Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 11

SRINI PIL LAY, M.D.

SCIENCE OF
LEARNING

THE AGILE BRAIN:
HOW YOU CAN LEARN TO DO LESS
TO ADAPT AT THE SPEED OF CHANGE
When people have to develop "learning
agility," they imagine that they
somehow have to acquire superhuman
multitasking skills or an unusual knack
for adapting without skipping a beat.
Just the thought of that can be
exhausting. Instead, you have to make
adjustments to the way you use your
brain in order to work smarter - not
harder. So, how do you optimize your
brain to learn and adapt at the speed
of change?

Small strategic efficiency changes
can help you become more agile and
develop a supertasking brain.

Developing perspective: A little strategy
time never hurt anyone. Many people
spring out of bed and rush off to work,
getting their to-do lists together as
fast as they can. While this may sound
efficient, it often isn't. When there are
too many things in your brain, you
develop a brain traffic bottleneck.
All of a sudden, everything slows
down. That initial rush leads to
diminishing returns.

Did you know that our minds wander
47% of the time during the day?
We need to learn to mind-wander
strategically. For instance, a five- to
15-minute nap can give you up to
three hours of clarity. Doodling during
a conference call may improve your
memory by up to 29%.

ADJUST THE WAY
YOU USE YOUR BRAIN
IN ORDER TO WORK
SMARTER - NOT
HARDER.
It helps to sit down at the beginning
of the day to see if you can arrange
your tasks efficiently. Can you combine
two meetings into one? Can you turn
an hour-long meeting into a 30-minute
meeting? Can you schedule the more
challenging tasks of the day to a time
when you have the greatest energy?

Conserving brain energy: With the
demands you face to adapt to constant
change, you might think that focus is
the order of the day. However, as I
point out in my book "Tinker Dabble
Doodle Try," you must build unfocus
times into your day to refuel your brain
and gain the energy to adapt.

One way to do this is to practice
positive constructive daydreaming
- scheduling 15 to 20 minutes in
your day when your brain would be
naturally depleted. However, you can't
just sit at your desk. Take a walk, do
some gardening or try knitting. Then,
imagine something positive like going
apple-picking or cozying up to a good
movie. Then, let your mind wander.
This will boost your creativity and
refresh your brain. The brain's default
mode network comes on when you
stop focusing and puts puzzle pieces
together, allowing you to discover new
ways of becoming agile.
Connecting to your psychological center
of gravity (COG): Your psychological
COG is your north star. It is your guiding

light when you feel lost or rushed.
When you are overwhelmed by the
changes you have to make, reset
to your psychological COG. It's like
training your abdominal muscles.
One key way to do this is to reconnect
with your sense of purpose. This is not
some external goal, but the activities
that make you feel you are flourishing.
When you do, you activate your brain's
reward system, and you get the energy
edge you need to hold steady.
Think of a possibility that is not yet a
reality, and commit to believing that you
are sufficient to deliver on promises
that you have not yet delivered on.
This does not require you to be sure or
right every time. It's a choice that you
make to let possibility be your guide.
Ask yourself, "What two things can I
say 'no' to?" Offload things that drain
you - the barely satisfying friendship,
the task that you hate to do, the
compromise you're being asked to
make that you don't actually have
to make. When you do, you gain the
ability to do more satisfying and
motivating things.
When it comes to learning agility and
optimizing your brain, less is more.
Dr.
Srini
Pillay
is
the
CEO
of NeuroBusiness Group. He is also
assistant professor (part-time) at
Harvard Medical School and teaches
in the executive education programs
at Harvard Business School and Duke
CE. Email Srini.

T R A I N I N G I N DUSTR Y MAGAZ INE -AGILE LEARNING 2020 I WWW. T RAININGINDU S T RY . C OM/ MAGAZ I NE

| 11


https://www.trainingindustry.com/magazine

Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020

Building an Adaptable Workforce
Table of Contents
3 Key Technology Principles for Integrated Employee Learning Experiences
The Agile Brain: How You Can Learn to Do Less to Adapt at the Speed of Change
Learnership: Preparing Employees for the New Learning Landscape
Developing Range Versus Demonstrating Agility
Agile Learning Strategies for the Modern Learner
Clicking for Completion: How to Overcome the Hyperactive E-learner
Cutting through the Clutter: How to Curate Content to Drive High-Impact Courses
Skills Gaps Rise as Organizations Ignore Workforce Training Preferences
Creating a Learning Strategy for Change Using the Skills of Improvisation
5 Keys to Building Change Resilience for You and Your Team
Workflow-enabled Learning: Meeting the Needs of the Modern Learner
Meeting the Challenge: Training for Customer Experience Excellence the Airbnb Way
Adaptive Learning for the Global Enterprise
How to Leverage Technology in Building Learning Agility
Becoming an Agile Learning Organization
It's Time to Prioritize Learning
Guild Education Now Valued at $1 Billion, Helps Organizations Upskill Employees Through Education Benefits
Company News
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 1
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 2
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Building an Adaptable Workforce
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 4
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Table of Contents
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 6
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 7
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 8
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 3 Key Technology Principles for Integrated Employee Learning Experiences
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 10
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - The Agile Brain: How You Can Learn to Do Less to Adapt at the Speed of Change
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 12
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Learnership: Preparing Employees for the New Learning Landscape
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 14
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Developing Range Versus Demonstrating Agility
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Agile Learning Strategies for the Modern Learner
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 17
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 18
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 19
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Clicking for Completion: How to Overcome the Hyperactive E-learner
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 21
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 22
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 23
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Cutting through the Clutter: How to Curate Content to Drive High-Impact Courses
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 25
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Skills Gaps Rise as Organizations Ignore Workforce Training Preferences
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 27
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 28
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 29
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Creating a Learning Strategy for Change Using the Skills of Improvisation
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 31
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 32
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 33
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 5 Keys to Building Change Resilience for You and Your Team
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 35
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 36
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 37
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 38
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 39
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 40
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 41
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Meeting the Challenge: Training for Customer Experience Excellence the Airbnb Way
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 43
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Adaptive Learning for the Global Enterprise
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 45
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 46
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - How to Leverage Technology in Building Learning Agility
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 48
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Becoming an Agile Learning Organization
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 50
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - It's Time to Prioritize Learning
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Guild Education Now Valued at $1 Billion, Helps Organizations Upskill Employees Through Education Benefits
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - Company News
Training Industry Magazine - January/February 2020 - 54
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20200910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20200708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20200506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20200304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20200102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20191112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20190910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20190708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20190506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20190304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20190102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20181112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20180910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20180708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20180506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20180304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20180102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20171112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20170910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20170708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20170506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20170304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20171112_se
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_20161112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2016fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2016summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2016sales
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2016spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2016winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2015outsourcing
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2015fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2015summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2015leadership
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2015spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2015winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2014fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2014summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2014spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2014winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2013fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2013summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2013spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2013winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2012fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2012summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2012spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2012winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2011fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2011summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2011spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2011winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2010fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2010summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2010spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2010winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2009fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2009summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2009spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2009winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2008fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2008summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2008spring
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com