8 Improv

1 he visual arts are just one example of using creative expression as a brain exercise. Dub a segment of aTVshowwith your own script. Record the show, then play it back without sound. Have each player pick a role and make up dialogue for the part. When everyone is ready, run the tape silently again to your voice-overs. Try the same thing with an animal show like a National Geographic special. It's bound to elicit belly laughs. Play a family video with different kinds of background music (scary,...

6 Introduce Novelty

We wouldn't recommend trying all these things on the same morning, but do incorporate one or two of the following Vary the order in which you do your normal routine (e.g., get dressed after breakfast). If a bagel and coffee is your daily fare, try something else like hot oatmeal and herbal tea. Change the setting on your radio alarm or tune into a morning TV program you never watch. Sesame Street, for example, may arouse the brain to notice how much of what you take for granted is explored in...

10 Play The Ten Thing Game

Neurobics Exercises

Ooraeone hands you an ordinary object. You must use it to demonstrate ten different things that the object might be. Example A fly swatter might be a tennis racket, a golf club, a fan, a baton, a drumstick, a violin, a shovel, a microphone, a baseball bat, or a canoe paddle. In some ways, this game is similar to punning, whereby you reach into your mental sound database and associate a sound word with something else like it in a humorous way.

Starting And Ending The

All of us have our morning rituals to get us quickly and mindlessly out the door. These set routines allow the brain to go on automatic pilot and be more efficient. And at bedtime, when we need to wind down from a day of mental and physical exertion, routines are similarly comforting. Because routines are so ingrained in our mornings and evenings, they're ideal times to inject a bit of novelty to awaken new brain circuits.

4 Practice Neurobics In The Supermarket

Close your eyes and distinguish fruits by their smell or by the feel of their rinds. Use self-serve bins to buy small amounts of grains, cereals, or spices with different tastes, textures, or odors health food stores are especially good sources . i Change your usual route through the aisles. Ask the people at the meat, fish, or deli counters to help you choose something instead ofjust picking out prepackaged foods. i Change the way you scan the shelves. Stores are designed to...

Brain Works

The brain receives, organizes, and distributes information to guide our actions and also stores important information for future use. The problems we associate with getting older forgetfulness, not feeling sharp, or having difficulty learning new things involve the cerebral cortex and the hippocampus. Motor Cortex muscle control and coordination social behavior, abstract reasoning, Motor Cortex muscle control and coordination social behavior, abstract reasoning, brain areas involved in...