It is possible to make full use of your brain's amazing powers, according to the book Limitless (2020). It is dedicated to everyone who has ever thought that they were too stupid, too slow, or too incompetent to achieve. Learn how to unlock the potential of your brain - and acquire the ability to accomplish whatever you set your mind to.
Who is it that is reading the Limitless book?
- People who are lifelong learners and have high ambitions
- Self-criticizers who are concerned that they will never be able to learn as quickly as everyone else
- Businesspeople, students, and workers who wish to fit learning into their hectic schedules may benefit from this program.
Who exactly is Jim Kwik?
Jim Kwik is a world-renowned specialist in meta-learning — the process of learning how to learn – and has published many books and articles on the subject. Kwik was born with a learning impairment as a result of an injury during his youth. While he had been struggling in school for years, Kwik started to discover the mysteries of learning itself. It was his discoveries that formed the foundation for Kwik Learning, an instructional software that is now utilized by people and businesses in more than 100 countries across the world.
What exactly is in it for me? Unleash the potential of your brain to study and accomplish anything.
Jim Kwik, the author, was born with a catastrophic brain injury, which he sustained as a kid. It caused him to have a learning disability, which meant he had to work much harder than the other students to succeed in school.On top of that, he was subjected to a great deal of bullying. Even a teacher reportedly referred to him as "the kid with the shattered brain" because of his condition. For years, the author believed that, as a result of his disability, he would have to put in a lot of effort to learn new things. Kwik, on the other hand, discovered that there was another route while in college. He didn't need to work harder; he just needed to study more effectively. The techniques he discovered enabled him to sharpen his concentration, enhance his memory, and begin to absorb materials at a quicker rate than he had ever done before.
You, like the author, may have held false ideas about your own character. You will learn from the following notes that just a few little adjustments to your attitude, motivation, and techniques may help you become really unlimited. This set of notes will teach you why taxi drivers have larger brains than the general population, how Bach may aid your study efforts, and why you are no better at reading than a third-grader.
Technology makes our lives simpler, but it may also interfere with our ability to learn new things.
Is digital technology a positive or negative development? Despite the fact that the question is basic, the solution is everything but. Smartphones and tablets, on the one hand, may seem to be free devices. After all, they do enable us to "outsource" some of the more straightforward processes of our brain. It sounds fantastic, doesn't it? Perhaps this isn't the case. According to some experts, this digital habit is becoming an issue in society. They think it has a negative impact on our cognitive skills. Consider how we are all continuously switching between things – from working to checking alerts to texting – without pausing to think. One neurologist, Daniel J. Levitin, thinks that this mechanism leads the brain to burn through its fuel more rapidly, resulting in us feeling worried and fatigued. The main point here is that, although technology makes our lives simpler, it may also interfere with our ability to learn.
We have continuous access to a plethora of information that is literally at the tip of our fingers. The fact that the typical individual now consumes three times more information than they did in the 1960s should come as no surprise. In any case, bombarding oneself with that much knowledge isn't always a positive experience. Why? Because having access to information anytime you need it causes your memory to deteriorate. It withers away, like a muscle that hasn't been used in a while. Alternatively, pushing oneself to remember information really results in the creation and strengthening of new memories. The overuse of technology may also impair your ability to think critically in certain situations. After all, there isn't a dearth of differing viewpoints on the internet. Some might argue that it is a positive development since it enables us to see problems from a variety of different viewpoints.
However, the reality is that the majority of us do not actively seek out other points of view. Instead, we select a few sources with which we already agree and utilize them to strengthen our views, basically adopting the perspectives of others that have already been formed for us. This implies that our ability to reason and solve problems starts to deteriorate, and we begin to lose our ability to think critically. As a result, it is now more essential than ever to maintain optimal brain function. What is the best way to go about it? Jim Kwik made a few recommendations. One easy suggestion, which is particularly relevant in the digital era, is to set aside 30 minutes each day to switch off all of your electronic gadgets. Allow yourself to relax and be creative at this time. Allow your thoughts to roam.
But what happens if you do wind up spending too much time with your electronic devices? Is it going to alter you – and your brain – for the rest of your life? Perhaps this isn't the case. As we will see in the next section, our brains are both robust and adaptive.
Each of us has the ability to alter the way our brain functions.
Is it possible that you have said to yourself, "I'm too stupid to learn a second language," "I have a poor memory," or "I'm simply not good at this topic" more than once? It's easy to slip into the trap of believing that we're somehow less talented than our colleagues when we spend too much time comparing ourselves to them. However, we may not be able to achieve our full potential as a result of this. You may be dissatisfied with your current performance - but it does not rule out the possibility of achieving greatness in the future. Your brain is extremely neuroplastic, as scientists call it, which means that it may change over time. Simply said, it implies that it evolves throughout the course of your life. It's a fantastic deal.The most important lesson here is that everyone of us has the ability to alter our brain's function.
A large number of individuals believe that our brains achieve their maximum capacity around the time of puberty. Then, according to the legend, it's all downhill from there. Fortunately, there is a plethora of data that suggests the opposite. Consider the situation of taxi drivers in London. In order to get a license, individuals must complete a substantial amount of coursework and pass an exceedingly tough examination. To become a London cabbie, a prospective driver must spend three to four years remembering each of the 25,000 streets in a 10-kilometer radius of the city. All of this learning has a significant impact on their cognitive abilities. Researchers examined the gray matter in the memory regions of London taxi drivers compared to that of regular individuals and discovered that drivers actually had greater gray matter.
The practice of memorizing thousands of streets seems to drive their brains to develop new neural connections as a result of the experience. It alters the structure of their brains and may even cause them to grow in size. What exactly does this imply for us? The good news is that we can all do precisely the same thing, which is a relief. But first and foremost, we must cleanse our brains of what the author refers to as lies. The phrase "Limited Ideas Entertained" is abbreviated as "LIFE."One of the most damaging lies we are taught is that our IQ is set for the rest of our lives. It is not quite as straightforward as that. It is true that your IQ test results have a tendency to stay constant over time. However, intelligence does not assess your capacity to learn. Furthermore, it does not reflect your real intellectual level, which may fluctuate and improve with time.
Because this LIE - the notion of a set IQ – is both restricting and harmful, it should be avoided. Everyone has the capacity to be a genius - we simply don't believe it when we see it in front of us. As a result, maybe it is time to begin weaning yourself from these LIES and begin thinking more optimistically.
Negative ideas should be eliminated from your head and replaced with good ones.
Every day, each of us has tens of thousands of ideas that we don't share with anybody else. A significant number of them are queries. And many people are doing it again. We all have what are known as "dominant questions," which are those that come up more often than others in our conversations. For example, the author was once asked to spend some time with star Will Smith on a film set in Toronto, which he gladly accepted. The actors and crew worked outdoors in the middle of winter, from 6:00 p.m. until 6:00 a.m., for the duration of the production. It was during a brief period of downtime that Smith and the author discovered that one of the actor's most often asked queries was: "How can I make this experience even more magical?" Smith took a number of actions in response to his main query. As opposed to relaxing, he utilized his break to serve everyone hot chocolate and make jokes, which made the whole event more enjoyable for everyone involved.
The most important lesson here is to free your mind of negative ideas and replace them with good ones instead. So, what do you believe are the most frequently asked questions at the moment? And do you find it to be beneficial? Many of us, unfortunately, have negative or disempowering thoughts, such as "How can I make people like me?" or "How can I persuade others to like me?" Alternatively, "How can I become invisible?" These kinds of questions are counter-productive. All they do is to conceal your true nature. Instead, you may attempt to come up with fresh questions that will give you more power. They are almost certainly going to be different for everyone of us. These are the questions that the author is asking himself: "How can I make this better?" And, "How does my mind function so that I can function properly?"
The majority of the queries are positive in nature. And they have the ability to perform a very crucial function: they may change your attitude from a negative, limited one to a positive, unlimited one. This new way of thinking may even be good for your health in the long run. For example, research has shown that individuals who are optimistic are 13 percent less likely to suffer from heart disease or depression. So, the next time you catch yourself saying things like "I can't," "I'm not," or "I don't," try flipping those words around. Make the following statement instead: "I haven't always been excellent at this, but it doesn't rule out the possibility of being great at it today." Remember the moments when you were successful - even if it was just partially.
These are all excellent strategies for beginning to silence your inner critic. If you like, you can even give it a ludicrous persona, replete with wacky physical characteristics and a stupid name. It should be mocked anytime it attempts to pull you down, and you should become proficient at distinguishing between that self-critic and the actual you. Learn to be optimistic, and you will find yourself more receptive to the joys of life and all the possibilities that it has to offer.
Motivate yourself to alter your behavior by clearly identifying yourself and your reason for doing so.
The terms "passion" and "purpose" are often used in the same sentence. These words are used to speak about anything that sparks a fire inside us, something that we like doing more than anything else. But, in reality, passion and purpose are two very different things. Passion is something that exists inside you. Other people's expectations or preconceptions about you are hidden under your inner core, where they can only be found by digging deep. However, the purpose is directed towards what you are now experiencing. It is something that you can share with others or that you can make a contribution to the world. For example, you may have a strong desire to learn how to weave baskets. However, it's possible that your goal is to teach people how to weave baskets. This may all seem complex, but if you want to have an endless supply of drive and energy, it's critical to first identify your passion and then utilize that passion to discover your life's mission.
The most important lesson to take away from this is: Motivate yourself to alter your behavior by clearly identifying yourself and your reason for doing so. Consider the following scenario. Consider a 70-year-old who is in good health. To make it to the gym on time in the morning, he wakes up at 5:00 a.m every day. Why? Early mornings or weightlifting are two things he may be enthusiastic about. No. He does it because he believes there is a greater good in doing so. And this is for the sole purpose of keeping up with his grandkids. What does that imply for you personally? Consider how often you find yourself trying to find the desire to finish things. Perhaps you should consider why you set out to accomplish those chores in the first place. If the solution is related to your goal, you will be more inspired to take action on it.
Furthermore, there is a second technique for getting motivated. Consider your own identity and what distinguishes you from others. The answers to these questions have the potential to be powerful motivators for behavioral change. The author uses the example of the research carried out at Stanford University to illustrate his point. Participants were split into two groups by the psychologists. They said to one group, "How essential do you think it is for you to vote?" The question posed to the second group was somewhat different: "How essential do you think it is for you to be a voter?" The other group responded positively. Those who were asked if they were registered to vote were 13 percent more likely to vote than those who were not.What does this teach us about ourselves? In other words, it seems that when you identify with a goal you want to accomplish or a habit you want to cultivate, your motivation increases.
However, although that response is promising, it falls short of the mark. If you are lacking in motivation, there may be a variety of other factors at play. Some of these will become more obvious in the following remarks.
Get adequate sleep, consume nutritious meals, and engage in regular physical activity to keep your brain healthy.
As a result, you have a clear sense of purpose and the motivation to take action. However, there is still something that may prevent you from achieving your goals. What is that stumbling block? There are many possible causes, including a lack of energy brought on by eating the incorrect kind of food or not getting enough sleep. Sleep deprivation is associated with a wide range of physical and mental health problems. Depression, irritability, heart disease, and even Alzheimer's disease are among the conditions on this list. Briefly put, don't compromise your sleep! The proper amount of sleep, nutrition, and physical activity are all necessary for your brain to operate at its optimal level. The most important lesson here is to take care of your brain by getting adequate sleep, eating nutritious meals, and exercising on a regular basis.
At first glance, sleep and exercise don't seem to have anything in do with one another. However, they are, in reality, very intimately related to one another. Exercise on a regular basis may really help you sleep better. Participants in a 16-week study on the effects of aerobic exercise on sleep, for example, discovered that they slept longer each night after going to the gym every day. To be exact, it will take another one and a quarter hours. The fact that physical activity is essential is, perhaps, no longer news. So why aren't we doing anything about it? We all have a slew of reasons, after all. It's tedious to lift weights. We don't have the time, and gym memberships are too costly.
The fact is, however, that the advantages of exercise exceed any and all of these concerns by a wide margin. And these advantages aren't only restricted to muscular growth and weight loss; they also have an impact on your cognitive function. Regular aerobic exercise may increase the size of your hippocampus, which is the memory and learning center of your brain. As a result, your brain needs enough sleep and regular physical activity. What else is there? There is, however, another important requirement: high-quality food. In the opinion of Dr. Lisa Mosconi, a neuroscientist and nutritionist, there are 45 different sources of nourishment for the brain. Avocados, blueberries, broccoli, dark chocolate, eggs, leafy greens, salmon, turmeric, walnuts, and water are among the top 10 foods to consume. Sleep, exercise, and a healthy diet are all important. The question is, how can you ensure that taking enough of them becomes a habit?
You'll have to put forth some effort. It may take anything from 18 to 254 days to become a habit - but you can do it, no matter how long it takes! Begin by making one little adjustment at a time, and over time, the new habit will gradually but steadily become a part of your daily routine.
Increase your productivity by getting into a state of flow and using the power of tiny actions to accomplish your goals.
Remember the last time you were so absorbed in a task that you completely lost sight of the passage of time? You were most likely experiencing what psychologists refer to as "flow." When we are in this condition, we get the impression that the job we are doing is almost easy. We get a sense that we are being tested - yet the test is not too difficult to overcome. And we tend to feel a feeling of comfort and pleasure in what we're doing, as a result of our actions. When we are in a flow, our productivity can increase by up to 500 percent, which is one of the most beneficial aspects of a flow.Getting into a state of flow and harnessing the power of tiny steps are the two most important messages to take away from this.
What methods do you use to get into the flow? It all begins with removing all sources of distraction. Trying to restart the flow while checking your social media accounts every few minutes is impossible. It has been shown that it may take up to 20 minutes to get back into a job after being interrupted. In order to accomplish the job successfully, you must ensure that you have sufficient time. Make a commitment of at least 90 minutes, but two hours is preferable. Also, resist the urge to multitask while you are working. Scientists have shown that multitasking really reduces one's ability to be productive. Being in the flow is a wonderful feeling, most of the time. However, due to the current condition of affairs, certain duties are unable to be completed effectively. Almost often, they are either difficult or just not pleasant to participate in. So, what would you say to them if you had to? You might, however, use a different strategy: small steps.
Procrastination is a natural reaction to activities that are difficult or time-consuming. However, delaying it has a significant psychological cost. A task that has not been finished causes stress in the brain. Quite simply, you are unable to stop thinking about it until the task is completed. And there's more: procrastination is often associated with feelings of guilt and shame. What do you think individuals can do to prevent these emotions? They are much more prone to procrastination! However, by taking tiny, basic actions to accomplish a job, you may overcome your procrastination tendencies and achieve success. Let's say you're dreading the prospect of writing a lengthy speech. For starters, you might convince yourself that you don't have to complete the whole document at once. All you'll have to do is write the keynote.
What is possible is that, while putting everything together, you may discover that you are on a roll, and you will wind up doing more work than you had initially anticipated. By breaking down tasks in this manner, you greatly increase the likelihood of completing the work successfully.
Make effective use of your study time.
What, in your opinion, does Bach have to do with learning? Don't be concerned if you're scratching your head, since the link is anything but apparent. Numerous studies have shown that there is a close connection between music, mood, and academic performance. Some kinds of music have been shown to significantly improve our capacity to learn. This is when Bach enters the picture. Baroque music with a tempo ranging from 50 to 80 beats per minute is especially effective in focusing attention. Music is only one of the life hacks that may assist us in making use of our brain's lesser-known capabilities to promote learning and retention. The most important lesson to take away from this is to make effective use of your study time.
The ability to concentrate when studying is enhanced by smell, just as it is by music.Smells are often associated with memories. For example, consider how the scent of a specific spice can transport you back to your grandmother's cooking. There are many examples of how powerful scents can be in terms of bringing memories to the forefront of our minds. Now that you're aware of this, you may want to experiment with scents the next time you're studying for a test or preparing for a presentation. When you're studying, dab a few drops of essential oil on your wrist. Then, just before your test or presentation, repeat the process. It's possible that the fragrance may assist you in recalling your memories!
Jim Kwik, the author, offers a number of other strategies to aid in your learning. For instance, you may wish to make use of the concepts of primacy and recency. Something you learn immediately at the beginning of a session is more likely to stay in your memory for a longer period of time. Things that come immediately at the conclusion of a session should be done in the same way. What does that imply for you personally? Now that you've learned these concepts, you may want to rethink how you're going to approach your learning. Perhaps the most essential topics should be placed at the beginning and conclusion of each lesson, with the middle section reserved for things that aren't as critical.
The Pomodoro method may be used to make effective use of priority and recency in your work. Pomodoros are 25-minute pieces of productivity that are used in this technique to divide up your work or studies into manageable bits. A 5-minute rest is taken after each Pomodoro session is completed. It's as easy as setting a timer on your computer! It is possible that pomodoros will perform even better if they are used in conjunction with another method called active recall. Basically, it entails going over some information and then immediately verifying it to make sure that it has sunk in properly. It's as simple as closing your book or pausing the video you're watching and jotting down what you've learnt so far.
So you've reached the conclusion of the lesson. Are you ready to call it a day? Not exactly, to be honest. Another technique that may be found in the book is spaced repetition. Every step involves going through your content on a frequent basis. You might do some studying in the morning before breakfast and then again in the evening before dinner, if that works for you. This will assist in ensuring that the information is retained. Next, let's take a look at what more you can do to make the new information you've acquired even more memorable.
Techniques such as visualization may assist you in improving your memory and attention.
Concentration works similarly to a muscle in that the more you use it, the stronger it becomes. Here's one technique to get your heart rate up: visualize the target of your concentration as a glistening ball of light. Consider the following example: If you're having a discussion, the dialogue is represented by a glowing ball. When you notice that your attention is beginning to wander, bring it back to the bright light. Pretend there is nothing else in the world. This is known as a visualization method, and techniques like this can help you improve your focus on your abilities.They are also very effective when it comes to memorizing information. The main point to take away from this is that visualization methods may help you improve your memory and attention.
It is common for individuals to believe that they either have a "excellent memory" or a "poor memory." Instead, you may choose to believe that you have a trained memory, or even that you have an untrained memory. So, what is the best way to improve your memory? Visual imagery is the most effective method of learning to connect words with numbers or, indeed, anything else that has to be memorized in the first place. So, how does it function? Consider the following scenario. Take the following terms into consideration: fire hydrant, balloon, battery, barrel, board, and diamond. It is possible that if you were required to remember this word list, you would do it by repeating the words over and over again. However, this approach was unsuccessful. You'll most likely forget all you've learnt in a short period of time.
Instead, try making up a ridiculous narrative based on the words. The image that comes to mind is probably one of a fire hydrant being lifted into the air by balloons. Batteries, on the other hand, are responsible for popping the balloons, and those batteries are housed in massive barrels. The whole device — batteries enclosed in barrels pointed towards balloons – is propelled into the air by a large board that acts like a seesaw, launching the batteries into the air. Finally, a massive diamond serves as a support for the whole board. Take a look at how much better the words are now ingrained in your memory. A similar method could be used to help you prepare for public speaking engagements.It's referred to as the loci technique. To take advantage of it, first select the 10 most important topics you wish to cover. Next, visualize a location or a room that you are familiar with and contemplate a route through it.
Each of your talking points should now be associated with a distinct item or location in the room - your keynote, for example, might be represented by your bedroom light. Finally, rehearse your presentation with the help of a tour of your place, which is referred to as a loci. A well-trained memory will put you on the fast track to mastering a new language, delivering outstanding presentations, or just being a well-versed expert in any subject matter.
Reading is a necessary component of learning, and you can improve your reading skills.
Let's face it, reading isn't everyone's favorite recreational activity. Many individuals find the job to be tough, dull, and time-consuming in nature. For such individuals, unwinding after a hard day at work is best accomplished in front of the television or by playing a video game. However, research has shown that there is a link between reading ability and overall life achievement in adulthood. The stronger your ability to read, the more probable it is that you will be hired for higher-paying employment, and the larger your chances of success. And here's another thing: reading is a great way to give your brain good exercise. It stimulates a wide range of different mental processes at the same time. It helps to enhance memory and focus by increasing concentration. Giving up reading is akin to giving up on education in its most basic sense. The most important lesson here is that reading is a necessary component of learning, and that you can improve your reading skills.
What do you believe your reading speed is? For the majority of individuals, it is about 200 words per minute. Surprisingly, the majority of adults read no faster than elementary school children.This is due to the fact that lessons on how to read often end between the second and fifth grades. What causes some individuals to read slowly? The solution is often found in a technique called subvocalization. This simply implies that when individuals read, they are mentally pronouncing each word as they read it aloud. This has a negative impact on their reading skills. When you subvocalize, you can only read at the speed at which you speak. If this describes you, don't give up hope just yet. Your mind is capable of processing information at a far quicker rate. Counting out loud as you read may help you to minimize subvocalization. Simply repeat the numbers "one, two, three," and so on as you go down the page.
Counting while reading is a challenging task. However, it will teach your brain to use less subvocalization. You'll start to visualize the words rather than speaking them as time goes on. When you master this technique, reading will become more like watching a movie than listening to a lecture. Using a pacer is another excellent technique to decrease subvocalization and read more "visually" when reading. The process is simple: just slide your finger down the page as you read to get started. This method is successful because our eyes are programmed to follow moving things, which makes this technique quite effective. When you read with a visual pacer, you may improve your reading speed by anywhere from 25 to 100%! Of course, none of these strategies will be effective unless you make a serious commitment to reading. As a result, I set aside at least 30 minutes each day for reading.
Now that you have improved your reading speed, it is time to tackle the last piece of the puzzle: learning how to think more effectively.
To improve your problem-solving abilities, experiment with fresh and diverse ways of thinking.
Who is the first person who springs to mind when you hear the term "genius"? Perhaps Albert Einstein or Marie Curie spring to mind.However, the term "genius" does not refer only to individuals who possess exceptional intelligence or mathematical aptitude. Intelligence may be classified into many distinct categories. Consider the case of Venus Williams, for example. She, too, is a genius in many ways — someone with exceptional bodily-kinesthetic intelligence.That is to say, she is very proficient in the use of her body. The important lesson here is that, in order to get better at problem solving, one must experiment with new and varied ways of thinking. Learning what kind of intellect you possess is just the first step toward improving your ability to think more clearly and effectively. There are a slew of additional strategies available as well.
For example, you may experiment with various ways of thinking; you can attempt to approach issues in a way that is completely unfamiliar to you; you can experiment with breaking your thought patterns. One method for doing this is to put on your "thinking hat." Consider the following scenario: you have a collection of hats in various colors. When you are looking at an issue, you may now switch between hats every few minutes. Let's pretend you're wearing a red hat. That indicates it's time to take a more emotional approach to the issue. A green hat, on the other hand, may inspire ingenuity.
However, even a sophisticated approach such as this may not be sufficient in certain cases. Some issues need you to think in a completely different way than you are used to: exponentially rather than linearly. When you think in terms of exponential growth, you are no longer faced with crisis after crisis after crisis to solve. As an alternative, you should discover the underlying source of the issue and tackle it from there. Naveen Jain, an inventor and recipient of the Albert Einstein Technology Medal, is one of the proponents of exponential thinking in business. Consider the case of his business, Viome, for example. His motivation for establishing it was his belief that the most serious underlying health problem facing the globe is chronic disease.
So his business is engaged in the research and development of remedies for such diseases? Jain, on the other hand, chose a different strategy. To his credit, he recognized that our immune systems are significantly influenced by the way our gut bacteria digest food, rather than searching for piecemeal answers. As a result, Jain developed a method for evaluating the gut microbiota of a given person. It enables individuals to improve their health by consuming meals that are most suited to their individual needs. It's possible that your ultimate aim isn't to tackle big problems like the one Jain is tackling. However, by experimenting with different ways of thinking, you will be able to bring a variety of perspectives to the table.And it is almost likely that this will improve your chances of achieving big things.
The most important lesson in these notes is that many of us place artificial limits on our talents because we have incorrect ideas about our intellect or other skills. However, the reality is that you do not have to be born a genius in order to be successful. All that is required is that you develop your own unique skills and drive. You do this by defining your mission and utilizing it as a motivator to go ahead. It is therefore a question of selecting the most appropriate technique for learning, concentrating, memorizing, reading, and thinking from among the numerous excellent options available. Your learning will become really unlimited as a result of this. Advice that can be put into action: Make a list of things that you don't want to do. Creating to-do lists is a traditional productivity tool, but the problem is that they are ineffective at helping you prioritize your activities. That's when a "do not do" list comes in handy. To create one, start by listing all of the chores that you are unable to do due to unforeseen circumstances. Then make a list of activities that you might consider "busy work." Afterwards, list all of the jobs that you could assign to others or tasks for which you already have an automated system in place. Have a list of things you shouldn't attempt to do today!
Written by BrookPad Team based on Limitless by Jim Kwik