The neuroscience community has been surprised by recent research that reveals that our brains can change and be improved, at any age in our life cycle. Neuroscientists now call this process neuroplasticity. Additional good news is that we can direct our own neuroplasticity and train our brains to be far more effective – we can literally rewire our brains on demand. However, very few people really know how to take advantage of these neuroscience breakthroughs and actually apply them in a way that is relevant to their life. That is why I wrote this book: to make available to everyone, in easy-to-understand language, practices to greatly improve your brain.
Since I’ve begun to apply it to myself and my management team, I’ve noticed not only a huge up surge in productivity, my team members are calmer, happier, and more focused. We are all actually starting to enjoy again coming to work every day. I highly recommend the book to any individual or organization seeking to reach peak performance.
~ Mary Johnson – Chief Operating Officer, Consultancy Resources International, New York
Options to Improve Your Brain Power
There are other programs available that are designed to improve your brain function. Most of them are complex and difficult for the average person to understand and implement. The 7 practices in my book are described in easy-to-understand language, are simple and fun to implement, and can be applied immediately to improve how you live, work and play.
We discussed Jonathan’s “7 Practices” in depth on The Coach Connection Blogtalk Radio show. They proved to be very effective and easy to implement. Jonathan has captured the essence of taking control of your own mind and how to grow and improve it at any age. I use his tips every day and they work and I gladly recommend them to our many clients.
~ Bill Dueease – President, The Coach Connection
Real Life Results – Improve Brain Power Case Study
Louise is a senior vice president at a large hospital who engaged me to be her executive coach a few years ago. The first time I met Louise her fingers were pecking away at an application on her laptop and her cell phone was awkwardly placed against her ear as she loudly conversed with the person on the other end. The reason she wanted an executive coach was because she was feeling extremely stressed and overwhelmed with all the tasks she had to accomplish daily at work. She found herself having to work over 80 hours a week just to keep up – and she was not sure she could continue to handle the immense pressure she felt. In fact, her physical and mental condition had become so severe, her doctor recommended she take medication to reduce her work-related anxiety.
I asked her why she was attempting to do so many things at the same time. She replied, “I get more work done when I muli-task.”
What I explained to Louise is that neuroscience research proves multitasking is a myth that actually greatly hinders productivity. The human brain is a sequential processor, unable to consciously focus full attention on two or more tasks at the same time. Businesses praise multitasking and even create job descriptions that require employees to be able to “multitask.” However, brain research clearly shows that attempting multitask actually reduces productivity and increases mistakes.
Sure, we can do simple tasks like walking and talking at the same time, but when it comes to higher level, true multitasking, your brain just can’t do it. When you’re walking and talking, you can’t really pay attention to both tasks. This is why you will naturally pause your conversation as your feet navigate around a pothole in the sidewalk – your brain needs to pay attention to the walking so you don’t fall over and hurt yourself. Your brain naturally focuses on tasks sequentially and cannot truly multitask.
Because attempting to multitask drains a lot of mental and physical energy, we feel like we’re productive – we tell ourselves that we worked hard and used energy so we must have produced a lot. However, that is just an illusion – attempting to multitask does not increase productivity. It greatly lowers productivity, and increases feelings of stress and anxiety.
Another illusion is that multitasking saves time. In fact, it consumes and wastes your time. What we call multitasking is really our brains attempting to rapidly switch our attention back and forth between tasks. But every time you switch your attention your brain goes through a sequence of activities to refocus and adjust – these brain sequences might only take a second but when repeated many times per minute the wasted time adds up. In addition, we lose track of previous progress and find ourselves needing to “start over,” perhaps muttering things like, “Now where was I?” This results in not only a waste of time but also an increase in mistakes – both of which can damage your productivity, and maybe put yourself and others in danger.
I showed Louise studies that prove a person who is attempting to multitask takes 50 percent longer to accomplish a task and he or she makes up to 50 percent more mistakes than a person working sequentially. Having digested this neurological information about the dangers of attempting to multitask, Louise asked me an excellent question. She asked, “If not multitasking, what should I do.” I gave Louise the detailed tips and techniques outlined in the book.
I challenged Louise to perform those tips for at least a week then check to see whether she was more productive and accurate in her work than when she “multi-tasked.” Louise got back to me just a few days later. She sounded so excited and happy on the phone. She told me that not only was she being more productive at work, she was feeling much less stressed and anxious, and was actually spending less time at work – no more having to work weekends to get caught up. As a result, Louise decided she didn’t need to take the anti-anxiety medication her doctor had recommended. Louise’s productivity and efficiency at work continued, and she had more free time to do the things she really loved.
His unique approach to change management and business development applies neuroscience to practical concepts in order to improve employee attitude and business performance. I highly recommend Jonathan to any business or professional seeking to reach their peak performance as well as any event planner looking to present one of the most intriguing discussions on business development around.
~ Janet Bronte – Principal, Global Market Consulting