Blog #584 Exercise your brain – part I

Let’s exercise our MEMORY!!!

Scenario:  You meet an old friend in the grocery store.  
You:  “Hi, great to see you again”
Them:  “And great to see you again.  How’s the family?”
You:  “We are doing great, and yours”
Them:  “Good enough.  Bob had knee replacement surgery six months ago and he is able to play tennis again”.
You: (Who is this person?  How do I know them? Are they from work?  Was I on a PTA committee with them?) “Good to see you.  I’m on a tight schedule to pick up a few things for lunch”
Them:  “Me too.  Maybe we should get together some time for coffee?”
You:  “I’d love that”

For the next day, you are trying to remember that person.  You test almost all scenarios where you know them from. You must be close friends – after all they suggested going for coffee.  And, they have a husband named Bob – who likes to play tennis. Who are they? It might be a week and when you are doing something else, the name comes to you.  

Today’s link is from Everyday Health about Brain Exercises that Boost Memory

Here are some of the thoughts from that page:

-1 Test your recall.  Make a list (any list – grocery items, neighbors, shops, etc.) and memorize it.  Then an hour later try to recall the items. And, maybe at the end of the day try to recall the items.  How did you do? Do that every day to stimulate the part of the brain that affects memory.

-2 Learn something new.  The article suggests learning an instrument or join a choir.  The studies show that learning something new and complex also stimulates your brain.  I know people who can play almost any instrument – (mostly band directors / orchestra conductors) they seem to be able to pick up (say) a flute and play.  I’ve been telling people my next instrument is going to be the bagpipes – maybe I should get started NOW!!

-3 Do math in your head.  I am tutoring math and I am disappointed in one of my students who relies on her calculator way-too-much. I have tried to suggest shortcuts – like 82 times 50 is like 82 times 100 (easy) and then divide by 2 so 4100!!  She was doing 25 times 7 the other day and I suggested thinking of quarters. If four quarters is a dollar, and eight quarters is two dollars, wouldn’t seven quarters be 1.75?

-4 Take a cooking class.  Cooking stimulates many senses:  smell, touch, sight and taste. Try something out-of-the ordinary.  Get online and find a recipe for some French dish and try it. Plus you can try things differently – with oven, stove-top, fast-cookers, slow cookers – with different spices.  There used to be a cooking show where the contestants were given ten items and asked to make something with that.

-5 Learn a foreign language.  I’ve used Duolingo to learn Spanish (and I do need to go back over that) and to learn German.  I do German lessons for about 15 minutes every day.

More tomorrow as we look at the last five items off this list!!

Are you exercising your brain?


Posted by Bruce White

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