Seven Ways to Stay Mentally Fit
Photo by William Farlow on Unsplash

Whenever people start the long and often arduous journey toward getting physically fit, they normally spend their days planning routines, revising eating habits, and racing off to the gym. Yet, for most, they forget one of the more important parts of a fit life: a fit mind.

Creating a mentally fit state of mind is critical to your well being, and it has a direct and unquestionable impact on your physicality. There is a deep connection between the mind and body, so to overlook the mental side of fitness is a grand mistake.

With this in mind, consider the following ideas to make yourself more mentally prepared and satisfied. Sometimes the smallest of changes can go a long way.

1. Avoid the standard: 
The mind loses its edge when it gets overly patterned. Sure, people love routine and many depend on it, but it will dull the mind. Mix up your schedule, from the way you go about your day to the way you think about things, and you'll find your mental state is sharper and quicker.

2. Quality exercise: 
Here's part of the connection between body and mind. When the body works physically, the mind feels better. Without going into the chemical reactions involved in the process, to see this simply is important. A fit body, one that is active and paid attention to, strengthens the mind. And, much like the above advice, make sure to give yourself a variety of exercise experiences. They'll keep you fresh and carve out new paths in your brain.

3. Challenge yourself: 
Doing puzzles and games sharpens thinking, enhances your knowledge base, and makes the brain work in ways the regular day normally doesn't offer.

4. Challenge yourself again: 
Go beyond the idea of merely sitting on the train ride home doing puzzles. Broaden your horizons by taking a class on something you have always found interesting or joining a group of some sort. Getting involved in things you have passed up as life has progressed reignites your mind.

5. Avoid solitude: 
Most people enjoy a little alone time, but too much can hurt. Isolation is a mentally painful situation, so make sure you get enough social time. Energized, interesting conversation does wonders for the mind.

6. Eat fish: 
What you take in really matters for your brain, not just your beach muscles. Fish will give you the much needed Omega 3 fatty acids, which combine with the more prevalent Omega 6. The result is a far more flexible, adaptable brain.

7. Sleep: 
The need for sleep is paramount. An un-rested brain cannot function well. Knowing that a connection exists between chronic lack of sleep and softened intelligence, realize that having a solid block of sleep each night will give your mind the chance it needs to remain sharp.

These suggestions are easy to inject into your life, so no major alterations are probably needed. Yet making these simple changes can have both an immediate and long term impact on your mental fitness.

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