Now days, obesity is becoming a cause of concern for all of us. We are all busy spending our time, money and effort to lose those extra pounds and boost our self esteem. It is also done to look good and be accepted socially. In the midst of all this, we are forgetting that our biological clock is also ticking. Our emotional or mental health is as important as our physical health.
It is good to exercise our brain everyday like we exercise our body. It is important to keep mentally fit and keep exercising for the brain as well. There are various ways to tickle those grey cells and some exercises for staying mentally fit are-
Keep a hobby that needs us to use our brain. This can be something like learning to play a musical instrument. This can be entertaining as well as stimulating the brain.
Quizzes, puzzles, sudoku, jig-saw puzzles, cards, crosswords and board games are some of the good ways to keep you busy in a constructive way.
Keeping positive thoughts is also important for a healthy mind. It strengthens the brain.
Learn- It you visit your local university, you can find out about the courses they offer. You can take advantage of these offerings and have the access to all the university facilities
You can take an activity break. These are small breaks during which you get to learn something in new places. There can also be study tours. The duration of such courses can be 2-8 days. There is a huge range of subjects to choose from.
Stress plays a very important role in our physical and mental well being. When the stress accumulates, one becomes more and more susceptible to illness, emotional problems and behavioral disorders. It is best to find out the cause of stress and work towards eliminating the source.
Cardiovascular fitness leads to not only physical fitness but also prevents breakdown of brain cells that usually happens as we grow old. This kind of exercise program reduces the likelihood of mental illnesses such as Alzheimer’s disease.
Taking part in activities that require high level of concentration or social interaction may improve the person’s ability in verbal memory, mathematical reasoning and verbal fluency.
Relax. Do whatever helps you do so. This can be reading, talking to a friend, riding your bike or just solving some puzzles. Make time for yourself even if it is just half an hour.
Everything that you eat has some effect on your body, called chemical effect. Food is broken down into elements that raise or drop our blood sugar. That is why, some foods can affect our mood and brain. Try to eat foods that have positive effects on our bodies and mind.
As we age, keeping track of our shopping budget can become more and more difficult. Try to these simple additions and subtractions on day to day basis.
Maintain a good social circle. People who have good social network live longer and are physically healthier as compared to socially isolated.
Watch the numbers- Your lifestyle and dietary habits not only affect your physical well being, but can also decide your age related cognitive skills. Managing numbers such as cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar and weight has become very important.
Get enough sleep. Eight hours of sleep is required by most adults, even when we age. Lack of sleep can have negative impact on the overall quality of life causing lack of concentration and memory.
Try to break a routine activity in an unexpected way. This could include taking a new route, changing the place to shop, rearranging the house or office etc.
Try to use additional senses. For example, sitting quietly and communicating through visual cues or taking shower with the eyes closed.
Challenge yourself. The best way to do this is to change the hand you usually use for your daily activities. For example, if you are right handed, control the pen with your left hand. When we do this, a large network of connections involved with writing with your left hand which we rarely use get activated on the right side of the brain. This poses an engaging task for the brain which is interesting, fun, challenging and at the same time can be quite frustrating as well.
If you follow these simple, yet exciting exercises for staying mentally fit and challenge your brain on a daily basis, you’ll very soon find yourself to be more imaginative, creative and mentally healthy.