Skip to main content

There has been a significant shift in society calling for healthier, smarter choices. People are focusing on eating more nutritious meals and adding exercise into their routines as a daily habit. While we focus so heavily on our physical well-being, often our mind has been forgotten about. With time and age our mind begins to fail us, our critical thinking skills fail and we find ourselves talking about the ‘better days.’

The truth is that we don’t have to accept that we are on an inevitable path to our mind and intelligence failing us. There are habits that we can add to our daily routines that will work out our minds in the same way that we actively work out our bodies, keeping ourselves in top shape when it comes to thinking, problem-solving and memory.

Here are 8 habits to help improve your creativity, build upon your critical thinking skills and reduce mental stress:

  1. Always Ask Questions and Keep Learning

It is easy to fall into the trap of being comfortable with what you know, do and believe. Falling into this trap allows your mind to fall stagnant, which in the long run will allow the mind to begin to deteriorate with age. Remaining naturally curious will allow you to constantly be challenging and pushing your thoughts, learning something new each and every day. It doesn’t have to always be something big, but something as simple as going shopping can become an opportunity to gain the knowledge you didn’t previously have.


  1. Curl Up with a Good Book

Reading a book stretches your mind on many different levels. A good book regardless of the genre will challenge your language skills, expanding upon your current vocabulary. There is also the all too important aspect of imagination, triggered by each and every book you read. There is something magical about the world that you enter when engaged with a good book, creating your own interpretation of the story, the setting and the characters within your mind.



  1. Don’t Limit Yourself to Small Talk

So many of our conversations are based on nothing more than small talk, however, if you find yourself only talking about the weather or the latest sports news, you are missing out on a huge opportunity to stretch the limits of your mind. Instead, take the opportunity when talking with those that you trust to share some deeper conversations – discussing topics that inspire your soul and motivate you in life. Equally as important is the ability to listen to the thoughts, opinions, and inspirations of those around you expanding and building upon your own experiences and beliefs.


  1. Engage in Meditation

Often associated solely with Yoga, meditation has been found to have a number of different benefits on the body and the brain. The purpose of practicing meditation is to declutter your thoughts, eliminating negative energies within your mind and soul. Regularly practicing meditation will allow you to remove some of the distractions that may otherwise be cluttering your mind, allowing you to remain calm and focused.


  1. Learn a New Skill

The old saying goes ‘You can’t teach an old dog new tricks,’ however, this has been found to be untrue. Not only can you learn a new skill at any age, but doing so will help you to ‘exercise’ your mind the same way that you would your body. There are many different skills and activities that you can turn to in order to stretch our mind, such as learning a new language, researching the history of someone that you look up to (such as a historical figure, politician or celebrity), or learning to play a musical instrument.


  1. Make Problem Solving Fun

Actively practicing your problem-solving skills will allow you to keep your mind sharp and focused, always growing and expanding upon your critical thinking skills. There are many different activities that you can use to keep your mind sharp including phone apps geared towards problem-solving, crossword puzzles, Sudoku, jigsaw puzzles or a Rubik’s cube. Try different activities and find whichever activity you find to be the most fun!


  1. Follow the News

While the mainstream news can be a source of stress and negativity for some, actively staying up to date on current events will not only provide you with deep topics for upcoming conversations but will also help to improve upon and grow your cultural awareness and knowledge of other beliefs and lifestyles outside of your own. This will challenge your thinking and provide you with new opinions and ideas to consider.


  1. Pay Attention to What You Eat

While your diet obviously has a significant impact on your physical health, it also plays an important role in your mental health. If you are dragging, feeling that you are slow and sluggish overall, this will also carry through to your mind causing your mind to run slowly. A healthy, well-balanced diet, ensuring that you are covering the vitamins and minerals that the body needs, will allow the mind to function optimally.