If your mind is sharp and active you can enjoy life whatever age you are – your senior years do not have to be associated with memory loss and fuzzy thinking. The good news is you can “train” your brain whatever age you are to be sharper and more effective. While you will sometimes forget things or have a “senior moment” it doesn’t mean your life has to be affected by cognitive decline. Start training your brain today with these ideas.
- Crosswords and word puzzles: Studies show that completing crosswords, word puzzles, Sudoku, and other mental challenges on a regular basis helps to prevent dementia and memory problems as you age. You can also find computer programs and apps that help give your brain a workout while you’re waiting in line at the store, or waiting in the car to pick up your grandchildren.
- Classes and education: Learning doesn’t stop at school – sign up for classes, learn a new skill, volunteer for a new project at work, or enjoy doing things you wouldn’t normally do, like visiting an art gallery or reading non-fiction. As you learn, your brain develops and your memory improves.
- Doing things differently: Arranging your house and your life so that everything is easy and you follow the same routine may not be the best thing for your brain. Sometimes you need to do things differently in order to work different parts of the brain and fire-up new pathways. For example, if you always drive the exact same way to work, take a different street. Or brush your teeth with your other hand. Walk backwards in the park, switch your cups to a different shelf, and make sure that you don’t get stuck in a rut.
- Healthy diet and exercise: Keeping your body healthy will help your mind function even as you get older. Eat plenty of green leafy vegetables and wholegrains, add fish to your weekly menu, and workout three times a week. You should also get plenty of sleep in order to retain memories and help process new ideas and facts.
- Meditation and relaxation: Stress is the enemy of a healthy, sharp mind. Spend a few minutes every day in quiet meditation or simply sitting still in silence. If you suffer from stress reduce your levels by taking yoga classes, walking outside, or enjoying a relaxing hobby.