We all know that it is good to be physically fit, but it is just as important as we grow older to be mentally fit. A sharp, perceptive mind will be more alert to new opportunities and the way we choose to live can have a huge effect on our brains health now, and well into our future.
Research has shown the brain needs constant stimulation and challenges to maintain clarity and alertness. Here are some fun activities to exercise your brain and keep it out of the comfort zone.
Suggestions for your Brain Fitness Program
Puzzles: Completing puzzles uses the front part of your brain which controls planning, decision-making and memory; so playing with puzzles strengthens the connections in this area.
Crosswords: Increasing your vocabulary boosts the density of the cells in the part of the brain associated with verbal intelligence. Vocabulary and verbal abilities are used to determine IQ, so exercising this area will increase it.
Neuro-stimulation: From biofeedback to mind machines to brain enterainment CDs, there is a wealth of new technology dedicated to helping you achieve optimum brain fitness.
So what should your brain fitness program consist of?
There are at least 9 different types of intelligence. It is important to stimulate all 9 aspects so that you do not become over or under developed in any one area. You should exercise all areas of intelligence in order to keep your mind well rounded.
Suggestions for exercising your intelligence:
- Visual-Spatial: Practice visualization, drawing, photography, and use computer graphics software.
- Musical: Learn to play a musical instrument, write songs, jingles or poems.
- Bodily-Kinesthetic: Practice hand-eye coordination sports like ping-pong, go jogging or for walks, learn dance, martial arts, or yoga.
- Verbal: Crosswords, word games, comprehension exercises, journaling, storytelling, debating, learning foreign languages.
- Numerical/Logical: Puzzles (eg. sudoko), brain teasers, whodunnits, budget planning, problem solving, deductive thinking.
- Interpersonal-Social: Teach something, work in teams, partner on learning activities, and build your conversation skills.
- Intrapersonal-Intuitive: Meditation, listening to intuition, try and get a read on other people’s feelings, identify your core values and beliefs.
- Natural: Study nature, care for pets, look to nature for direct or indirect solutions to human problems.
- Spiritual: Develop spiritual values and principles, discuss beliefs, and contemplate the big questions.
The rewards of developing a brain fitness program are huge. Being a smarter, quicker thinker not only gives you an advantage over your peers, it helps you enjoy better mental health. Exercise your mind and you will become both happier and smarter.