Challenge Yourself: Keeping your Brain Active

We already know that puzzling has multiple benefits—it’s relaxing, fun, and a good way to keep your brain in tip top shape. In fact, puzzles (and the variations of puzzles from Sudoku to Scrabble) are second on Wiki’s list of things to do to exercise that big mass of nerves inside your cranium.

The more you challenge your brain, the more new nerve pathways you form. The benefit of this has some amazingly positive benefits: namely, it can help you avert cognitive decline.

So here’s some things (easy things!) you can start doing in your daily life to make things a little more interesting, and make your brain work just a little bit harder.

1. Get strategizing! Play strategy games like chess or bridge, Poker or Scrabble.

2. Do new things to perk up your brain. Brush your teeth with your eyes closed or use your non-dominant hand to brush your teeth (or build a puzzle)! Take a new route to work and stop living life on autopilot.

3. Read more. Books, magazines, blogs (this one counts!) or the newspaper. Set little goals: ten pages of your novel a day before bed, an article with your lunch break meal, whatever—just fit in some reading time!

4. Start memorizing more. Stop relying on your cell phone and try to learn a new friend’s phone number. Or your grocery list. Or how about the US presidents in order?

5. Listen to classical music because it increases brain activity more positively and helps with spatial intelligence.

How about trying something new with your puzzles? Creative Crafthouse has a huge selection of brain teasers that will push you in entirely new ways! For instance, check out this brain puzzle:

Brainwave. Ages 10+. Difficulty: 4 out of 6.

From the info page: This fellow really has a lot on his mind. Can you help him organize his thoughts? You must insert the 10 pegs into his mind such that no color is repeated on any of the rows, columns, or diagonals of the triangle on BOTH sides at the same time. Each peg has a different color combination on its ends.

7 thoughts on “Challenge Yourself: Keeping your Brain Active

  1. Susanna

    April 11, 2013 1:21

    I love the Creative Crafthouse games and puzzles! I don’t have this particular one but a lot of the others – the Tower of Hanoi (think that’s the name) is one of my favoritesa long with color wheel.

    • Susanna

      April 11, 2013 2:32

      oops meant color shift not color wheel (though that one and the others in that series are neat too!)

      • Megan Fajardo

        April 16, 2013 1:16

        Glad to hear you love Creative Crafthouse! They’re a great brand with so many fun puzzles! Let us know if you try any of the others and how you like them!

      • Susanna

        April 16, 2013 2:03

        I have a lot of their puzzles – soma cube is chalening but do-able, the half hour puzzle I’m still struggling with off and on, the big boat kumiki is SOLID – beautiful work – the snake is fun but I like the med premium the best for my hands – love the simple 7 pennies and wooden nickels puzzlesa nd of course the solitaire peg puzzles – the color match ones are nice but still haven’t solved any of them – some are a little hard to distinguish the colors(probably just me with bad eyes and poor lighting), crazy quilt is fun and similar to the royal flush – each has pieces that are in “L’ shapes with 2 that are just rectangles and can’t have the same color in any row or same card in any row,save the queens is similar but has 4 pieces that can flip over(making 8 choices) and have a star cut out and that star can’t be in the same row. the flowers puzzle that has the frame is HARD even with the cheat sheet I still struggle with this one! hmmm the math snakes are challenging – somehow the shorter one got solved at my job – several of us would pick it up and fiddle with it thenput ti down to go work – I came back in the break room and realized it was solved but none of us knew who had solved it! we sat it down so quick then didn’t keep track of who fiddled iwth it last. have the larger one but haven’t solvedit (carry it in my purse) have the domino blocks but haven’t done them yet – would like the coasters puzzle but haven’t seen that one on your site yet…the ONLY puzzle of theirs I have and don’t really like is the golf one – the one with the pretty painted wood pieces you slide around.I got the larger one and for me the pieces dont’ like to slide around easily -they’re light weight and want to flip and there’s no groove to get my fingers to grip and have to use my nail on the side pieces. the get my goat puzzle is similar but moves a lot better IMO – just not as colorful. the shut the box puzzles are fun and educational too! I play those sometimes just to brush up on my math!

        sorry so long but I like these puzzles! I also like a lot of stuff from gameswright,smartgames, and thinkfun!

  2. Susanna

    April 16, 2013 2:06

    I think the ones I caught onto the quickest and or course like the best(!) are tower of hanoi, 7 pennies, and wooden nickels and I think it’s because they’re so methodical.also the solution is wrong in the wooden nickels puzzle – I watched the video and at the very end he changed it. I’ve tried to do some reviews of these on your website but it’s kinda hard to explain exactly w hat I like about them. For me the fact they made in the US and are wood does it for me for the most part!

  3. Susanna

    April 16, 2013 2:09

    hee hee forgot dewey’s delimna (sorry can’t spell it) for the book lover- I still wan to get one personalized but wasn’t sure how itworked with having to call and all that – it says you can name 4 authors and their books – that sounds awesome! and cute puzzle though some of the heights are a tad hard to distinguish imo

  4. always10list

    April 25, 2013 4:40

    Nice. I’ll try this game. It is good to keep up with memory games. I did try bonzilla game and I quit just before the game finished. its really hard to figure out.

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