The way I use my brain and the way peole in general use their brains is something that I have been given a sudden clarity on.
I have always had difficulty thinking hard about things, and I believe it is because of this that I have not been able to excel in academia. I have always tended to use my brain like a muscle, that is; when I want it to work harder, i squeeze it in an attempt to make it work better.
It is kind of like someone going to pick up something heavy that they thought was substantially lighter. They exert a force equal to the weight, until they realise that it is heavier than they thought. Then they increase the force in their muscles to overcome the weight and lift the item. This is what i thought I had to do with my brain.
I am sure it does not help however, and in fact I think that it actually has a negative effect on the ability of the brain to work well. So if i'm struggling to understand something, I should not do what I have always done and exert more force on the muscles surrounding my head and neck and ultimately brain. This will not help, rather I should do my best to try and relax and let the thoughts flow freely and quickly.
Perhaps the key to becoming closer to genius is to get the brain into the best state for it to function optimally, perhaps this is what cleaver people already do? It is always said that clever ones don't have to think about things; they just konw them. Conversly, the image of a stupid person trying to squeeze the answer to a maths question out of his head is very well known to me.
The brain is not a muscle, it will not respond well to a build up of pressure surrounding it.
I do feel that it is instinctive of people to use their brains in the same way they use a muscle, it's a learned trait that comes from how we operate in the world of objects. It does not translate well to the world of thoughts however, where a clear pathway and strong connection is more important than the force required to fulfill a connection.
Given my philosophy of how a body works in this world, the thoughts originate from elsewhere anyway, the brain is just a store of information not the processor and originator of ideas. Consciousness does not reside in the human skull.