Improve Your Memory & Focus

Memory Improvement

There are many ways to increase your memory improvement.  Being forgetful once in a while is perfectly normal in one’s lifetime.  As we get older it is normal to be more forgetful than when we were younger.  Your brain’s vitality and health are keys to a strong memory. Incredibly, the human brain can adapt and change even as it ages.  When stimulated correctly, it can create new neural pathways and change existing connections. This ability is called neuroplasticity.  Because your brain can reshape itself, you can boost its cognitive abilities.

Genetics, which is a factor of neurological disorders like dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, affects memory loss. However, just because you are experiencing memory loss does not mean you are in danger of dementia or Alzheimer’s. Here are 4 common characteristics of memory loss we experience throughout our lifetime that are quite normal.

Blocking – You ever have that moment when you have the answer on the tip of your tongue and you just can’t seem to focus and remember?  This temporary inability to remember a name or title seems to increase with age.

Transience – Have you noticed it’s difficult to remember things from when you were younger?  Your brain tends to maintain memories of things you use more often and forget those that haven’t been relevant.

Misattribution – This occurs when you remember the event but not all the details.

Absentmindedness – This comes down to your focus.  A great example is pulling out of the driveway and thinking of where you are going.  Then you can’t remember if you closed the garage door. Another form of absentmindedness is forgetting items that are to be completed in a prescribed time, like a meeting or taking your prescription.

The good news is, according to studies, there are ways memory improvement can occur with your diet and lifestyle. There are 5 important tips you need to know if you want to preserve your memory at any age, enhance your mental performance, improve your learning ability, or sharpen your mind.  I will share one of those tips with you now.  If you’re interested to learn about the other 4 tips, please feel free to view my short-read book by clicking here.

What’s good for memory improvement?


Physical exercise can boost thinking and memory improvement, whether directly or indirectly. 

It can directly lower insulin resistance, lower inflammation, and stimulate the release of growth factors—brain chemicals that improve the health, growth, and survival of brain cells, and the growth of new blood vessels in the brain. 

Exercise can indirectly enhance sleep and mood as well as lower anxiety and stress.  Difficulties in these areas often affect cognitive impairment.

Just like mental exercise, physical exercise also keeps your brain sharp.  By sweating it out, you raise oxygen to your brain, thereby reducing the risk of conditions that cause memory loss, like cardiovascular disease and diabetes. 

Exercise has also been shown to enhance neuroplasticity because it boosts growth factors and stimulates new neuronal connections.

Getting started

Aerobic exercise is great for your brain.  Activities that keep your blood pumping and your heart healthy are beneficial to the brain.  Regular aerobic exercise has been found to increase the size of the hippocampus, the brain area associated with learning and verbal memory. 

Physical activities that involve hand-eye coordination can improve complex motor skills.  Even the martial art tai chi—involving unhurried, focused movements, and the learning and memorization of new movement patterns and skills—has been reported to enhance cognitive function in seniors.  Cognitive function is needed for verbal reasoning, problem-solving, attention, working memory, and planning.

If you start your mornings with light exercise, you can clear out morning blues and keep your brain active.  This also protects your thinking skills and memory against the brain fog that comes with age. To overcome afternoon slumps and mental fatigue, a few jumping jacks or a short walk can reboot your brain.

How much exercise do you need? 

Moderate-intensity physical activity, like brisk walking, is recommended for 150 minutes per week to enhance memory improvement.  You can start small until you get to your goal. Begin with a few minutes a day, and then increase the time by five or ten minutes weekly until you meet your target.

Besides walking, other moderate-intensity activities, like dancing, squash, tennis, stair climbing, or swimming, are great.  Even household chores, like lawn raking or floor mopping, can keep your heart and brain healthy as well.

To keep you focused and enhance memory improvement:

  • Find a friend to hold you accountable.
  • Join a class. 
  • Monitor your progress, which motivates you to reach your goal.
  • Hire a fitness instructor if you can afford it.

You may be interested to check out the Harvard Health Cognitive Fitness Ecourse.  The course offers a 6-step plan which targets areas of the brain in different ways to boost brain health and cognitive fitness.  You can find out more information about their program by clicking here.

Make it a habit

Studies indicate that it takes about six months before you can reap the cognitive benefits of physical activities.  Make exercise a habit, just like taking prescription medication. Patience is important while looking for the first results.  Of course, before starting any physical exercising activities, consult with your doctor to make sure you are doing what is proper for your personal health status.

Memory Improvement Games

If you want to improve your mental exercise and recall information more effectively, do more mental exercises. Puzzles and other mind-stimulating games are methods of working on your brain muscle. Studies have shown that games that stimulate mental exercise enhance several aspects of your brain, including short-term memory. Short-term memory is needed to recall, remember and do quick mental arithmetic. One example of short-term memory is memorizing a phone number when writing it down is not an option.

Some brain-stimulating games include:

  • Crossword Puzzles
  • Jigsaw Puzzles
  • Concentration
  • Sudoku
  • Chess

There are also websites you can use to enhance your mental fitness. is backed by science and offers games, tests, and activities. In addition, you’ll be able to track your results. Another website similar to is Happy Neuron also has games backed by scientific research. You can research the Internet and find many websites that offer games, activities and other means to increase your mental fitness.

What Are Some Signs of Dementia?

As I mentioned at the beginning, memory loss is a common factor with age.   However, if you are concerned that you may be experiencing more than the “normal” amount of forgetfulness, here are 10 early signs and symptoms of dementia according to

  1. Memory loss
  2. Difficulty planning or solving problems
  3. Difficulty doing familiar tasks
  4. Being confused about time or place
  5. Challenges understanding visual information
  6. Problems speaking or writing
  7. Misplacing things
  8. Poor judgment or decision-making
  9. Withdrawal from socializing
  10. Changes in personality or mood

You can also watch this short video about Testing Your Memory from Lee Health…

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