When you think of the word “learning,” does your mind tend to turn to grade school or college? While these formal settings provide plenty of educational opportunities, learning should not be limited to a particular age group or setting. Elder Care Alliance recommends that you engage in it throughout your life. Here are some benefits you can enjoy by making lifelong learning one of your goals.
Improves Brain Function
Your brain is one of the most important organs in your body, so it’s essential to maintain it and strengthen it whenever possible. One of the benefits of making learning a priority throughout life is that it can sharpen your intellect and improve brain function. Watching documentaries, reading thought-provoking books and learning new languages can stimulate neuron production in your brain and help you make new connections.
Consistent cognitive stimulation can also reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Whether you have a family history of dementia or want to maintain optimal brain health well into your senior years, lifelong learning is one of the best ways to keep your mind sharp as you age.
Maintaining good self-esteem is important as you mature, and learning new skills can help you feel great about yourself. Whether you learn how to play a new instrument or you decide to enroll in a professional cooking course, learning any new skill is a reason to feel proud of yourself. Learning new things can also boost dopamine and improve your mental health.
Provides Opportunities for Social Connection
YoYou’reore likely to develop lasting social connections when you practice lifelong learning in a social environment. Building and nurturing social relationships is especially important for seniors who may no longer have loved ones living in the same home with them. Meaningful social connections are essential for maintaining good mental health.
Improves Physical Health
In addition to boosting your mental health and confidence, learning throughout your lifetime can also improve the health of your body. Reading for just six minutes can slow down your heart rate, release muscle tension and reduce stress levels. The more educated a person is, the lower their rates of chronic diseases, anxiety and depression tend to be. So, to enjoy better overall physical health, aim to learn something new every day.
Promotes Greater Quality of Life
There’s something immensely satisfying about being engaged in lifelong learning. Whether you’ve always wanted to try pottery or finally decided to learn how to write that book you’ve dreamed of writing since childhood, there’s never a better time to do those things than now. Making learning an integral part of your senior experience can help promote a higher quality of life. It can also bring feelings of great fulfillment and accomplishment to your life.
So, what are you waiting for? Choose one thing you want to learn more about and start learning!