The human brain is probably among the most complicated structures in nature. It weighs at around 1.5kg and consists of more than 100 billion neurons that pass along signals to each other. The brain is what controls the cognitive functioning of our thinking, speaking, imagining, planning, physical movements and reasoning. To enhance your thinking, analyzing and planning skills, you will need a good memory power.
Many students have issues with evaluating, memorizing and responding to information that the brain receives. When they experience this, it is an indication of low memory power. There are several reasons for a lack in memory power, which include stress, improper nutrition, deficiency of oxygen and lack of physical activity.
As you begin reaching adulthood, millions of neural pathways have already developed into your brain, which helps you in processing and recalling information fast, solving familiar issues and executing familiar tasks using minimal mental effort. However, if you continue to stay with well-worn paths, you are not providing your brain with the stimulation it needs in order to continue growing and developing. From time to time, you need to shake things up a bit.
Like muscular strength, memory needs to be used or you lose it. The more workout you give your brain, the better you will be able to take in and remember information. However, not every activity is equal. The best exercises for your brain will break you of routine and challenge you into using and developing new brain pathways.
4 Essential Components of Great Brain-Boosting Activities
1. Learning something new
Regardless of how much the activity is intellectually demanding, if it is a task you have already mastered, it isn’t proper brain exercise. The activity you do should be something unfamiliar to you and a bit out of your comfort zone. In order to learn and develop new skills, you need to strengthen your brain.
2. Facing a challenge
Brain-boosting activities that actually demand your full attention are the best. It is not enough that at one time the activity was challenging to you. It has to be challenging now and require mental effort. For instance, learning how to play a new piece of music that is challenging counts; attempting to play a challenging piece that you have already memorized doesn’t.
3. Building on a particular skill
Choose activities that will present you with the opportunity to begin at a simple level and then work your way up once you begin to improve your skills. This allows you to stretch your capabilities since you are constantly pushing the envelope. If you find you are starting to feel comfortable with a skill that was previously difficult, you need to move on to tackling the next level of performance.
4. Rewarding your brain
The brain’s learning process is supported by rewards. The more engaged and interested you become in an activity, the more you will likely continue doing it and the more benefit you will get from it. Therefore, select activities that, except for being challenging, are also satisfying and enjoyable.
So, try to think of something that you have always wanted to learn, such as juggle, playing the guitar, making pottery, speaking French, playing chess, mastering your golf swing, dancing the tango or perfect your essay writing. Any of these types of activities will help in improving your memory just as long as they continue to engage you and keep you challenged.