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Mentalrobics™

You exercise your body to stay physically in shape, so why shouldn't you exercise your brain to stay mentally fit? With these daily exercises you will learn how to flex your mind, improve your creativity and boost your memory. As with any exercise, repetition is necessary for you to see improvement, so pick your favorite exercises from our daily suggestions and repeat them as desired. Try to do some mentalrobics every single day!

For each item in the list below, close your eyes and try to get a mental picture of the object. Try to make it as clear as possible. Are there any sounds, smells or tastes associated with this item?

1. A red rose
2. Your father
3. A cow wearing pants
4. Elvis Presley
5. The world's biggest sandwich

Once you are done, grade yourself on how clear each object appeared in your mind (clear, vague, nothing). The next time you see one of these items, pay special attention to it and try to memorize its features, then repeat this exercise and see if you've improved.

There are some items in the list that you are certain to have never seen before. These are designed to flex your ability to put several memories together into one image.

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el-ee-mos-y-nar-y

adjective :: Relating to charity; intended for the distribution of charity

noun :: One who subsists on charity; a dependent.

"An author ought to consider himself, not as a gentleman who gives a private or eleemosynary treat, but rather as one who keeps a public ordinary, at which all persons are welcome for their money." --Fielding, Henry

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Most people have heard of Pavlov's dog. Pavlov would ring a bell every time he fed his dog. Eventually, the dog would start salivating after hearing the bell, even if no food was in sight. This experiment shows how the dog's mind made an association between hearing and taste. This happens in humans too. The brain automatically makes associations between the five senses, in addition to emotional or social triggers. Once these associations are created, they can be recalled simply by experiencing one of the original inputs. In the dog's case, a sound triggers a memory about taste. Certainly you have had the experience where a smell, a flavor, or a sound has brought up a memory from your childhood.

In order for us to remember a new fact, it must be associated with one of the 7 different inputs described above. Each different sensory input causes different connections between neurons in the cerebral cortex, and the more inputs you have, the stronger your memory of that fact will be.

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