Our brain is an organ that needs activity. It is designed to be in constant operation, it is not in vain that it is our operations center and each and every one of the execution orders of the rest of the organs radiates from the nervous system, depending on our brain being active. In addition, our brain is the memory hard drive where we store all the information that we need to process in our day to day, so its correct maintenance is crucial for its proper functioning.
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How to improve cognitive performance
Cognitive decline reduces our brain functionality for different reasons, whether due to the passage of time due to aging or some type of neurocognitive problem or neurodegenerative disease. This can affect one or more of our eight basic psychological processes : attention, memory, perception, learning, language, motivation, emotional management and thinking.
As happens when we go to the gym to train our body, we must do the same with our brain: train it! It is the best way to prevent premature cognitive dysfunction and improve our mental abilities and performance, since its exercise reactivates the creation of new neurons and improves our emotional management, which will even prevent problems related to stress or anxiety.
In the end, having a balanced brain has a direct impact on the management of our daily conflicts, so by generating fewer or resolving them more quickly, we will also have less accumulated cognitive tension throughout the day.
6 activities to strengthen our mind
Well, we are going to try to give you some ideas to improve your cognitive performance and keep your mind and brain active to face all our commitments more efficiently, whether at an educational or professional level.
Perform physical exercise
Physical activity naturally regulates the main brain neurotransmitters: dopamine, serotonin, endorphin and oxytocin, which are the basis of our emotional management. In order to have a healthy brain you also need raw material and exercise is a basic form of natural motivation. Logically, adapted to the needs and ages of each person. Some of the exercises for all ages are: yoga, tai chi or dance.
It has also been shown that aerobic exercise increases blood flow in the brain, thus increasing the functionalities of the hippocampus, which is directly involved in verbal memory and learning, thus strengthening and protecting the brain from adversity.
As we said in the previous point, the raw material is essential to be able to build cognition. Therefore, maintaining a good diet and a balanced diet will also promote and prevent premature cognitive decline. Foods such as fruit, green leafy vegetables, fish (salmon, tuna…), some nuts or even chocolate (without stuffing yourself) usually activate our brain.
There are food supplements that help maintain that mental balance and improve cognitive performance, this solution is usually very effective, especially to keep fatigue and cognitive fatigue at bay.
Of course, drinking plenty of water is essential to keep the organ hydrated.
Related to food, we can include cooking as an activity that needs some planning and organization that will be another hobby that improves our general mental abilities.
Play tactical games: train your mind by playing
One of the best ways to improve our cognition by playing and entertaining ourselves is by practicing sports or tactical board games such as chess, checkers, jenga, card games, strategy games, etc. Another way to exercise it by playing is through games that involve retrieving information from memory, such as quiz games or the like.
The use of video games is also a very good way to use the mind since they improve processes such as visual perception, reaction speed, memory, attention and decision making. In addition, it is a good way to approach current youth entertainment and a good excuse to share good times with the youngest.
Another good way to entertain yourself and learn while playing is through origami games or similar, all those manual creation activities that require planning, memory and concentration to carry them out.
Our brain tends to automate processes, but sometimes a good way to activate it is by carrying out our daily activities but in a different way. For example, going to work by different places or means: one day by bicycle, another on foot, another by car, using different means of transport or different roads, etc. We can also modify how we have arranged our desk or closet, or the order of our morning routine, to somehow force the brain to reorganize and activate itself to control again all the new variables that we have created for it.
Read, write, speak and listen
Handwriting is missing out, but it’s a good way to exercise your brain because it also requires fine motor coordination . Expressing emotionally is also a way of freeing the brain and remembering situations that improves the links between memory and emotion. In case of not doing it by handwriting, it can also be done typed on a computer.
Related to this, the fact of reading a novel, or any other type of writing, is a pleasure that improves attention and concentration. Going to a library or a book club can indirectly improve social relationships as well. Talking and communicating is an almost essential human need that will also help prevent cognitive decline.
If we speak, we also listen and this ability to process language information is also an exercise for our brain. One of the best ways to listen is to do it through music , the pleasure that music gives and the lyrics that require us to understand them is another tool for easy and simple improvement.
Sleep and rest
During sleep there is a recycling process of all the “garbage” accumulated in our brain throughout the day, so maintaining good rest and sleep is also essential to start our days with more energy for cognitive improvement. . Without energy we can do little, so don’t forget to work your mind, but also to rest and relax as well.
There are many other formulas to keep the brain active, mental sedentary lifestyle is more common
There are many other formulas to keep the brain active, mental sedentary lifestyle is more common than it seems and it is in your hands to improve this fundamental condition for our personal well-being.