In the workplace: “We found that managers of companies, if they just increased their praise and recognition of one employee, once a day, for 21 business days in a row, … six months later… those teams, as opposed to a control group, had a 31% higher level of productivity, which is extraordinary.”

You may praise and recognize some of your people for the work they do. Good! What about those you don’t? Imagine the difference you could make in their performance (and their thoughts about themselves), by saying something positive to them daily. It’s worth a try.

Here’s something quick and easy you can do for yourself to increase positive brain activity.

Start each day by writing 3 things you’re grateful for about your work. This has tremendous benefit. Training your brain to look for positives makes you more aware and affects what you think about.

I know parents who ask their kids at the beginning or end of the day for something positive they did or noticed that day. It’s smart to train their brains early. Plus, they’re learning more about the way their kids think.

Small changes can positively impact your thinking and have a ripple effect through your days.

The quotes are from a Harvard Business Review interview with Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage / How a Positive Brain Fuels Success in Work and LifeI was given this book as a Christmas gift. It’s one of the most underlined books on my shelves. Also love his TED Talk. 20+ million views.

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