What’s the effect of stress on brain fitness?
Neither brains or bodies function well when under too much stress. A sharpbrains.com post notes,
“Living with high levels of sustained stress can have a profound negative impact on your psychological and brain health. While often there is little we can do to change the stressful situation itself, there are many things we can do to alter or manage our reactions to it. Managing stress and mastering our own emotions through simple lifestyle changes and the use of basic techniques that anyone can do can help reduce stress-related damage to the brain, improve emotional resilience and thwart cognitive decline as we age.”
Negative self-talk is a self-inflicted source of stress; not necessary, not useful, and damaging to bodies and brains. We can’t control most external stressors such as difficult bosses or partners, illness, traffic jams, money problems, paying off credit cards, but we can control negative self-talk. Break the habit and improve brain fitness and function: memory, attention span, problem solving, and emotional regulation.
What Else Can You Do to Defend Against Stress and Brain Decline?
Following some proven healthy practices helps brains and bodies, breaking the NST habit, and improving your ability to cope with stress.
• Exercise of any shape, size, or kind 3 days a week: gardening, walking, climbing stairs, standing instead of sitting or running, biking, the gym workout. Just moving instead of sitting makes a difference for a start.
• Healthy eating: veggies and fruit, grains and nuts.
• Learning new skills, developing different interests creates brain reserve — like money in a savings account.
• Learn problem-solving thinking, distraction/detachment and/or realistic thinking, meditation. (Search by post categories on this blog) Try some brain training for fun and challenge.