If you are not working on yourself your brain functions are decreasing, and you will likely not become successful.

We normally shy away from learning something new, but in business and in life, it is necessary.

There is bad pain as well as good pain.

Bad pain is being in an abusive relationship and staying, thinking things are going to change. Good pain, would be learning something new. And whether you believe what you have learned plays a part in your future or not, I can tell you from experience it does.

But let’s not get off topic. What I am trying to drill into your skull is if you want success, keep your mind sharp and flexible. Billion dollar ideas come to those that are constantly improving and learning.

If you find it difficult to come up with ideas, and feel you are at a stand still, these seven steps will help you sharpen your mind to start a business or better your current one.

The first step is to?

1. Read. Obviously!

It’s been said if you wish to keep the poor where they are, hide the secret to success in a book.

Most people don’t read unless they are reading their Facebook timeline or gossiping about something meaningless. If life is short, and you only have one, shouldn’t you do all you can to enjoy it freely?

It’s difficult to read books. I should know, I hate it; but I know it keeps me mentally sharp and able to come up with new ideas easily.

A book a month is a great start. Slowly increase and it will come to you easily. Reading blogs is also a great start because a lot of what you find in a book could be found on someones blog.

2. Don’t be a hero, sleep enough!

Wow! Other posts, books, and speakers are telling me to go hard and do four-hour sleep and here comes this guy telling me to do the opposite, right?

People think because you carry the title entrepreneur, you’re supposed to be some guy that sleeps little and works plenty. but scientists are telling you, you need at least eight hours of sleep for proper brain function.

Sleeping four hours a day takes a toll on the mind, causing stress, anxiety, and lack of focus. You can’t be mentally sharp or do your best when you are running on 20% battery.

Don’t try and sleep less because other people are doing it. Most of them are keeping busy rather than getting things done. It’s called the high of keeping busy, where people get excited because they are jumbling things around and getting little done.

Get six to nine hours of sleep and let your brain recover so it can better serve you.

3. Practice mental sharpness

Note: meditation provides great benefits but only with the right guidance. There are negatives for everything.

A mind that constantly wonders and held on stress will not do you any good. The mind is powerful, yes, but you have to master it first to get the benefits.

Life is fast paced, so your mind is trying to keep up with it and in doing so stresses itself out.

Just as you should take the proper amount of time to rest and read, you should take the time to practice calm.

You do that by meditating. Monks are not the only ones who do this, many successful entrepreneurs do it as well. They know ten minutes a day of calm meditating has lifelong benefits.

Mediating brings peace of mind, lowers stress, mental focus and emotional intelligence. So not only do you sharpen your mind, you also get to work on other parts of your life that push your success forward and all under ten minutes.

An alternative, though not as powerful for those that don’t like to meditate is to go for a walk and get away from everything.

4. Find something new

A mind that is constantly learning is always growing. Learning something new daily is a great way to test your mind and inspire growth. The mind feels challenged and builds new neurons when it learns something new.

5. Eat smart foods

If you eat fatty foods, you will become… fat. But your looks would be the least of your problems. Eating unhealthy is a snowball effect.

First, you will put on weight. Putting on weight lowers self-esteem, puts greater pressure on your heart, increases stress (likely hood of depression) lowers metabolism and slows oxygen carried to the brain. No oxygen to the brain lowers brain functions.

That’s just a small list. So, if you want to be mentally sharp you have to watch what you put into your body. Fish, berries and nuts will help with boosting your metabolism and increase brain function.

If you’ve notice it’s been hard to absorb information, one of the first place to look is what you are eating.

Smart food, sharp.

Dumb food, slow mind.

6. Stay fit

Your body works together with the mind, you cannot work on one and ignore the other. An overweight body will give out early and cause your brain to be sluggish.

Staying in shape makes it easier to stay sharp because that’s less stress and sickness you have to worry about when you are putting the other steps into action.

Don’t worry, 15 mins a day is all you need.

7. Actually want it

Saying you want to work on yourself so you can achieve success is one thing. Words are cheap. That’s why I have a rule, I don’t believe it until I see it. I don’t care how sincere, passionate or how you always stick to your word, all that means nothing to me.

You want to keep your mind alert and on the prize; prove it to me.

Do that now by leaving a comment about which step you will start on first then come back and add another comment when you start on the next one.