Why should you train your memory?
Your memory is a priceless asset that you should not only take care of, but spend time developing. One way to do this effectively is to get in the habit of training your mind through daily brain exercises. As you learn new skills, your brain continues to grow—even as you get older. However, not exercising your brain might cause memory loss and an inability to cope with stress. Here are seven reasons to train your memory.
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Daily brain workout and new brain pathways
When you reach adulthood, your brain has built millions of neural pathways that help you function. These networks help you remember information quickly, perform routine tasks, and solve common problems with the least amount of mental effort. Memory is a muscle, and you have to use it or lose it. The more you train your brain, the better you can process and recall information. Make them part of your daily routine by scheduling time and increasing the challenge. The more you use your brain, the more new brain pathways you can grow.
Physical exercise helps your brain stay strong, just like mental exercise. It raises oxygen levels in your brain and decreases the risk for disorders that leads to memory loss, such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Training your brain also aids in reducing stress hormones. Most significantly, it plays a vital role in neuroplasticity by strengthening development and stimulating new neural growth. So, choose activities that get your blood pumping, such as aerobic exercise. Remember, what’s good for your heart is also good for your brain.
For your brain to work at optimal levels, it needs a good night’s sleep, in addition to all the training throughout the day. Over 95% of adults need seven and a half to nine hours of sleep every night to avoid sleep deficiency. There is a difference between the amount of sleep you need to work at your best and the minimum amount of sleep you can get. Studies show that sleep is essential for memory consolidation, with the key memory-enhancing activity happening through the deepest stages of sleep. Compromising on sleep—even for a few hours—may affect memory, problem-solving abilities, creativity, and thinking skills. One way to get better sleep is by turning off all screens at least one hour before bed. The blue light emission in tv, phone, and computer screens may trigger insomnia and suppress melatonin, the sleep hormone.
Countless studies show that a life filled with friends and fun has many cognitive benefits. Healthy relationships are the ultimate brain booster. Humans are highly social animals and have evolved to survive in groups, not isolation. Socializing with others may offer the best kind of brain stimulation and mental exercise. Meaningful friendships provide a strong and vital support system for our brain and emotional health. There are many ways to take advantage of the memory-boosting benefits of socializing. You can join a club, see friends regularly, or do volunteer work. You can also enjoy similar emotional benefits of owning a pet, especially a dog.
Stress is one of the worst enemies of the brain and can lead to memory loss. Over time, chronic stress destroys brain cells and may shrink the region of the brain that creates new memories and recovers old memories. Training your brain helps you notice your stress levels, so that you can take steps to calm your mind when it becomes overpowering. Decreasing your stress levels slows the release of stress chemicals and helps protect your brain against long-term damage.
Laughter is the best medicine
Physiologist Daniel Goleman wrote in his book, Emotional Intelligence, “laughter seems to help people think more broadly and associate more freely”. It engages multiple regions across the brain and as well as the body. Watching a comedy and listening to jokes activates an area of the brain associated with learning and creativity. Surround yourself with playful and fun-loving people. Humor and laughter are infectious. Frame photographs with memories of you and your loved ones having fun. Interact with children, as they are experts on playing, laughing, and taking things lightly.
The brain needs fuel, just like the body. A diet based on vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and healthy fats—such as nuts, fish, olive oil, and lean protein—supplies a lot of health benefits and also improves memory. Research shows that omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial for brain health. If you don’t like seafood, you can find other sources of omega-3 in foods like walnuts, ground flaxseed, winter squash, seaweed, spinach, broccoli, pumpkin seeds, and soybeans. Ensure you eat plenty of fruits and vegetables in your daily diet. Packed with antioxidants, these organic foods guard your brain cells against harm.
You need to train your memory, and there are many ways to do that. By maintaining good brain health, your memory will last well into old age.
For more tips on how to train your limitless brain, watch this video: