1) Learn Something New
The number one way to keep your brain in shape is to challenge it with new activities and learning. Step out of your comfort zone. Scientists have discovered that this creates new neural pathways and cells in your brain. It also improves memory.
The great thing about this is it's fun. Venture into something you're not familiar with and exercise your brain while gaining new experiences and knowledge.
- Learn an instrument.
- Become a skilled rock climber.
- Camp out in the wilderness.
- Take an art class.
- Study astronomy.
There's no limit to what you can do. If your heart is racing with anticipation all the better.
2) Do Things in A Different Way
Don't have time to shake things up right now? Then do your daily routine differently. Add little changes.
- Switch the order of how you do things.
- Do everything with your left hand if you're right-handed.
- Read everything upside-down on your phone and feel your neurons activating.
- Drive to work a different way.
- Try a new ethnic restaurant or cuisine at home.
- Take a weekend drive to a new destination.
3) Make Time For Socializing
Spending time with friends and family, as well as acquaintances and new people exercises the brain. We can talk to ourselves and have it all figured out, but as soon as we bring someone else into the equation, things start stirring up. You've got another mind in the mix with their own take on things.
Being with other people stimulates our mind. A study by Rush University Medical Center revealed that an active social life decreases the rate of memory loss. You're also more likely to laugh with others and laughter:
- Activates many regions of the brain.
- Releases endorphins that make you feel good.
- Boosts your immune system.
- Changes your perspective.
- Reduces stress.
All of it is important to your brain functioning optimally.
4) Play Mental Games
Not the mental games some play in their relationships! We're talking about those challenging apps, word games, eye-hand coordination feats that make your noggin work. Though scientists still debate the benefits of electronic games to increase mental power, anything that requires you to push yourself mentally is good.
However, with all the time we spend on our devices already, the best thing you can do is keep nurturing and developing your intellect. The more meaningful it is to you, the more you're apt to keep going and hunger for more.
5) Keep Exercising and Eating Healthy
If you're already on this track, fantastic because it's just as important as anything else you can do for your brain. Your head, and what's inside it, is part of your physical body and everything you do to your body affects your brain.
Here's what consistent exercise does:
- Creates new brain cells.
- Uplifts your mood.
- Increases the oxygen your brain receives and needs.
- Gives your brain a workout as you master new skills and activities.
- Wards off health problems like diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and triglycerides, all known to lead to memory decline and dementia, along with all the other problems it causes.
Eating a diet rich in Omega-3's like fish, nuts, seeds, avocados, and berries, as well as plenty more fruits and vegetables, feed your brain the nutrients it needs to thrive. In contrast, diets high in saturated fats and refined sugar are known to impair brain function over time.
Meditation is no longer set aside for spiritual gurus and yoga enthusiasts only. Studies are confirming its benefits. Maybe that's why corporations are starting to utilize the advantages of meditation with their staff.
You don't have to sit in a full-lotus position with your fingers resting in circle shapes. Ways to meditate vary. You can do it in a chair at your desk, or in your parked car. Whatever works. Even a two-minute session brings positive results.
What does meditation do for your brain?
- Increases prefrontal area of the brain, and thickness of the corpus callosum which contributes to more connection between brain cells.
- Helps depression, anxiety, chronic pain, diabetes, high blood pressure all affecting the brain negatively.
- Stimulates creativity and reasoning.
- Reduces stress. Chronic stress damages brain cells and changes the Hippocampus that helps form new memories.
- Makes it easier to sleep. Most people are sleep deprived these days. Unfortunately, memory, creativity, critical thinking and problem-solving abilities all get compromised. Deep sleep actually enhances memory capability.
You'll find yourself looking forward to those relaxing minutes that help keep your mind and memory sharp.
If you're considering meditation, a fitness class, or starting an exercise plan with a personal coach, take a look at our class schedule or contact us at Trilogy today.