SEEK ADVENTURE. It turns out that wasting time hanging out with friends is not a waste of time after all. Research has shown that if we spend time connecting with other people then we are helping to keep our vital brain function at it's best. How does this work - Next time you are thinking about staying late in the office or working on your own at home, remember your brain health, and don't skip the socializing.
Social interaction and creativity are important for our long term health. I like to think of this as our adventure time. It's the opportunity to put aside our responsibilities, and do something that we enjoy or that challenges our creativity and intellectual curiosity.
While socializing has been found to be an important part of reducing our risk of dementia; it is even more effective if we combine our social activity with mental stimulation and physical activity. Making sure that we have some adventure, either a small part of each day or bigger part of one day of the week, is vital to maintaining our cognitive and social well-being. Examples might include:
Learning a new form of communication (like a language or social media APP);
Travelling to new places and navigating our way;
Visiting an art gallery and learning about the new exhibits;
Learning a new skill in a group;
Meeting new people and participating in conversation while doing an activity (walking, shopping, car wash, volunteering);
For some amazing fun, what about planning a big adventure (like that dream vacation or challenge you have been wanting to achieve; grab a friend and go for it.
Have you invested in your spirit of adventure?
A list of things that I'd like you to ponder when thinking about how much adventure you are seeking right now (Let me know what emotions and thoughts strike you as you read this list. Write in the comments below).
Recently has there been substantial time where you've been able to connect with people on a level that is totally in tune with your social side?
Do you have a short or long term plan that involves participating in, going somewhere, or completing something 'just because'?
How often do you have the opportunity to participate in deep sharing about what is happening in your world from your perspective? (Deep sharing goes beyond the 'How are you? I'm fine' kind of chat).
Today, have you had the opportunity to switch from "functional self" to "dreamer/adventure/creative self"?
If you were given a day off from responsibilities to take a mini-adventure for the day, would you have the resources, the energy, and the destination/fun idea to take your adventure now?
Are you already an adventurer or do you need to start to become one (since your brain is counting on you)?
In the comments below, let me know your answer to any of the questions in my list. I can't wait to hear from you.