Challenge Your Brain: 3 Simple Ways

“Experience is food for the brain.” Bill Watterson

When I ask attendees of my memory fitness programs what they do to upgrade their memory fitness program, the answers are the typically reading, word games, crafts, hobbies, etc. Since research supports challenging your brain as one of the important aspects of successful aging, you need to include activities that make you feel like you do when they change the layout in your grocery store.

Why do so many people shake their head or groan when that comment is made? When you go shopping and know the layout your brain goes on automatic pilot. Switch things around and you need to pay attention more closely. That is a basic skill that is very important to  enhancing your ability to remember so here are some things you can do to help you be more open to this “challenge your brain” concept.

1. Use your other hand. Just try little things such as opening the door with your non-dominant hand. Maybe you will put the coffee cup in your other hand, or your toothbrush.

2. Find a different source for information. Read a different newspaper, magazine or website. Be open to the views of those with a different opinion.

3. Change things up. Explore a different route when driving to a familiar place. Sit in a different chair while watching television or having a meal. Order something different from a menu, try a new recipe, or a different store for some of your groceries or other supplies.

For additional ideas: Take Your Memory Fitness Routine Up a Notch Part 1 and Part 2  and Memory Fitness Toolkit. Also check Quick Link to all blogs

About Kathryn Kilpatrick

Kathryn Kilpatrick received her Master's degree in Speech-Language Pathology in 1968 from the University of Massachusetts. She has worked in a variety of settings, primarily in Ohio, including hospitals, rehabilitation centers, and for decades in the area of home health care. Kathryn is president of Memory Fitness Matters ( and Communication Connection( She offers memory coaching for all ages and has a geriatric consulting practice. She is a national motivational speaker and author of more than 30 products to enhance communication and connection as well as a Memory Fitness Toolkit. Kathryn brings her decades of experience as a speech-language pathologist to all those wanting to enhance their quality of life, particularly when there are communication, memory and cognitive challenges. Her websites offer information on a wide variety of topics related to elder care concerns as well as memory fitness and successful aging.
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