Increase Your Imagination Time

Children use their imagination all the time. As you got older you may have used your imagination to feed your creativity.  Its definition is the act or power of forming a mental IMAGE of something not present to the senses or never wholly perceived in reality. There was Harvard University study done several years ago that talked about the link between an older adult’s ability to form imaginary scenarios and the ability to recall detailed memories. When looking at the synonyms, take a moment to think of how these fit into your daily routine. How often would you describe yourself as being creative, imaginative, resourceful, inspirational, clever, or innovative? Which ones interest you the most? Think of some people you know who might display some of these characteristics and when you have also been able to let that part of you shine.

Perhaps you notice your imagination peaking when reading a book. With the words on the page, are you able see, feel, and smell what is going on? I recently listened to a novel by a popular author on CD and I had a picture in my mind of the setting because her ability with words made it almost real to me.  Hearing the voices when they pick good readers for the audio often takes it to another level. When reading books, I am more likely to scan over some of those descriptive areas. I am grateful to have good hearing and found audio books as a way to entertain myself when on the road, often several hours a day. I had to laugh because after getting home rather late the other evening, I sat in the car for a few more minutes just to hear the ending.

Did you grow up listening to radio shows? It is a great way to try and stir up some imagination as you try to picture the characters and events. My family was not one to listened to the radio before television was popular but I clearly remember hearing shows on the radio whenever I went to visit one of my friends.
It was interesting to me that some of the early shows on TV actually started as radio shows. Recently I was introduced to a series of old time radio shows on CD and I was captivated by what it provided during those years when they were most popular. My older adult clients always have something they recall when I mention that topic.  After talking to them I decided that listening to them is a great way to use your imagination.

Do something creative. Use your imagination.  Hang around with someone who is creative and enjoy watching what they are doing. Perhaps you will want to learn a little more or join in.  Read something positive and imagine the scenario. Listen to a radio program or, even better, think of someone who may have grown up listening to shows on the radio and share the experience with them. Compare what you imagined with others. It will be interesting to see the similarities and differences. You will have some great conversation starters and are creating some memories for both of you.

I like nonsense. It wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living. It’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life’s realities.  Dr. Seuss

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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