I have been inspired by the book The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge, MD. I am going through it for the third time for two reasons: to inspire my brain with concepts of its plastic nature (its ability to be flexible and to rebuild itself in new ways), and to learn practical ways to keep my brain young and well fed. After all, I am 60 now and even as much as I continue learning (thus, feeding the brain new material to keep it active), I have noticed some decline. I need to nip this in the bud!
So, after Dr. Doidge’s high praise of certain brain exercise programs, developed by some of the leaders in neuro-plasticity, I am embarking on one, the Posit Science Corporation’s “Brain Fitness” program. And to keep me honest and accountable, I am posting my progress and impressions of the program here on the blog as the training proceeds.
It’s not like I have the extra hour each day to do it; my days are filled with my occupations of blogger, author, show host and coffee dealer. But that is precisely why this is a good time to take this brain-building course. I need additional brainpower and efficiency to keep up all the related business activities and still have time for family, food prep, rest, exercise and mindfulness.
Three Best Assets
A couple of months ago, it struck me to the core that there are three things we need in order to live long and full lives. Without these three, our quality of life at any age is severely compromised. They are our top assets in life.
The first one is good health and minimally, enough health to be mobile and self-sufficient for the basic needs of food preparation, exercise, dressing, washing and toileting. The second predictor of quality-of-life is related to the first: mental clarity. Our continued heath and positive feelings depend on a clear set of priorities, interest in life and mental engagement- all are dependent on brain health and activity. The third piece of the core is interdependent on health and mental clarity: motivation. Motivation is keeping our health and mental faculties as the highest priorities- in spite of inconvenience, social pressure, financial issues or other life circumstances. Motivation keeps us from falling apart, giving in and otherwise compromising our greatest assets. (I wrote about this in the blog titled “What’s first? What’s next? HMM)
So this blog on “Brain Fitness” is my follow-through with the mental clarity aspect of the core priorities of living fully and long. My guess is that the brain tune-up will also aid me in motivation as the thinking gets clearer and easier.
Other benefits of brain fitness that I am looking forward to because I have seen that I am less than fully charged:
- Easier word recall (memory)
- Better tracking of multiple objects, tasks and conversations (focus)
- Sharper attention (focus) on present tasks
- Easier connection with numbers
- Better object, name and fact retention (memory)
- Better recollection of sequences, such as long numbers or events (memory)
- Easier differentiating between tasks, cause and effect, truth and bullshit
- Improved language skills, that I plan on using to brush up on my Spanish
- Last and not least, better hearing. I have always had a hearing difficulty and Dr. Doidge has pointed out that an auditory deficiency affects many other brain functions.
I ask you to join me on this journey into brain fitness by reading the blog (link), subscribing and/ or commenting (below). If you notice in yourself any similarities in brain inefficiency, don’t be shy; let that be your invitation to start Brain Fitness by Posit Science for your own mental security and mood enhancement. There is no reason these days to be trapped by an inefficient brain!
For further posts, just click the category “Posit Brain Fitness” in the right column.
Brain Fitness Blogs I recommend:
Not a blog, but a great free resource “Brain Connection Library”
Brainblogger, reporting on biopsychosocial perspectives
Neurosculpting, Where the mind reigns supreme, blog, radio and more
Sharp Brains, Tracking Brain Fitness and Innovation
My Brain Fitness Blog another blog recording progress using Posit Science Brain Fitness
Brain Fitness Now: Tips for Brain Fitness and Healthy Aging
Brain Training Programs
Brain HQ, developed by Posit Science
Dynamic Brain, Adult Brain Training Program
Cognifit, Brain Games and Memory Programs
Mind Sparkle, online brain training
Lumosity, online training to “Reclaim Your Brain”
Dakim BrainFitness, designed for people over 60
Brain Workshop using Dual N-Back Technology