Your Brain: A Guide to Fine-Tuned Performance

Your brain: it’s not just a grey squishy thing. You can actually use it for a lot, like staying alive. You may not know it, but your brain? You need to use it or lose it.

Your Brain: 2 Classic Ways to Lose It

1) Stress. Stress has not only been shown to be a major health risk, but it can also seriously cramp your brain, make it stop growing new cells, even make it physically smaller, and make you dumberer!

2) Not using it. Still believing in the old myth that your brain doesn’t grow new cells and you can’t stop your memory from going as you grow older? Believe again. Turns out your brain is like your bicep, the more you use it the bigger it grows, even into old age.

Your Brain: How To Fine-Tune Performance

Now that you know stress (and negative emotions) can retard your brain’s performance, and that not stimulating those neurons can leave your brain muscles limp, what can you do to supercharge your brain?

1) Eat well! You and I both know this. While there are more diet theories than you can shake a stick at, most of them agree that more veggies & fruits than anything else is always a good thing. A cappucino is not a fruit (shucks).

2) Work that body! It’s good for your brain & it’s good for your body. It’s also been touted for so many years you know and I know its benefits, so ’nuff talkin’ and more sweatin’. Stretch, do cardio and pump up some muscle at least 3 times a week!

3) Challenge your brain! Push it and you grow it. Even when animals’ brains are damaged, when put in an enriched environment where they can play and learn, the brains are able to grow and repair themselves!

Learn new things, take on new challenges, learn a new language, pick up a new instrument, do sudoku, play games, pick up quantum physics, stretch yourself!

4) Dissolve that stress! Being the big brain-buster that it is, not to mention the bummer that it feels, boosting your ability to deal with stress smoothly is a big plus for anyone.

According to Robert Sapolsky, people who handle stress well are optimistic, take the initiative to do what they can, see things as they really are and not blown out of proportion, have friends and family they can go to and be supported (TLC baby!).

5) Get some TLC (tender loving care)! Yup, you read it right; getting TLC doesn’t only feel good, it provides real physical benefits for your brain. Rats that have been petted not only live longer, but their brains keep growing. Get your hug today, tell people it’s good for the brain. Hugz!

Your Brain: It’s Yours, Make It Lean, Make It Mean

Your Brain: it’s not just there to look good. Treat it well, feed it right, work it out, push it on, let go of the burden and give it some love, and instead of a beat-up old bicycle you’ll transform it into a rip-roaring Ferrari smokin’ down the tracks.

(This post is part of’s ‘How to…Group Writing Project‘! Sources from this post found via Matt, Senia & Dave, all of whom have kick-ass strategies to lead a greater life on their blogs. Thanks guys!)

9 Responses to “Fast and Effective Ways for Coping with Stress”

  1. Julie Melillo
    November 9 2008 at 5:50 am #

    I really enjoyed this post. It’s easy to forget how powerful our physical reactions are! I like your approach here. Especially reminding the reader that we are not always ready for change — though we think we are! I agree that the real failure is letting fear stop us. Thanks for posting this!

  2. karen parsons
    November 9 2008 at 6:46 pm #

    Hi Julie,

    Thank you for your kind words. I am glad it was helpful! “Coping with Stress” is a part of a series of articles on Stress that I have written, hopefully Life Coaches Blog will be posting the rest. So keep in touch!

    Kindest regards,


  3. Jill R.
    November 10 2008 at 6:55 am #

    This is a great article. I especially like the list of symptoms… some of which a lot of people may not recognize as a sign of stress.

    It’s also important to continue with your stress managment activities even when there are no signs or symptoms of stress. Doing this will help you become stressed less often and ward off stress before it even begins.

  4. karen parsons
    November 10 2008 at 5:48 pm #

    Hi Jill,

    Absolutely, it should be a way of life! Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.

    Kindest regards,


  5. yvonne
    July 1 2009 at 10:36 pm #

    Great site!!!!! Good health is very important with the high cost of medical coverage. We need to have a healther lifestyle by taking care of our health eating and exercising. I am a cancer survivor and I know. Our health is our greatest asset. Keep up the Good Work!!!!!

  6. Rev. Dr. Bush
    January 16 2010 at 1:03 pm #

    The physical body does not differentiate between happy stress and overwhelm. Stress is stress. We need to develop coping mechanisms in our daily life to avoid the harmful, physiological effects of stress.


  1. Live Without Work - April 17 2009

    7 Great Personal Development Blogs…

    For today’s post I’ve compiled a list of some must read personal development / productivity / life enhancing blogs that I frequently read myself! The list is in no particular order, but I have given 3 recommended readings per blog. Have a …

  2. Solopreneur Productivity :: Featured General :: 7 Great Personal Development Blogs - May 19 2009

    […] Fast and Effective Ways for Coping with Stress […]

  3. Coping with stress « FavPanel - June 23 2009

    […] it and reflect, and think you have the will and discipline to do something about that. Points of the article is don’t let stress becomes our way of living. What a good […]