How to Become Smarter: 9 Hacks to Improve Your Intelligence

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Let's be honest—one of the top personal goals that people make is to improve their intelligence. There's a common misconception that you're only as smart as your genetics allow. It's true that genetics play a role into your base intelligence, after all, there are child prodigies. However, there are a few things that you can do to easily boost your own intelligence.

Various studies have been conducted to determine what exactly helps boost intelligence. From eating the right foods to taking time to meditate daily, there are simple steps you can take to become smarter. Here are the top nine hacks to help you achieve your dream of increased intelligence.

1. Become a bookworm

There's a reason why some of the brightest minds in the universe are bookworms. Reading is not only a relaxing activity that helps you fight stress, it's also an activity that increases your brain capacity. Stretching this mental capacity makes it possible for you to learn more. Additionally, reading can help improve your vocabulary by exposing you to words with which you may not already be familiar. Some of the best writers maintained their skills by reading a book a week.

1. Become a bookworm

In addition to stretching your brain capacity and introducing you to new vocabulary, reading is the best way to gain knowledge. For example, how would we be able to learn about historical events if we didn't have books to read? Sure, there are primary accounts of the tales, but those are few and far between.

Regularly reading is one of the easiest ways that you can boost your intelligence, and the best news is that it doesn't matter what type of reading you do. So, grab your favorite book or the newspaper and get to reading away!

2. Cut back on frivolous online activity

We're all guilty of unproductively spending time online. When we're bored, we instinctively look to our phones to kill the time. If you had to think about it, how many hours a day do you spend time on social media looking at other people's lives? You probably spend at least an hour doing this task, but chances are you probably spend more than that.

2. Cut back on frivolous online activity

Now, imagine how much you could learn if, instead of opening up Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or TikTok when you're bored, you head to online news stations and spend that idle time reading up on current events. Or, what if you spent that time reading industry publications or training resources? Cutting back on frivolous online activity and replacing it with something more productive can help you greatly increase your overall intelligence. And, it hardly requires any additional effort on your part.

3. Properly care for your body

If you're not properly taking care of your body, your brain won't receive what it needs to grow and continue to develop. Remember, your brain acts like a muscle. What this means is that you need to consume the right foods and exercise it in order to grow it, just like you would any muscle in your body.

There are plenty of studies tying physical fitness to mental fitness, and there are also proven connections between a healthy, well-balanced diet and higher IQ scores. Moreover, scientists have discovered that vigorous exercise improves your body's production of neurotransmitters, which can lead to increased production of dopamine. Dopamine is responsible for lower stress, higher energy and increased focus, which means that active people enjoy all these benefits.

To boost your intelligence, try to exercise for 30 minutes a day and eat a diet that is rich in lean meats, fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

3. Properly care for your body

4. Make time to journal daily

If you really want to expand your knowledge, this tip is for you! It's been proven that it's one thing to hear or read something, but that you won't retain it as well as you would have if you wrote it down. That's why it's so important that you take five minutes a night to write a journal entry of what you learned that day. Then, you can reflect on these entries and identify areas in which you can continue to grow your knowledge.

5. Work out your brain

You've probably seen commercials for brain-boosting games. By working out your brain with the help of strategy-based games like chess and bridge, or by doing puzzles, you can work toward improving your intelligence.

5. Work out your brain

The only way to grow your brain is by pushing it beyond its routine and comfort zone. Consider purchasing a puzzle app on your smartphone, doing a crossword puzzle or sudoku puzzle, or playing a game of chess each day to really work out your brain and reap the intelligence-boosting effects.

6. Use mind mapping

When you're trying to grow your knowledge and boost your intelligence, it's important to consider the perks of using mind mapping. Mind mapping is a tool and strategy that you can do to ensure that you fully understand a topic and uncover perhaps the most important elements of said topic at a mere glance.

Mind mapping can help you boost your intelligence through helping you learn about a wide breadth of topics. Additionally, mind mapping can help you enhance your critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Developing and honing these skills will help you further your overall intelligence, reasoning skills and logic.

So, while it might not seem important to practice mind mapping initially, the contrary is actually true. Through this strategy, you'll not only learn more about topics, but you'll be able to learn quicker and realize patterns and trends with ease.

7. Surround yourself with other intelligent people

The people that you surround yourself with will have an effect on your overall intelligence, whether you realize it or not. Intelligent peers will help inspire you to strive to learn more about as much as you can, but they will also challenge you and your beliefs. Regular discourse is essential to growing your overall knowledge. You won't better yourself if you're surrounded by people who don't challenge you or push you to become better.

7. Surround yourself with other intelligent people

Additionally, having regular intellectual conversations can help you learn about things with which you're not familiar, which will help you expand your knowledge even further. So, look for a network of intelligent people and immerse yourself in that network.

It's not just you who will reap these rewards. By nature of having intellectual conversations, you can help others become smarter, too. Explaining yourself to others will push you to find the words to succinctly articulate the knowledge you have, which will undoubtedly exercise your brain, boosting your intelligence.

8. Don't fall into a routine

Your brain grows only when it faces new challenges and activities. Think about it, when you learn a new physical skill, it's usually difficult in the beginning. However, as you continue to practice and work at that skill, your brain learns the steps necessary for success. After a while, it becomes easier and easier to execute that skill.

Keeping your brain on its toes, so to speak, is the best way to boost your intelligence. Spontaneity through changing up your daily routine or even trying one new thing every month, will help you keep learning and in turn, help you become smarter overall. For example, try taking a different way into work each day without the help of your GPS. Or, try a new restaurant once a month. Incorporating variety into your daily routine will force you to use critical thinking skills you may not otherwise use.

9. Challenge yourself at work

This has been alluded to above, but your brain adapts quickly to routines, and once it has learned those routines, switches into autopilot mode. There's a good chance that when you're at work, there's a lot of tasks that you do one way without even thinking twice about them, because that's how you've always done those tasks.

9. Challenge yourself at work

While you more than likely do a good job on those tasks, have you ever wondered if any processes could be improved upon or streamlined? Even if you haven't yet thought of this, it's something that you should consider. You will not continue to grow personally or professionally unless you forbid yourself to fall into a routine.

Your brain does its best learning when it is challenged continuously and when it is learning to do things in new ways or taking in new knowledge. When you're at work, think outside the box, learn more about other teammates and how they work, and never stop learning.


We hope that we've made it clear that your base intelligence isn't all you have. You can grow your intelligence and become smarter with work and dedication, but it doesn't have to be extremely difficult. So long as you set your mind toward achieving your goal of becoming smarter, incorporating even half of these intelligence-boosting hacks will result in significant progress. It will take work, but anything worth having and achieving in life does. You will not regret taking the steps necessary to become a smarter individual!