Feeling your memory slip can be scary and frustrating. As you probably know it is easier to prevent memory decline than it is to boost memory after it starts to deteriorate. That is why I am here. To give you the best way to improve memory before it is a problem.
How Can I Improve My Memory?
The best way to improve your memory is to get your brain into a calm and focused mode as much as possible. What this means in terms of brain speeds is that you linger in the middle near the medium to fast speed range. This range is referred to as Alpha to Low Beta. It is the range of speeds that creates calm focus. Alpha creates feeling of calmness while Low Beta creates feelings of focus.
Learn a New Skill to Improve Memory
When you learn something new, you are strengthening the synapses, or connections, in your brain. Also, you are beefing up the brain cells and making sure the electricity is flowing well within your brain circuits. It is like a workout for your brain. That is why it feels hard. I call it “challenging, yet rewarding” like anything that is worth it.
This past weekend I went golfing with the hubs, Dr. Cosmas Leigh. He is an avid golfer and he is purportedly a very good golfer. His friends rip on him because he is always teaching them about new golf techniques and giving them tips when they golf each weekend. That was fine with me, I could use the tips. I was in it for an evening of golf as date night. I was avoiding making dinner for 6 kids (again) and it gave me a reason to order pizza. Plus, if you’ve ever seen the movie Failure to Launch then you know when you have your man teach you something new it strengthens your relationship. This was all part of my master plan.
How Does Learning a New Skill Help Memory?
Cosmas was on and he gave me tons of golf tips that helped me get better throughout our game. I am a naturally decent golfer, so I was a good learner. However, it was challenging for my brain on a Friday evening. Learning something new is HARD. In the learning comes growth. Not only was I learning how to golf, I was literally expanding my mind. Through learning comes new ways of thinking. As it applies to brain speeds, learning something new puts your brain in the zone of low beta when you are concentrating, focusing, absorbing information, and then trying to implement a skill. If it is fun and enjoyable, you are also using Alpha medium speed to feel calm. You know what I always say #controlyourbrainoritwillcontrolyou
How Does Anxiety Impact Memory?
Unless of course there are dudes coming up behind you on the fairway, in a foursome, to watch your next shot while they wait for you to finish. Yikes. This shoots your brain directly into High Beta, the extra fast mode that creates stress, feelings of anxiety and nervousness.
Hence, the Friday evening golf trips. If you have ever heard me speak, I always tell people to set themselves up for success, not failure. I always want to go Friday evening, the last people out. Boom. Comfortable environment for a challenging learning session. It is a must for me to be able to engage in golf. I cannot be rushed, I absolutely cannot have people staring at me as I tee off. No way. At the driving range I made Cosmas practice putting while I practiced driving the ball at the range. Of course, this means that he missed every good shot that I had, but I wouldn’t have had them had he been watching (double edge sword, am I right?).
To sum it up, pick something you would like to earn more about and explore. Do it a comfortable way so that you boost your confidence and want to come back for more. Leonardo DaVinci was famous for this. He dabbled in learning many, many new skills to keep his brain sharp. This way you can preserve your memory. This trick will work if you feel yourself slipping too. The key is to get into Alpha and ow Beta as much as possible.
What Do I Do If I Have a Really Bad Memory?
If you or a loved on are suffering from significant memory loss challenges such as dementia or cognitive decline, visit my office’s professional site at Leigh Brain & Spine for professional evaluation and treatment options. At our office we use qEEG Brain Mapping to identify if a person’s brain is stuck in a mode of memory decline and then use Neurofeedback Therapy to train it back toward the optimal performance state. A Brain Map can also show if you are using a pattern that contributes to lack of focus, one of increased slow processing speeds Delta and Theta. Anxiety and stress are caused and perpetuated by High Beta extra fast speed which shows up on the qEEG Brain Map too. The Brain Map is literally a map that can guide you toward finding a healthy permanent solution for your challenges.
For Neurofeedback Experts
How does Neurofeedback combat memory loss and cognitive decline? On a qEEG Brain Map memory loss is indicated by low power in the posterior areas of the brain. This tends to look like blue in the back of the brain on qEEG. If you see this pattern you want to train power up in the impacted areas by training production of Alpha (8-12 Hz) and Low Beta (10 – 15 Hz) in the areas. Simultaneously, you might see a pattern of increased Delta and Theta that causes working memory issues (holding info. in memory. These slower speeds are contributing to slowing of information processing. Train them down. Wahhh lahhh. Better brain performance means improved thinking and memory for your patients. If your patient is struggling with chronic anxiety it will show up on the map as red in the fast and extra fast brain speeds of Beta and High Beta. Many times the red color will be prevalent across all areas of the brain. The areas can be isolated too. Train the impacted areas down in the frequencies above 15 Hz, typically 15-20 Hz or 21-30 Hz and they will begin to feel calmer, more relaxed, and more focused. When the brain is processing information in the middle speeds your patients can achieve the sweet spot of calm focus.