The majority of college students tend to have two distinct approaches to summer once the spring semester is over with: to continue powering toward by taking summer classes and knocking out credits, or dropping academic matters entirely for a few months. Now, both of these black-and-white strategies have their advantages and disadvantages, and we completely respect Kent State University students for choosing one over the other.
Maintaining Your Brain
With the spring semester far in the rearview mirror (and true summer having recently begun), now is a great time to touch on something that many college students would rather avoid thinking about: how to keep their mind sharpened during the off months. Those who continue to take classes throughout the summer months won’t really have this problem, but for those who empty their brains of any academic knowledge from May to August, it’s worth keeping your brain in check. Here’s why:
The Importance Of “Mental Exercise”
According to the concept of mental plasticity, your brain is like a muscle. You “use it or lose it,” so to speak, and a brain that isn’t being exercised will eventually regress in its natural state. In other words, your brain can become duller over time when it isn’t used in a healthy yet challenging way. It’s important to intellectually stimulate yourself, and that leads us to the main part of today’s blog post.
Below, Kent’s Best Apartments, your source for the best student-friendly apartments in Kent, offers several great ways to keep your mind sharp before the fall semester rolls around. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team at any point!
Effective Ways To Keep Your Mind Sharp During The Summer Months
Watch Worthwhile Content
When it comes to mindless, downtime entertainment, nothing beats the convenience of turning your Roku TV on for some Netflix or Hulu. But instead of defaulting to watching The Office or Parks and Recreation for the 8th time, we challenge our non-summer-class-takers out there to try and stick to more educational, worthwhile productions.
Though there are thousands and thousands of selections out there to choose from, many of these selections are well-produced, thought-provoking, educational documentaries. Choose something that appeals to your interests, and give it a watch! Make sure that you’re learning something new instead of watching the same things over and over.
Read, Read, Read
Of course, you’ll want to limit your TV time in favor of reading something. Whether you have an e-reader or you’re hitting up the library for some old-school physical books, reading is one of the single best ways to keep your brain active and healthy over the summer. Plus, it’s a nice accompaniment to hanging out at the pool!
Remember that reading can be as enjoyable and worthwhile as you’d like it to be. We strongly recommend avoiding subjects that you don’t like, and sticking with books, biographies, memoirs, articles, and other literature related to your interests. This way, you’re more inclined to read based on genuine interest rather than obligation. Challenge yourself to read 10 different books before the fall semester starts back up!
Do Something Creative
Putting information into your brain is a great way to “work it out,” but another great way to flex those mental muscles is to do something creative (and fun, too). Do you have a dusty instrument in the corner of your room, or perhaps an old set of colored pencils and a sketchbook that hasn’t been touched in months? Now is a better time than ever to access these creative resources and make something original.
You don’t have to create the perfect work of art, either. Simply expressing yourself by jamming around on your guitar or sketching whatever comes to mind can serve as an effective creative outlet, and for the purposes of keeping your mind sharp, that’s what matters the most. Even journaling your thoughts or acting on a creative story idea you’ve thought about is a really effective way to exercise your mind through creative actions.
Keep Up With The News
Yes, the news can often be depressing, and sometimes you may feel inclined to stick your head in the ground and forget everything that’s happening in the world. However, it’s really important to know the current state of affairs in the world, and it also happens to be an easy way to read multiple articles on a daily basis. Additionally, paying attention to the news encourages critical thinking, a skill that’s necessary for academic success.
Just remember to check out multiple news sources, cross-reference information, and ultimately, form your own views. Take what you’re told with a grain of salt; it’ll make you an informed citizen and a strong thinker come the fall semester.
Exercise And Stay Active
Though exercise offers many different physical benefits for the human body, there are tons of mental health benefits that science is still trying to wrap its head around. The endorphin boost that you get from a sustained, elevated heart rate doesn’t just help to melt away your stress and add to your confidence, but studies have shown that exercise can help increase neuroactivity and even establish new connections in the brain. Don’t believe us? Look it up!
We’ll be honest: it’s much easier to socialize, as a college student, when you’re surrounded by thousands of other college students. But when you’re sticking around in Kent for the summer, your number of social opportunities logically decreases. It’s important to make friends as best as you can and make sure to get out of your apartment to spend time with other people. All too often, people tend to get in a routine with work where they’ll keep to themselves after a long day, and we’re encouraging you to meet new people and get out as often as you can this summer.
Of course, socializing shouldn’t be a chore, but it truly is healthy to get out of your comfort zone and exercise those social muscles. In turn, doing so helps keep your brain in good condition. Plus, you’ll probably make a few friends along the way that you wouldn’t have otherwise met. It’s a win/win!
Ready For A Great Summer At Our Apartments In Kent?
We are! If there’s anything that Kent’s Best Apartments can do to help you this summer, please don’t hesitate to connect with us.