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AGING IS A CHOICE Part 11 – Keeping Your Mind Young 

By Robert Manni

Have you heard people say “it’s all in your mind” when you feel nervous about acing a presentation or when you want to make a good first impression? Ever have friends remind you your frame of mind is to blame for creating the situations you find yourself in? Well, I’m here to say, our minds influence how we age as well. The way we view our chronological age is directly influenced by our mental age, or the sum of our thoughts, beliefs, and practices. Over the years, I’ve found it super helpful to regularly incorporate various protocols to keep my mind sharp and my outlook youthful. I can honestly say, my intellectual acuity has held steady, and in some areas, even improved.

If you’re wondering what I do to keep my mental age young and vital, here are a few daily practices that keep me sharp, thinking positive, and feeling vital.

Daily Exercise

Studies have proven that physical exercise at any age helps boost energy, improve cognition, enhance sleep, reduce anxiety, and decrease stress. You can stretch, swim, bike, dance, or take a walk to get the blood flowing and stimulate your mind. Instead of staring at the screen, where often the mind is passively consuming pre-packaged information or stimulated by mass consumerism, you could be boosting your mind by participating in a myriad of physical practices. And while you are exercising, you can listen to top-notch podcasts like  Guy’s Guy Radio or an audio book on a topic you want to learn. The choices are endless. My suggestion? Get moving and think positive.  


I’ve been meditating daily for close to a decade. Claiming that the results have been life-altering would be an understatement. My mental outlook has drastically improved since beginning my practice. Don’t just take my word for it.  Numerous studies tout meditation for strengthening the areas of the brain responsible for memory, learning, attention, and self-awareness. In addition, there are also many metaphysical benefits from meditation including stimulating creativity, intuition, and strengthening the connection with our inner self.  


Reading and learning new skills is certainly helpful to maintaining and enhancing your mental powers. That said, taking a few minutes each day to express your thoughts and feelings in writing is another gift to your mind. Studies show that writing by hand can make learning easier, help your memory, enhance your ability to express your creativity, and glean similar benefits as meditation. It’s all good… and even if it is not, write it down, write it down, write it down.

Maintaining friendships / Connecting with younger people

As we age, our circle of friends often becomes smaller. Friends change, move away, die, or simply drift out of our lives. No surprise, maintaining friendships is important. It prevents isolation, provides companionship, a sense of belonging, and gives us opportunities to share a few laughs. I know it  can be hard to stay in touch with your friends as we age, but social media provides lot of opportunities to re-engage lapsed friendships and meet new people with similar interests and values. And remember, this is about expanding your mind. Don’t limit yourself to connecting only to people in your same age group. Try connecting and conversing with younger people and learn about their perspectives on things. Young people are the future. I may not agree with everything they say, but they keep me open-minded to new ways of thinking and enjoying life. 

Our world moves quickly. It’s easy to get left behind when we’re not present, curious, and taking care of our mental skills. It’s up to each of us to particpate in activities that keep our minds young and active. If you want to maintain a healthy, youthful mind as you age, consider these tips. After all, aging is a choice.