If you want to have a long and productive life and career, you need to pay attention to both physical and mental fitness. Both will change as you get older but significant decline isn’t automatic. In the same way that you can maintain or improve your physical fitness, you can also maintain or even boost brain function and prevent cognitive decline. Many experts make it clear that the two go hand-in-hand. In this article, we’ll provide some simple tips for keeping your brain and body youthful as you get older.
Get Varied Mental Stimulation
Mentally stimulating activities can support new connections between nerve cells and possibly even contribute to the development of new cells. There are several things you can do to
strengthen your brain function, including reading, doing crossword puzzles, taking courses, drawing and painting. Research also shows that learning new skills can help to improve memory.
Learn a New Language
Studies show that being bilingual has cognitive benefits. Not only can speaking more than one language boost your memory, but your visual-spatial skills can improve, and you may even find yourself becoming more creative. Achieving fluency in another language can also make it easier to switch between different tasks, a skill that’s highly valuable in the workplace. No matter how old you are, you can reap the benefits of learning a new language.
Get Adequate Physical Exercise
You need to get moving! Physical movement helps both your body and your brain. Regular exercise sends more oxygen-rich blood to the parts of the brain that control thought and also contributes to the development of new nerve cells. This helps to improve mental performance. Exercise also assists in controlling blood pressure, blood sugar, and mental stress, thereby creating anenvironment for good brain health.
According to Christopher Bergland, a retired athlete and author of “The Athlete’s Way: Training Your Mind and Body to Experience the Joy of Exercise,” modern society causes both the body and the mind to “short-circuit.” He argues that technology can result in the atrophy of the brain and body, but daily exercise can help to counteract the negative effects.
Watch What You Eat
If you’re feeding your body the wrong foods, don’t be surprised if your brain feels foggy or your memory isn’t as sharp as it used to be. You’re less likely to become cognitively impaired if you eat a Mediterranean-style diet consisting of vegetables, fruits, fish, nuts, plant proteins, and unsaturated fats. Also, your diet can help to keep your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol at bay, thereby promoting good overall health and keeping dementia at bay.
Strengthen Your Social Networks
Having a strong social support system can improve your mental health. Seek to deepen your relationship with family and friends or forge new bonds as you seek to keep your mind sharp. Not only will these individuals support you during times of stress, but they’ll offer companionship on an everyday basis. Research shows that inadequate social support can contribute to loneliness and depression, which alter brain function.
Listen to Music or Play an Instrument
A fun and easy way to boost your creativity and brainpower could be to simply put on some music. Listening to feel-good music can help you to be more innovative, so if you need to come up with new ideas, don’t sit in absolute silence. You can give yourself more of a challenge by picking up an instrument, even if it’s for the first time. Regardless of what you may have heard, you can learn to play the violin, piano, or any other instrument at any age.
Believe That You Can Keep Your Mind Sharp
This may sound like a strange tip. However, according to an article published by Harvard Health Publishing, buying into stereotypes about aging can contribute to poor memory. The article said learners who are middle-aged and older perform worse on memory tasks when they are exposed to negative myths about memory and getting older. However, people who are exposed to positive messages perform better.
If you believe that losing your memory is an unavoidable part of advancing in age, you’ll be less likely to try to improve or maintain your memory skills. This puts you at greater risk of cognitive decline. You’re more likely to keep your mind sharp if you believe you can improve your mental skills and you work on it.
Age Is Just A Number When You’re Mentally Fit
If you want to improve concentration, memory, and overall mental function, you must focus on brain health. When you make the necessary mental, physical and social changes, you’ll boost your cognitive skills, challenge yourself and lead a more enriching life. Mental fitness will allow you to continue in your career, be there for your family and enjoy life a lot more. Take the first step today!
Contact WiseForce Advisors to get your career in good health at firstname.lastname@example.org.