Despite the many conveniences we now enjoy because of technology, once in a while we might want to forgo some of them just to keep our brains sharp. “Doing things the hard way” is one of the tips for increasing your intelligence suggested by the Institute for Ethics & Emerging Technologies.
Photo by Ramunas Geciauskas.
Some examples of technologies we might rely on too much are GPS, autocorrect and spellcheck. IEET writes:
My sense of direction is terrible. I get lost all the time. So when GPS came along, I was thanking my lucky stars. But you know what? After using GPS for a short time, I found that my sense of direction was worse. If I failed to have it with me, I was even more lost than before. So when I moved to Boston-the city that horror movies and nightmares about getting lost are modelled after-I stopped using GPS.
I won’t lie-it was painful as hell. […]But-in time, I started learning my way around, due to the sheer amount of practice I was getting at navigation using only my brain and a map. I began to actually get a sense of where things in Boston were, using logic and memory, not GPS. […]It was like I had graduated from navigational awareness school.
Sometimes we need to cripple our technology to boost productivity, and sometimes laying off of it is also good for our strengthening our cognitive skills.
In a similar vein of doing things the hard way as brain exercise, Peter Markovic writes on Pick the Brain that you can try reversing your left hand and right hand tasks, which will actively stimulate the brain.
More ways to increase your intelligence include seeking novelty, challenging yourself, thinking creatively, and networking. Hit up the full article for examples of these techniques.