People who don’t slow down mentally as they age usually adopt these 9 daily habits

In our fast-paced world, the key to maintaining mental agility as we age isn’t found in a magic pill or secret superfood.

Instead, it’s often the result of a collection of daily habits, practiced consistently over time.

These habits are not exclusive to the elite or genetically gifted, but are accessible to anyone willing to commit to their own personal growth and wellbeing.

They are less about staving off the inevitable and more about embracing the journey of ageing with positivity and resilience.

So, what are these daily habits that people who don’t slow down mentally as they age consistently adopt? Let’s delve in and explore them.

1) Embrace creativity

One of the most remarkable traits of those who maintain mental sharpness as they age is their active engagement with creativity.

This isn’t exclusive to those traditionally deemed ‘creative types’; it’s a habit anyone can foster.

Creativity is not confined to painting masterpieces or composing symphonies.

It’s also about finding unique solutions to daily challenges, making decisions that veer off the beaten path, or even engaging in imaginative thinking.

Consider the daily puzzles that appear in newspapers.

They’re not just there to occupy time; they’re actually a creative exercise.

They challenge us to think out of the box, to connect seemingly unrelated dots, and to come up with a coherent solution.

Creative thinking keeps our minds active, sharp, and adaptable.

It helps us tackle new challenges and learn new things, which are crucial for maintaining mental agility.

Remember: creativity isn’t about being the best; it’s about engaging your mind in new and challenging ways regularly.

This could be through problem-solving, artistic pursuits, or even just daydreaming.

2) Practice mindfulness

Another key habit that supports mental vitality is mindfulness.

It’s a practice I’ve personally adopted and have found tremendous value in.

Mindfulness is about being present and fully engaged with whatever we’re doing at the moment — free from judgment or distraction.

It’s about training our minds to focus on the current experience, rather than dwelling on the past or worrying about the future.

This mental training is a powerful tool for brain health.

Research shows that people who practice mindfulness have increased gray matter in brain areas associated with memory, sense of self, and emotion regulation.

Moreover, mindfulness can help us become more self-aware, enabling us to recognize and challenge limiting beliefs that might hold us back.

It paves the way for personal growth and resilience, essential for maintaining mental agility as we age.

The beauty of mindfulness is that it can be practiced anytime, anywhere.

Whether you’re washing dishes, taking a walk, or sitting in a meeting, you can cultivate mindfulness by simply bringing your attention to the present moment.

Sylvia Boorstein, a leading figure in mindfulness and meditation, put it perfectly when she said: “Mindfulness is the aware, balanced acceptance of the present experience. It isn’t more complicated than that. It is opening to or receiving the present moment, pleasant or unpleasant, just as it is, without either clinging to it or rejecting it.”

3) Prioritize personal growth

People who maintain their mental agility as they age are typically those who prioritize personal growth.

They understand that personal development isn’t something that just happens; it’s a conscious choice that requires consistent effort and attention.

This is not about striving for perfection or attempting to ‘fix’ oneself.

Instead, it’s about embracing the journey of self-discovery and becoming more aware of our strengths, weaknesses, beliefs, and values.

It’s about challenging old patterns and limiting beliefs, and opening ourselves up to new perspectives and possibilities.

Personal growth often comes with challenges and discomfort, but these are necessary components of the process.

They are opportunities to learn, adapt, and evolve.

I delve deeper into this topic in my video where I explore the illusion of happiness and why chasing it can actually make us miserable.

I challenge the common belief that pursuing happiness is the key to a fulfilling life and argue that true contentment comes from within.

This involves embracing life’s challenges, fostering meaningful relationships, and staying true to oneself.

If you find this helpful and want to join over 20,000 others who are exploring living a life with more purpose and freedom, click here to subscribe to my YouTube channel.

4) Foster authentic relationships

Maintaining mental sharpness as we age is not just about solitary habits and individual practices.

It’s also deeply intertwined with our relationships and interactions with others.

Authentic relationships are an essential part of our mental and emotional wellbeing.

They provide us with emotional support, challenge us to grow, and give us opportunities to practice empathy, compassion, and cooperation.

They bring joy, meaning, and a sense of belonging into our lives.

This is not about having countless friends or being constantly surrounded by people.

It’s about fostering deep connections based on mutual respect and authenticity.

It’s about being seen, heard, and valued for who we truly are.

In a society that often prioritizes independence over interdependence, recognizing the value of authentic relationships can be challenging.

Yet, no matter how self-reliant we may be, we are social beings by nature.

We thrive on connection and community.

Let’s not shy away from this truth.

Instead, let’s make it a point to cultivate authentic relationships as we age – with family, friends, partners, colleagues, or even with ourselves.

These connections enrich our lives in countless ways and keep our minds sharp and engaged.

5) Embrace obstacles as opportunities

Life is full of challenges and obstacles.

For those who maintain their mental agility as they age, these are not seen as burdens or roadblocks.

Instead, they are viewed as opportunities for growth, learning, and creative thinking.

This perspective shift is not easy. It requires resilience, courage, and a healthy dose of self-compassion.

Yet, those who manage to see their difficulties in this light often find that they are able to navigate life’s ups and downs with greater ease and grace.

Obstacles push us out of our comfort zones, compel us to think differently, and give us the chance to become more adaptable and innovative.

They teach us about our strengths and capabilities, helping us to understand ourselves better.

It’s about recognizing that every challenge contains within it the seeds of creative possibility.

As we navigate these challenges, we become more capable of creating the lives we desire.

I delve into this concept further in my video where I explore the dark side of entrepreneurship.

I talk about how society celebrates the dream of getting rich through being an entrepreneur but fails to spotlight the resilience and mindset required to get there. 

The lesson is that in life it’s important that we find fulfillment from the journey, even when it’s challenging, instead of living our life just for the outcome.

6) Cultivate a conscious relationship with money

At first glance, one might wonder how our relationship with money relates to maintaining mental agility as we age. However, the connection is more profound than it may seem.

Having a conscious relationship with money isn’t just about financial security or wealth accumulation.

It’s about aligning our financial decisions with our deepest values and using money as a tool for positive change.

Those who age with mental sharpness understand this.

They recognize that money is not just a means to an end, but an extension of their personal values and choices.

They make financial decisions not only based on personal gain, but also considering the broader impact of these choices – on their community, society, and the planet.

Moreover, they understand that true prosperity isn’t just about how much money they have, but about how they earn it and what they do with it.

They see money as a tool for personal growth, for creating positive change, and for contributing to a more just and sustainable world.

This approach to money fosters a sense of purpose, creativity, and ethical participation in the economy.

It helps them navigate financial decisions with greater clarity and confidence, contributing to their overall mental agility.

7) Commit to lifelong learning

In the quest for mental agility as we age, lifelong learning stands as a cornerstone habit.

The world is a vast reservoir of knowledge and wisdom, and those who don’t slow down mentally are the ones who keep their thirst for learning alive.

Lifelong learning isn’t just about academic pursuits or professional development.

It’s about maintaining an open mind and a curious spirit. It’s about constantly seeking to understand more about ourselves, others, and the world around us.

Whether it’s reading books, taking up new hobbies, attending workshops, or simply engaging in stimulating conversations, lifelong learners make it a habit to continuously expand their horizons.

They understand that growth and learning are not confined to classrooms or specific periods in our lives, but are continuous processes that enrich our lives.

8) Practice self-care

Taking care of our physical health is critical to maintaining mental sharpness as we age.

Regular exercise, a balanced diet, adequate sleep – these are all essential components of our overall wellbeing.

But self-care is more than just maintaining physical health.

It’s also about taking care of our emotional and mental wellbeing.

This could involve practices like meditation, spending time in nature, pursuing hobbies that bring us joy, or setting healthy boundaries in our relationships.

Keep in mind, self-care is not selfish or indulgent.

It’s a crucial investment in ourselves that not only boosts our physical health but also supports our mental and emotional resilience.

9) Cultivate gratitude

Finally, one of the most potent habits of people who maintain mental agility as they age is cultivating an attitude of gratitude.

Gratitude is a powerful practice that can significantly improve our mental wellbeing.

It shifts our focus from what’s wrong with our lives to what’s right – from lack and scarcity to abundance and fulfillment.

Practicing gratitude regularly can enhance our mood, reduce stress, and foster a positive outlook on life.

It helps us to appreciate the simple joys of life, deepens our relationships, and keeps us grounded.

People who age with mental agility often make it a habit to express gratitude daily – for the big things, the small things, and everything in between.

They understand that gratitude is not just about feeling good; it’s about recognizing and appreciating the inherent value in every moment of life.

The power of habitual living

The human brain is a fascinating organ, capable of remarkable adaptability and resilience. The habits we cultivate throughout our lives significantly influence its functioning, especially as we age.

People who manage to maintain their mental agility as they grow older have found a potent ally in their daily habits.

These habits – creativity, mindfulness, personal growth, authentic relationships, seeing obstacles as opportunities, conscious relationship with money, lifelong learning, self-care, and gratitude – are not just random activities.

They are powerful tools that keep the brain engaged, adaptable, and sharp.

These habits underscore the intricate relationship between our lifestyle choices and our cognitive health.

They remind us that maintaining mental agility as we age is less about genetic luck and more about the choices we make every day.

Whether it’s choosing to engage in creative thinking, fostering authentic relationships, or cultivating an attitude of gratitude, each habit is a step towards better mental health and overall wellbeing.

And while these habits play a crucial role in maintaining mental agility, they also enrich our lives in countless ways.

They foster a sense of purpose, encourage personal growth, deepen our relationships, promote self-care, and enhance our overall quality of life.

So now the question is: which of these habits will you start cultivating today?

And if you need help or inspiration along the way, remember that I’m here to support you on this journey.

Feel free to subscribe to my YouTube channel where I share insights and experiences on living a life with more purpose and freedom.

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Justin Brown

Justin Brown is an entrepreneur and thought leader in personal development and digital media, with a foundation in education from The London School of Economics and The Australian National University. As the co-founder of Ideapod, The Vessel, and a director at Brown Brothers Media, Justin has spearheaded platforms that significantly contribute to personal and collective growth. His deep insights are shared on his YouTube channel, JustinBrownVids, offering a rich blend of guidance on living a meaningful and purposeful life.

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