Do you find yourself struggling with interview skills and cognitive skills tests? Are these struggles holding you back from achieving your high-level promotions and professional goals? The good news is that it’s never too late to boost your cognitive abilities.
As we age, our cognitive ability declines, our processing speeds slow, and our working memory weakens. Until recent years, this has always just been considered a natural part of the aging process. However, we now understand we’re able to improve our cognitive function beyond early childhood and well into our adult years.
Research shows that maintaining an active brain maintains and improves cognitive function. Here are a few things you can do as an adult to sharpen your cognitive functions and whip your brain into shape. Not just today, but for a lifetime.
The Brain is Like a Muscle
When you need to strengthen a muscle, you physically exercise to challenge that muscle to work harder than it has in the past. As your muscle works harder, strain occurs. The body’s natural response to this strain is to develop new tissue that will accommodate the strain. This new tissue makes it possible for the muscle to do things that it previously could not do. Our brain develops similarly.
Your brain is constantly changing throughout your life. As the brain continues to develop, old neural pathways are replaced with new neurological pathways. Our brain is capable of growing new neurological circuits and becomes denser as these new circuits are created. Like a muscle, with proper training, the brain can learn to perform tasks that were previously not possible. This process is called neuroplasticity.
Increased Physical Activity Improves Cognitive Function
In 2013, researchers at Harvard Medical School released a study showing a specific molecule released during endurance exercise that improves cognition and protects the brain against degeneration.
The study found that in addition to promoting long-term cognitive growth and development, the positive effects of physical activity go beyond physical health and cerebral capacity. The routine physical activity also helps to strengthen a wide range of life skills by improving confidence, motivation, self-esteem and overall psychological well-being.
Creativity Promotes Neurological Growth
Creativity fuels neurological growth. Neuroscientists have discovered numerous ways musical training and other artistic activities improve the function and connectivity of different regions in the brain, strengthening and improving cognitive function. Practicing a musical instrument, painting, reading and writing all strengthen the communication between brain areas and increases brain volume.
Mindfulness and Meditation
Neuroscientists at the University of California, Berkeley, found that chronic stress triggers “long-term changes in brain structure and function which can lead to cognitive decline.” Stress triggers the production of cortisol. High levels of cortisol caused by chronic stress can damage the brain. Meditation reduces anxiety which in turn helps to promote brain health.
Additionally, researchers found that individuals who practiced mindful meditation on a regular basis were able to adjust the brain wave that screens distractions and increase their productivity more quickly than those who did not meditate.
Cognitive Brain Training
Regardless of your industry, a faster and stronger brain will help further your career advancement, earning potential and future. A customised one-on-one brain training mental exercises are designed to strengthen specific cognitive skills. Stronger cognitive skills translate to real life improvements in memory, clarity, attention, logic, and processing speed.
Cognitive skills training programs are designed for professionals and corporates to strengthen cognitive function, and to improve attention and memory recall. Whether you are a professional executive struggling with focus or a senior citizen searching for ways to stay sharp, there are plenty of ways to impact and improve how well your brain performs.