Think back to when you were a child and loved to play games.
Your parents may have purchased a game for you to help develop your memory.
All the cards were laid face down, and then you flipped a card over.
Then you flipped a second card over. If it matched the first, the two cards were removed.
The trick was to remember where certain cards were; hence the term memory game.
As a child, you thought you were just playing a fun game, when in reality, you were learning to hone your memory.
Later on, you may even have watched a game show called Concentration where basically you were doing the same thing as in the childhood game. Only this time, the contestants won prizes. The incentives change, but the ultimate goal is the sameto keep the brain sharp.
In the past, doctors and scientists thought cognitive decline (losing of ones memory) was simply the inevitable result of aging. However, we know now that its not a forgone conclusion that growing older means a mental decline. It is possible to maintain robust mental health throughout your life and keep your brain as sharp as it ever was.
Studies show a definite link between mental stimulation from leisure activities and improved cognitive function. Mentally challenging activities can actually provoke the growth of new cells and new connections in the brain. There are even studies that show the possibility that the human brain can regenerate.
The simple act of memorizing songs, poetry, dance steps, or learning new skills can stimulate the brain and keep it sharp. Playing games like chess, or computer games, even card games and word puzzles can improve your ability to concentrate. Other ways to keep your brain sharp would be to learn a new language or read and discuss books. Try taking a new class. Anything new will get those neurons firing. Any Tan says that memory feeds the imagination.
For those who enjoy their online time, there are even forums and discussion groups, where those with the same interests can visit and discuss everything from current events to music, books, theater and television. Theres nothing like a great little debate to keep those brain cells active.
Exercise is another way, believe it or not, to keep that gray matter healthy and active. A good, brisk walk or jog is great for clearing away the cobwebs and keeping your brain firing on all cylinders. It actually enhances the learning process. This happens because it increases cerebral blood flow, providing in turn an increased supply of oxygen and glucose to the brain.
With the great wave of Baby Boomers all becoming seniors in the next few years, there is even more of a need to stimulate the brain; improve your memory and keep it as young as possible. No one wants to end their days rocking on the porch, unable to remember their own names.
So, get out there and enhance your skills, take classes-- learn to dance, learn to play the piano, or guitar, read more and start a discussion group. Go to the movies and the theater, go to concerts, play games. But keep that brain working at top performance and speed.
In the words of Tryon Edwards (1809-1894), The secret of a good memory is attention, and attention to a subject depends upon our interest in it. We rarely forget that which has made a deep impression on our minds.
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How to Improve Your Memory
You are strolling at the mall when a stranger bumped at you. Because of the strength of the impact, your eyeglasses fell from the bridge of your nose down to the tiled floor. You went down to your knees and started the hopeful search. For just one moment, you got hold of your eyeglasses. It was broken.
With your shattered eyeglasses and blurry vision, you decided to go home. You reached the doorstep of your apartment and oh no! You forgot to drop by the grocery and buy some goods. You also forgot to pay the electric and phone bills. You have an empty refrigerator, dysfunctional eyeglasses, a past due electric bill, and a phone that is about to go over the minutes. Why did you forget to do so many things?
Two major factors affect the sharpness of your memory, internal and external. Internal factors include your state of health, emotion, and motivation. On the other hand, external factors refer to distractions from your environment. How can you enhance your memory?
One way is asking yourself the question, Am I forgetting anything? Forgetting to do the simple tasks of purchasing goods from the store and paying your bills actually makes sense, because your attention was focused on your damaged eyeglasses during those times that you should be remembering to do the planned tasks. When you are depressed, anxious, regretful, excited, happy, or currently under the influence of any other emotion, always ask yourself, Am I forgetting anything?
While it is true that emotions greatly affect the normal functioning of the brain, dont let emotions diminish your productivity. Train your brain to counteract the negative forces of emotion. Contemplate on the more important things that have to be done. Your efficiency will not only increase, but you will also feel better.
Another way is to give in to your bodily needs. Before starting to study, be sure that you feel comfortable. Eat if you are hungry, drink if you are thirsty, rest if you feel worn out, get well if you are sick, and sleep if you feel drowsy.
However, do not attempt to study just after eating, especially if you are satiated. Let your stomach digest the food first. Sometimes, it is hard to concentrate when the stomach is full.
One of the best times to study is just after a nap or a good nights sleep. Like the heart, the brain does not stop working even when you are sleeping. Most of the damaged cells of our brain and other body parts are being rejuvenated while we sleep. This is why information retention is the highest just after sleeping.
Do not waste your time and effort memorizing your lessons when your body aches. Stay healthy and relax for a while. If you force your brain to work, you will just get worse and you will not understand what you are studying.
Memorizing can be made easier if you first satisfy your bodys basic demands.
Eating the right kinds of food and doing physical exercise are other means to improve memory. The brain only gets its nourishment from the food and fluid that we intake. We must eat a well-balanced diet and drink plenty of water and fruit juices. In order to produce good output, the brain must also be fed with good input.
Another important thing to do is exercise. Exercise is good for the body, particularly for the heart and brain. There are three main aims of exercise - flexibility, endurance and balance. If we exercise, we specifically improve the condition of our brain because it is the core control of our body.
The brain and other internal organs also need to score high on the three aims of exercise. The healthier your brain is, the more knowledge you can grasp and the sharper would be your memory.
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