Brain exercises can improve mental fitness, stimulate memory and lead to a good time. Just as you work out your body, you also need to exercise your brain to keep it sharp. Here are ten fun and creative ways to exercise your mind:
1. Play board games
Playing board games with your family, friends, peers or colleagues can be lots of fun and can keep you thinking quickly. Chess, chequers, Monopoly, charades, Pictionary, 30 Seconds, card games and dominoes can improve your problem-solving skills, concentration and general knowledge.
2. Learn a new word every day
Word-a-day calendars are a convenient way to learn a new word every day. You can subscribe to these calendars online, buy a physical one, or just use a dictionary. This exercise will expand your vocabulary and can help you grasp new concepts.
3. Do puzzles
Puzzles are the perfect brain exercise for practising visual thinking. Jigsaw puzzles, crosswords, Sudoku and Rubik’s cubes are all examples of challenging puzzles that can contribute to your mental fitness.
4. Journal regularly
Writing about your day, life, or topics that interest you can be good for your memory, thinking processes and language abilities. You can do this in a diary or online in the form of a blog. It can also become an enjoyable creative hobby.
5. Learn a new language or instrument
Learning a new language helps you process information in a new way. It’s best to learn a new language around people who speak it, but books or taking a course can be helpful too. Learning an instrument, like guitar or piano, also helps stimulate a new part of your brain and can be fun and rewarding.
6. Memorise lists
What you ate today, what you did today, grocery lists, to-do lists, study notes – these are all options for what you could memorise. Write down a list and see if you can recall all of its contents.
7. Read out loud
Reading, in itself, is one of the best brain exercises, whether it’s a novel or an online article. It improves your thinking and language skills. Reading out loud to yourself or to someone else (or being read to) can be even better because it stimulates your ability to listen.
8. Use your non-dominant hand
Use your left hand if you’re right-handed and use your right hand if you’re left-handed. This can be beneficial even if it’s for simple tasks like pouring a drink, making food, opening the door or brushing your teeth. Once you get better at it, you could try writing with your non-dominant hand. This exercises the opposite side of your brain.
9. Do sums in your head
Calculate the tip without a calculator when paying for your meal or work out personal budgets in your head. You could even try and recall how much you spent in a day. This exercises your numerical skills and can help stimulate memory.
10. Try a new form of physical exercise
Physical exercise can improve your motor skills, eliminate haziness in the morning, decrease fatigue and increase alertness. Try something new; it doesn’t have to be running or walking. You could do yoga, sign up for a dance class or start a new team sport. These are all great for co-ordination too.
Everyone’s brain works a little differently. If you’d like to know how your brain functions best, consider reading this blog post called What is Your Ideal Study Technique?