Neuroscience — it sounds like an art best practised by medics in a hospital, but it is coming out of wards into the workplace to influence practical ways of honing brain power in the canteen, boardroom and bedroom. The physical connection between the brain and the body means mental efficiency can be improved through sleep, nutrition, hydration and exercise. Planning to avoid wasting mental resources on unimportant issues also helps. "If you do not have these things right, you cannot do brain agility, emotional intelligence and creativity and you will struggle with stress and resilience," says neuroscientist Dr Tara Swart. London-based Swart is helping several South African companies improve leadership skills by applying neuroscientific principles. In May, she will run a day-long Neuroscience for Leadership course in Johannesburg, teaching simple ways to boost brain power. "It is particularly aimed at managers and leaders, but I strongly believe everybody is a leader," Swart says. Pe...

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