8 Brain Activities to Get Attendees’ Minds Moving

Start meetings with one of these fun brain-boosting activities

Have you ever been excited to jump into a creative or brainstorming meeting only to find that your attendees are sleepy or not mentally ready to tackle the big tasks at hand?

Add these eight brain-stimulating activities to your meeting agenda to fend off any potential meeting lag—and inspire new ideas:

Write and draw with the nondominant hand. This will help attendees focus on different aspects of their motor skills and might even help them approach tasks and problems differently.
 
Count to 100; then reverse. Have people silently count to 100. Easy enough, right? Next, really challenge their brainpower by having them count backward from 100. This may seem simple, but it will be enough to clear the morning cloudiness.
 
Identify one noun for each letter of the alphabet. This activity can be done individually or as a group (e.g., A: acrobat, B: bowl, C: coconut).

 
Play with puzzles. Games and activities can be great brain boosters. Set out a variety of jigsaw puzzles, crossword puzzles or games, like chess, to get attendees’ minds working. A brief video game break can be helpful here, too.

Cut off the use of one sense. Just momentarily, of course! For example, ask participants to solve a problem or complete a task with a partner without speaking. They will have to rely on hand gestures and body movements to communicate.

Take an established idea, then flip it on its head. Write your favorite idea as a headline, then take out two or three keywords and have attendees reword it. For example, “Event Planning Ideas That Boost Networking” might become “Meeting Planning Strategies That Improve Attendee Connections.” The change in perspective will open attendees’ eyes to a new way of thinking—and new ideas. 

Start with a question. Throw out a question to your meeting attendees, and set a timer for two minutes. Have them write down as many answers—realistic or not—on sticky notes. When the timer dings, have guests place their ideas on the walls to share. 

Do a breathing exercise. Deep breathing can bring more oxygen to your brain. So, in the midst of an intense brainstorm session, take a timeout to breathe and refresh.