What does it actually mean to expand your mind? Am I talking about inflating your head with helium gas, like a hot air balloon? Ahh, I wish. But here, I am talking about boosting your mental abilities to elevate your standards of living.
Nobody is oblivious of the fact that with great power, comes great responsibility, all thanks to Uncle Ben. And to expand your mind is the humanly way to tap into that ‘great power’. I mean you can surely wait and hope to get bit by a spider, but I’d rather put my money on the former method.
The main problem with us today is that time and time again, we get stuck in life. As kids, getting stuck was off the charts. No matter how many walls we smashed into or how many times we fell onto the ground or how many times we hit our own head, our mischiefs and ‘pain in the ass’ activities only used to shoot up every day. There was no stopping us down back in those days.
But what happened as we grew up? Our minds, which should have expanded and become stronger than before, contracted and shrank. We got brainwashed and conditioned by society, the education system, family, and relatives. And as a result, we have to live with incompetence for the rest of our lives.
The incompetence of not fully living our lives, of not being able to do what we actually love, of not being able to grow out of our previous setbacks, of not being able to make the mistakes that are deemed necessary to go to the next level because, well, we are so freaking embarrassed of what the people will say.
Break The Conditioning
This is why it’s of paramount importance to break this conditioning, to expand your mind, to shatter the shackles, to disavow the orthodox and caged thinking, and to come out of this shithole that you have put yourself in so conveniently, once and for all.
We fall prey to the whole ‘what people will say’ narrative. As long as it’s someone else on the hook we don’t give two shits about what’s being said, but as soon as the spotlight turns towards us, we become all wary and careful and uptight.
Then we create our whole excuse world and keep on ranting throughout our lives, using those very excuses as a shield. Another big impediment that’s stopping you from expanding your mind. This is what keeps most of the people from doing what they actually can do, and ultimately they end up doing what everybody else is doing. If you wanna do the things that you actually want to and not just the things that the world wants you to do, then you gotta broaden your mindset, and see through the bullshit the whole world fed you with.
If you think the way everyone else is thinking, and try to fit in the structure they have laid out and are following, then you are also gonna get what everyone else is getting. Everyone wants to achieve something special in life, but they end up doing what everyone else is doing. And that’s the kind of trap you don’t wanna fall into.
So, without further ado, let’s get to the nitty-gritty details of how you can also expand your mind, and put that brainpower of yours into the places that are actually good for you.
#1: NEWify Everything to Expand your Mind
New people, new situations, new circumstances, new variables, new moods, new thoughts, new thinking, new mentality, new plan, new places, new utilities, new perspectives, new routes, new paths, new roads, new ways, new methods, new food, new culture, a new religion, new sights, new language, new songs, new movies, new TVs, and new everything.
Indulging in new stuff gives your mind a new dimension to discover, a new horizon to bite, and a new way of living your life. This is probably the best way to expand your mind. When you put yourself through a flux of a variety of things, you are broadening your perspectives. You become more humble and accepting, instead of circling in that tiny little cage you have built for yourself.
One becomes more understanding, more compassionate, more empathetic just by digesting and accepting more variables in life. You won’t be quick to judge or even give up pretty easily just because you hit a bump on the road. You will become adroit in looking at the same situation from multiple standpoints to choose the best path for yourself.
So, chase something new. Hunt for something new. Never stop. It’s not a process for a day or two, it’s a way of life. Adapt this into your nature as soon as possible and as much as you can. If you feel like you are living your life in a set pattern, immediately break that conditioning and put that big brain of yours into an untaped dimension.
Instead of jogging on the same path, discover a new route; in place of talking about the same shit to the same set of people, talk about different things to a distinct set of people; instead of watching the same genre of movies, watch something you have never seen before; stop reading the same set of books in one domain, explore different categories; and most importantly instead of saying the same monologue inside your head, say something anew and fresh.
#2: Meditate like Never Before
And here goes my rant for meditation again. I am sorry, but can’t really help it.
Meditation is a really powerful and brawny tool when it comes to expanding one’s mind. Enough research has been done, numerous MRI scans have been made, and an insane amount of brainpower has been exhausted to come to the conclusion that this shit is real and it does work wonders.
Meditation helps you see things as it is. It helps you gather all your focus scattered at a hundred and twelve places and bring it in, in one single place.
#3: Think Outside the Box
The very definition of thinking outside the box implies the fact that you are jumping out the boundaries of your mind, discovering new pathways to tread on, new patterns to play with, and new sights to gaze at.
One doesn’t simply have to think outside the box just for the heck of it or to just simply follow the fad and look cool. Thinking outside the box because you wanna impress people and society and make yourself feel accepted in the ‘gang’ isn’t really thinking outside the box.
Thinking outside the box is not a one-time thing, it’s more of a habit. It doesn’t actually involve thinking about something so high-end and out of this world that nobody has a clue as to what you are trying to mean. It simply means to look at your problems from a new angle and come up with the solutions that best serve your needs. Maximum returns in minimum inputs.
I have already written an article on the same topic in detail, so feel free to check it out here.
#4: Learn from both your Successes and Failures
This might come across as a cliche but for a pretty good reason. One should always strive to learn from everything one can get his hands on. Your past success and failures, the pros and cons, the positives and the negatives, not only yours but from other people’s experience as well.
We have given more importance to the fiasco part, as in everyone always preaching ‘learn from your mistakes’, setbacks, and failures. But hey, you should also strive to learn from your successes as well. Try to find out what did you do the last time that made it a success in the first place. And well, learning from failures is always a good idea.
You have limited time on this planet, so it’s crazy to try everything on your own and see for yourself whether a particular thing works or not. Find people who have already traveled the path you just embarked on, and see what you can learn from them. Again, both their failures and successes.
This goes back to #1, the simple act of feeding new information to your mind, new angles to look at, new directions to push at, which will keep you motivated and inspired from the inside.
#5: Keep your Eyes and Ears Open
Your eyes and ears the two major entry points to most of the data and information entering your mind. Now, though naturally, they remain open most of the time, they are not OPEN most of the time.
It may look like we are listening to things when actually we might be thinking something totally else, it might look like we are seeing a particular thing when a whole another film might be running in our minds.
If you are not seeing and hearing things that are right in front of you, you will miss out on things that are ought to be heard and seen in order for you to process and analyze things the way they are supposed to be, instead of living in your imaginary world. And that ain’t a pretty situation to be in.
Basically being present in the moment totally is the need of the hour. I have written a whole article on the same topic and you are more than welcome to have a look at it here.
#6: Self Awareness will Expand your Mind
Self-Awareness is probably the best tool at your disposal to reach the highest state a human can attain. Unless you are thorough with what you feel, why you feel what you feel, and what you are gonna do about what you feel, you have an uphill battle of living your life rationally.
Sans self-awareness you wouldn’t know what hit you. Your irrational outbursts in front of your friends, your eccentric behaviors in front of your ex, your mood swings when you are all by yourself—and a ton of other things which you will be totally clueless about as to why they are happening.
It’d be exactly like someone has put you in a dark room with no source of lights of any kind whatsoever, and there are ball throwing machines at every corner of the room that are throwing balls at you non-stop. You don’t even know what’s hitting you is actually a ball coming from a machine. You just get to feel the pain once it bruises your torso, and all you can do is pray to the almighty that the attacks somehow stop happening.
Now, ain’t that a pretty bad situation? You can neither dodge the balls coming at you and neither can you leave the room as it’s totally dark and you also have your pain to catch up with.
That’s where self-awareness jumps in. Not only will it lighten the room, but it will also help you guide out of the room itself. It will literally be your knight in shining armor.
Awareness will make you take out more from the environment. You will actually be able to access all the ‘There’s more than meets the eye’ stuff. The vibes, the energy, the frequency, the sixth sense, the intuition, the gut feeling—they are all subsidiaries that start emerging once we exploit the awareness properly.
Read my article on self-awareness where I have explained how one can pretty easily elevate one’s awareness at the level of your body, mind, and soul.
#7: Travel will Help You Expand Your Mind
Adding to the #1 point only, Travel can be a great way to add a bucket of new experiences, meet new people, make new friends, try new cuisines, familiarise yourself with a new culture, meet the new definition of ‘normal’, and a lot more.
Every new enriching experience you bite, add up to your existing set pile of memories, makes you push the boundaries you have confined yourself in, and lets you see the world with a brand new sight. It is probably one of the best ways to expand your mind.
And needless to say, it’s super fun as well. So, are you ready to pack up your bags and take a trip to your favorite beaches, adventuring mountains, thirsty deserts, and rich forests? Well, you can only imagine my temptation of heading to some of those places right the hell now.
#8: The Right Nutrients to Expand Your Mind
Now, one standpoint of unleashing your mental powers involves your physical brain. Your diet plays a really crucial role in enhancing the physical brain. You can google it or something and read more about such types of nutrients to add to your diet plan. (Read this)
Doing so will play a major role in enhancing your physical brain which needless to say will be a big boost in expanding your mind. It is exactly like extending the very playing field you’re playing on.
You will be essentially giving more room to your mind to breathe in. If your physical brain is weak or not in top-notch conditions, then even your thoughts won’t be of extraordinary level. So, it’s of paramount importance one takes this seriously.
#9: Play a Sport
We all know what playing a sport can help us achieve. From increasing our awareness of our own bodies, brushing up our reaction times, to decluttering our headspace; and not to mention the countless other benefits it can have on us as a whole.
Playing a sport is not just about playing the sport, it’s actually about a whole lot more. It’s about embodying the sportsman spirit. The spirit of winning fluently and losing gracefully, the spirit of empowering your colleagues, the spirit of growing your own metal, the spirit of playing fair. Come to think of it, the sportsman spirit can go a long way in elevating the standards of our lives as well.
So, before I ramble another couple of paragraphs trying to allure you into playing one, why don’t I save you the trouble of having to skim through another set of paras and just directly say it out loud.
Choose a sport you like and start playing it. (And btw, I play Tennis)
#10: Question Everything to Expand Your Mind
When I say everything, I mean everything. Right from the small and petty beliefs you have of which actor is the better one or which artist is more charming, all the way to the big and bulky one that may shake up your entire foundation and outlook about who you are, what’s life about, and those kinds of things.
Because the thing is, if putting a question mark on your own ideologies and dogma can shake up your entire foundation, then those foundations should have been uprooted already. There shouldn’t be any compromise of any kind whatsoever when it comes to laying the foundations of the very building you are gonna erect.
It will help us call out the biases and prejudices formed in our minds which are there for as long as one can think of and they are not going anywhere because no one is questioning how they got there. The whole process is working on autopilot that’s actually in a dire need of a manual maneuver.
People are funny. They would rather be wrong than go through the trouble of correcting their beliefs, which in turn becomes their biggest impediment to expand their minds. You don’t ever wanna put yourself in such a situation where you feel small or embarrassed for having to change your thinking pattern.
In fact, the one who is constantly able to change his core ideas and beliefs according to the underlying situation and circumstances is the one who’s actually learning something new and is ever-growing. Never stop questioning. Period. The day you stop questioning is the day you are dead, irrespective of whether you are actually dead or not.
#11: Read. Read. Read
Well, if you are reading this already, then chances are you have already overcome the humongous barrier of why most people don’t read: they find it utterly boring. And I can understand, the conventional books and most blogs, do lack a certain sex appeal purely on the basis of their style and design. All text, no images, same font, same size—I know all that.
But, the real money lies in what’s being said. Man, don’t even get me started with the amount of value, knowledge, and expertise the right kind of books and articles can impart. The mental doors it can open, the neural pathways it can establish, and just the sheer amount of new ideas reading is gonna inject in you will be breathtaking and worth drooling over.
It’s aptly said that a reader lives a thousand lives. Think about it, you have access to the most intimate part of a human aka thoughts. You are literally seeing the other person naked. And this is more naked than your physical nudes because your thoughts are the closest thing you have. Only a schmuck will never be able to comprehend the value one can get going through the thought processes of the most intelligent of people.
Here’s my list of favorite books that I highly recommend all of you guyz to go through at least once.
#12: Drink Some Sun
Whenever any situation starts feeling overwhelming or you start feeling unmotivated and counting yourself short for the petty mistakes you made or the times when you think of beating yourself up for the innumerable times you screw situations up, simply go out in the open, into the wild, and look up at the magnanimous sky.
Feel the infinite energy of the sun, or the exquisite beauty of the moon, or the artistic touch of the clouds, or the countless stars in the sky. They all give you a sense of just how freaking enormous the Universe that we are residing in is. For some moment we kinda get so deeply stuck in our own heads that we lose track of what’s actually real and what we think is real.
Standing under the never-ending sky will give you a real taste of how menial and trivial whatever you thought your biggest problem actually is in front of this universe. And this simple thought is enough to make you realize that you have got a lot more in you than you thought you had to tackle the boulder in your way.
Don’t confine yourself to the 4 walls, you are not a nocturnal creature. You are meant to be out there, flying high in the fast-blowing wind and drinking some sunshine.
#13: Write to Expand your Mind
Yeah, you saw this coming didn’t ya? See, while reading all the amazing books, going about newifying things, and stuffing in all the right stuff is just half the battle. You gotta do something to make use of all those ingredients you accumulated and transform them into a finger-licking delicious and scrumptious meal.
What are you gonna do with all that abundance of knowledge if you don’t know how to join the dots? Yeah, that’s right, simply collecting the best of ingredients wouldn’t do shit if you don’t know how to cook something amazing out of those ingredients.
Writing is one of the best ways out there to get the job done. Just look at me. How do you think I got this wicked smart and savvy? Yeah, that’s right. Writing. It helps you sort out your inner world as pen down your thoughts, emotions, and feelings.
At times when you might feel like you are not heard properly or people simply don’t get you, writing can prove to be a wonderful way to acknowledge your repressed thoughts and unheard emotions. And the cherry on top, it will streamline your thoughts that were earlier entangling your pretty little brain. Do give it a try.
#14: Repeat to Expand Your Mind
To excel at anything, you need repetition, period. You aren’t gonna become an astounding writer by writing just one fine moody day when you were ‘feeling good.’; you aren’t gonna become fit and bulky just by lurking around the gym for a couple of days, and you are certainly not expanding your mind just by following a couple of tips for a week or so.
There are no shortcuts, or elevators, or travelators, or home deliveries for that matter. You gotta hustle, practice, repeat, each and every day of your life if you actually wanna witness some results.
It’s should ideally become a way of life. Just like you take a shower every day (well, I hope so), you gotta repeat something or the other for your mind too, every day or it will rust. You gotta repeat the kind of thoughts you want to get embedded in your brain floor, repeat the kind of activities that make you go that extra mile, repeat every last thing you know is good for your mind until it naturally becomes a habit, and then sit back and see your mind exploding, in a good way.
Expand your Mind, Expand Your Life