What do you love to do, but can’t fit into your schedule? Or, have you always wanted to take up a creative pursuit, but haven’t found the time? Hobbies are enjoyable, but they also enhance intelligence by nourishing your mind. Further to that, studies suggest that they may even extend healthy life expectancy. So, there’s no excuse to put that hobby on the backburner any longer.
Here are four brain-enhancing suggestions.
Learning to play a musical instrument can significantly enhance your brain function.
1. Play a musical instrument
It’s never too late to start, so pick up that guitar and start strumming.
Did you dream of being a rockstar when you were a kid? It’s not all about fame and fortune, as learning a musical instrument can increase creativity, analytical and fine motor skills. In fact, research suggests musicians have faster audio and tactile reaction times, as well as enhanced problem solving and memory skills. It’s never too late to start, so pick up that guitar and start strumming.
2. Read everything
It’s obvious that reading improves your intelligence, however the benefits are more substantial than you may know. It doesn’t really matter what you read either, as your brain creates new pathways regardless of the genre. This, in turn, speeds up your thinking process and helps protect against cognitive decay. So go ahead, make that cuppa, pick up your favourite book and don’t feel guilty. You’re improving your brain as you do so, whether you’re reading an article about investments or the latest bestselling romance novel.
Regular meditation improves an overall sense of well being.
For some people, meditation feels more like hard work than a hobby, as it’s hard to simply sit and focus on nothing. However, once you integrate the act into your routine, you’ll find that the benefits quickly impact your sense of well being. Just 20 minutes or so a day is all it takes to improve communication skills, stress levels and overall happiness, due to greater clarity of mind. Try relaxing before you meditate to tame your thoughts, by having a bath, reading or listening to calming music.
When you’re waiting for a meeting to start, there’s nothing on TV or you’re stuck at the airport, those crossword puzzles certainly come in handy. They’re not just a good tool for relieving boredom however, as you’re also increasing your cognitive abilities as you go. Don’t like crossword puzzles? Board games, video games, card games and riddles have a similar effect, in keeping you sharp now and into the future.