Keeping fit by keeping your brain healthy, six fit tips from Margaret Martin author of Your Chatter Matters.
When you say the word fit or fitness, what comes to mind? Most of us immediately think of exercising the body. Do you ever think of keeping your mind fit? Probably not.
With this month’s topic of keeping fit, I thought I would explore what it takes to keep your mind fit and here are some suggestions:
- Learn a new skill or hobby. When you begin something new, most often it will be challenging which will give your brain a bit of a boost and open new pathways in the brain. If you have a hobby that you can try new patterns or different designs that cause you to think more rather than just doing the same old thing.
- Change your routine. Drive a different route on your way to work or other places you go, you may make new discoveries – a new restaurant to try, a shop you want visit, a beautiful park; the possibilities are endless. Organize your day differently – exercise first thing in the day, rotate the time you shower with the time you eat breakfast, eat breakfast food for dinner and dinner food for breakfast (your children will probably get a kick out of that) and so on.
- Learn new technology – for me, staying up-to-date with social media, the software that I use and the latest iphone technology will probably keep my mind sharp for a long time.
- Move your body – moving your body in new exercises such as yoga, dance, skipping (remember how much fun that was when we were children?), walking backwards, stretching and more. It’s pretty easy to find a way to do the suggestions here, put some music on and dance and sing.
- Use all your senses daily – sounds simple right?
Smell – Make an effort to smell different items during the day – an apple, oranges, the soap you use, a candle, cooking garlic in butter or oil – you get the picture.
Hearing – Listen, really listen to your surroundings – turn off the tv and music, hear what silence sounds like. As you listen to music try identifying which instruments are playing.
Taste – pay attention as you eat today, enjoy the flavors of what you are eating; try something new – a new flavor of ice cream, that weird looking fruit at the market and experience it fully.
Sight – Really look at your surroundings in your home or office, is what you see pleasant or there adjustments / repairs / rearranging that needs to be done? See the real beauty of nature as you move about during the day – did you ever notice the beauty of the bark on that tree, how glorious the clouds are today?
Touch – pause to feel the softness of your sheets, a sweater, your pet; notice how rough a blanket might be, the peel of an orange, texture of different yarns; put your feet in the sand or dirt and notice how comforting it can be.
Intuition – your 6th sense – pay attention to your gut, ideas that pop up, feelings that you have indicating you might want to do something or call someone.
- Self-Talk – be sure and keep the negative self-talk away. If you remember the steps in my book, The Chatter that Matters – Your Words ARE Your Power, when you have negative self-talk (chatter) thoughts, change them into words that empower or encourage you.
I’m sure that you will think of additional ideas of how to keep your mind fit, if so please feel free to share them with me, I’ll be happy to credit your ideas when sharing them.
Margaret Martin © 2016