16 July 2012

Expanding The Mind

Sometimes it feels like in the world we live in today provides so many distractions from intelligent thought.  Turn on the tv, flip open your computer, read a newspaper...it boggles my mind how much crap is out there that you can fill your head with.  Not to say I'm above any of it (the crap).  I am a self-admitted reality tv lover (hello Real Housewives!), I've been known to pick up a trashy magazine or two for the beach or an airplane ride, and most of the time when I get home from a long day at work I don't want to be watching the news, I want to catch up on the latest celebrity gossip.

But with all those mindless distractions, my brain is turning to mush.  Add that to the fact that I'm not learning anything new at work, haven't been at school in years (a place where one traditionally is supposed to learn) and rarely find time to sit down with a good book...and it really feels like I need to challenge myself.  I guess that's one reason why I'm looking for a new job, but if that doesn't pan out soon, I will have to find another way to expand my mind.

Some ideas to keep my brain sharp are reading about something that intrigues me (religion, politics, biographies), taking a class of some sort, or learning a new skill.  I also found some interesting articles about how to save your brain from "rotting", including this one about 11 ways to expand your mind.  The top the of the list was "question everything", which got me thinking.  If you want to spend some time reading mindless gossip, catching up on reality tv or doing nothing in particular, I guess it is ok as long as you approach those activities with a mind that is going to question and process the information, and the time you spend on those activities is limited.  Sometimes you do need some time to turn your brain "off" but you need to make time to turn it "on" too.

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