10 Brain Exercises to Strengthen your Mental Fitness and Change your Life

May 01, 2023

"Every time you’re tempted to react in the same old way, ask yourself if you want to be a prisoner of the past or a pioneer of the future."

Mentally, physically, emotionally – change is possible! You can be a pioneer of your future instead of being a prisoner to the past by making conscious changes in each moment to create the life you want.

Your mind is so powerful. There are infinite amounts of possibilities all around you, but in order for you to find them you have to get your mind right. 

In today's world you’re bombarded with information from morning till night. There’s so much noise from tv, social media, the radio and the internet that you often overlook activities that have a big impact on your mind.

The good news is that the brain is one of the most adaptable and responsive organs in the human body. It’ll soak up new challenges like a sponge and you can continue learning at all ages, and stages, of your life.

There are so many things you can do to keep your brain active and strong – everything from reading books, to playing games and even exercising. They all do so much for your memory, problem solving and concentration abilities.

Today I want to share with you some brain exercises that can boost your mental fitness and provide you with the mindset to know that all things are possible in life. That you can change just about anything you want, at any given moment. When you take action to strengthen your brain, you start to realize that all things are possible. You can change anything you want in your life with some discipline, consistency and conviction.

Start making conscious changes to your brain to create powerful changes in your life.

1. Develop a consistent daily routine

When it comes to your brain, routines are its best friend. A daily routine is having a schedule where you dedicate a specific amount of time to your favorite brain exercises every day. You can start light, even 5-10 minutes a day can make a big difference. Small changes are good!

Create a short, but consistent brain exercise into your day – word finder, cross word puzzles, sudoku, listening to a book on tape. Whatever you choose, just do it daily, starting at 5 minutes.

2. Read books

I know you’ve heard this a million times, but it’s for a reason. Reading is one of easiest ways to exercise your eyes and your brain. Whether you want to read a self-help book, science fiction or fantasy – read, exercise your eye muscles, extend your vocabulary, creativity and strengthen that brain of yours.

3. Be playful

You probably associate playing with your childhood, but playing games are so great for your brain. They’re a fun and interactive way to exercise your brain, and improve your memory, problem solving and attention.

There are lots of different games that can benefit your brain – both traditional board games and modern video games. You can also challenge yourself to learn a new skill-based game like chess, poker or fun card games.  These are inexpensive, accessible ways to exercise your brain.

4. Learn a new recipe!

Every time you learn a new recipe your brain is getting stronger. That’s one of the unique parts of Nourished. In Nourished, you’re given 3 new recipes to learn each month. That way you don’t have an overwhelming amount of new meals to put together, but instead you cook, repeat and actually learn how to make 3 new meals each month! This is one of my favorite ways to strengthen your brain because it also brings in healthy eating!

5. Do all types of puzzles!

Puzzles are great ways to exercise your brain. Just a few minutes a day with a goal to finish by the end of the week. Remember, it’s just small amounts of time that add up to big changes. You can include your roommates or family for fun. Making it playful or competitive for an added bonus.

6. Get physical

You may have heard that brain exercises and physical activity are great for mental health, but did you know that physical activity is one of the best ways to keep your brain healthy and improve your thinking skills?

There’s lots of different forms of physical activity you can try to strengthen your brain power. You could try a new sport, lift weights, or go for a run or walk outside. We also have awesome mindful movement practices that are great for your brain in Nourished! Physical activity has been shown to improve thinking skills and mental health because it releases helpful chemicals and endorphins.  One of the chemicals is BDNF – brain derived neurotrophic factor which is like a miracle grow for your brain. So moving your body, daily, is important for your brain health.

7. Use your non-dominant hand

Using your non-dominant hand is great to do when you’re eating, writing or brushing your teeth. It’s challenging, but that’s the point. It’s a great way to increase brain activity.  

8. Meditate

Meditation has been proven over time to be associated with neuroplasticity, reduction in aging the brain, and improving cognitive abilities. Try adding meditation in your morning routine, and even at the end of your “workday” before dinner. Start small. You can find a library full of mindful meditations, all around 10 minutes long in Nourished!

9. Sleep

I realize this doesn’t seem like an actual brain exercise, but sleeping is like recharging your mental battery. If you have trouble sleeping, then your brain has to work way harder the next day. Lack of sleep can lead to a decline in your ability to think, memorize, and remember things. When you’re sleeping, one of many amazing things that happens is all the stuff you learned that day stores themselves in a part of your brain that is more permanent. It helps you retain information you’ve learned. Aim to get 7-9 hours of sleep to help strengthen your brain.

10. Learn a new skill

Just like learning a new recipe, a skill focuses on memory and hand-eye coordination. That can be a more fun way to improve your brain health because you can choose the hobby or skill. Some examples are singing, playing an instrument, drawing, DIY crafts, knitting or even a new sport like pickleball. Just by attempting to learn, you’re working the muscle.

There are so many ways to strengthen your brain and when you start doing just one of these actions consistently, you’ll realize that you can do even more. There are endless possibilities for you. Whatever you want to become, start small and start now. Your discipline and mental attitude determines the results you’ll see. So, get your mind right by starting to exercise it!

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