New research may provide an answer to the age-old question: who’s smarter, men or women? According to Researcher James Flynn, for the first time, women are globally scoring on par or slightly higher on IQ tests than men.

Flynn explains that modern changes in opportunity and education have evened the playing field for the sexes. His study includes data from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Estonia and Argentina. However, Flynn hasn’t yet published that data– he’s holding out until a book release in September.

So, weather you’re a woman wanting to make sure you live up to the Great Expectations, or a Man trying to reclaim his title, consider these 5 tips for increasing brainpower.

    • Tip 1- Limit Email 

E-mail volume grows by 66% every year, and the constant distraction may be killing your concentration and productivity. As one inbox victim explains, “It’s so hard to stay focused. Everything bings and bongs and tweets at you, and you don’t think.”

    • Tip 2. Exercise

Put down that Rubic’s cube, and pick up a dumbbell. Exercise increases blood flow, clears the mind, and improves concentration. Hence, the time you spend exercising could lead to greater brainpower.

    • Tip 3. Read

Forget 50 Shades of Grey, reading an academically challenging book, such as a classic novel, will force you to think in more precise English. When picking up an old tomb, don’t be afraid of dense passages, or even to stop and look up a word if you don’t know it. Take your time, and you’ll soon learn that the effort pays off.

    • Tip 4. Sleep 

Nothing makes it harder to concentrate than sleep deprivation. Decades of sleep studies show that most of us operate best on 8 hours of sleep every night.

    • Tip 5. Reflect

Spending time alone in reflection gives you a chance organize your thoughts, and un-encumber your mind. Reflection may help you to prioritize what’s important, and defer what’s wasting your brain bandwidth.

Women and IQ

Question of the day: What have you tried to improve YOUR concentration and brainpower? What’s worked? What hasn’t? Let us know in the comments.

For Thriveworks,

I’m Anthony Centore