Recently, listening to "The Brain that Changes Itself" (Norman Doidge) I was encouraged to hear that we seniors can keep our brains from deteriorating and even prevent Alzheimer’s! When we reach middle age, we tend to rest on our laurels, using the skills we’ve developed over the years (the established neurological ‘brain maps’), but Doidge writes that we need to develop new brain maps as we age. The key is challenging our brains with new learning, new skills, new input. Learning must be a life-long activity. The most vibrant older people we meet renew their brains and bodies and reinvigorate themselves with new friends, new challenges and serving other people.
Just a few suggestions for more vigor and joy in your life:
- Study a foreign (to you) language
- Take up a musical instrument, get lessons
- Meet weekly with friends to play a game of cards
- Volunteer in the community; meet new friends
- Get on your treadmill (or go out for a long walk) or stationary bike with a good audiobook
- Take a dance class and show off your moves
- Take up a new craft (woodworking, crochet, etc) or pick back up one you already know
- Enroll in a community college class
Another great idea: Many seniors have problems with receiving auditory input, which puts a real damper on relationships and social activity. Sound therapy is an excellent tool for improving auditory reception as well as mood, balance, concentration and energy. The Listening Program’s music production techniques are designed to stimulate, or “exercise,” the different functions of the auditory processing system. This enables the brain to better receive, process and use incoming information.
A sound therapy program of beautiful classical music can improve our brains and our social lives as we get older, by improving the way we hear conversations and engage with our loved ones. Call me if you’d like to reinvigorate your brain with The Listening Program.
Let's go! I’m doing my TLP 'listening' today and starting piano lessons soon!