Do you lift weights to exercise your muscles? Well, don’t forget to exercise your brain. No not with weights but by thinking. This can improve mental fitness for better decision-making and help slow down cognitive decline. Whether at home or work, if our mind is not fully focused on a particular task it can have serious consequences.
In business, we live in a cutthroat, ‘dog eat dog’ world. Every mistake we make is likely to create an opportunity for someone else and at our expense. If you work with large amounts of money, such as a stockbroker, a small mistake can prove very costly to your employer, your customers and ultimately yourself. It’s therefore important to have a healthy mind and body to handle such responsibility. You also need to learn how to manage and relieve stress at work, so you can keep a cool head when those around you are beginning to flounder.
On a smaller scale, you may have bought a few hundred pounds worth of shares, in a company you didn’t properly research as you were too tired. The results can be just as devastating, on a personal level, if things go wrong. I know… I’ve done it!
To help to avoid sliding into such pitfalls, I now try and keep my mind and body active. I regularly walk, swim and cycle to keep physically fit. To keep mentally fit and to help manage and reduce stress I play online video games. In particular, games that are not easy and require a good level of concentration, such as these examples:
In Letter Scramble you have to use the tiles to form words of between three and ten letters, to score points. There are three levels. In Level 1 you have to find 20 words. In Level 2 it’s 30 words and in Level 3 it’s 40 words. This you have to achieve before the timer hits zero. Bonus points are scored for longer words and for any time remaining, once the level has been completed. It sounds simple enough but the time pressure is a real factor and it’s easy to get letter blindness after too long. If you can stay cool during this game, then any million-pound transaction should be a breeze!
If you want to play a high-stakes but risk-free gambling game then it’s hard to beat Casino Blackjack. It’s the classic card game of trying to score up to 21, without going bust. In this version you start with chips to the value of 2000 and then bet on each hand, to hopefully accumulate more. There are five levels and each level is completed by reaching the stated goal. Of course, the odds are always in favour of the ‘house’ but a clever strategy can help move the odds back towards your side. A helpful guide is provided if you want some hints on how best to play.
These kinds of games teach us the importance of having an effective strategy to reach our goals while working under pressure. ‘Thinking’ games help us to problem solve and if we lose concentration at any point, then we probably lose the game. These skills are also key attributes required in the business world. Yet at the same time, they provide a relaxing and enjoyable escape from the everyday stresses of our working lives.
Once you’ve mastered these games then move on to some of the others available. Continue looking for fresh challenges to keep your mind stimulated and motivated.
If you haven’t considered gaming as part of your mental health and fitness, then give it a go and reap the benefits it teaches you, to use in the real world.