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Mental calisthenics important for healthy mind

Posted 1/27/2011   Updated 1/27/2011 Email story   Print story

    


by Airman 1st Class Heather Holcomb
81st Training Wing Public Affairs


1/27/2011 - KEESLER AIR BASE, Miss.  -- Editor's note: This is the fourth in a series of articles about personal wellness.

Amind is like a smoldering pile of timber--if it isn't constantly fed with sparks and fresh lumber, it will burn out.

Lutrician James-Davis, education and training specialist at Keesler's education office,  said her favorite quote from Frederick Douglass is, "It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men."

Similarly, it's easier to build an active mind now than repair a stagnant mind later.

Although intellectual wellness has gained less publicity than physical wellness, a healthy, active mind is as essential as a healthy active body.

Ms. James-Davis said, "Essentially, intellectual wellness is focused on learning. Any activity that helps you explore the world around you, learn more of yourself and expand your mind in any way supports healthy intellectual wellness."

Howard Gardner's research on multiple intelligences changed the idea that people are either intelligent or not and presented the idea that people just have different learning styles.

The multiple intelligences are broken down into linguistic, logical-mathematical, musical, bodily-kinesthetic, spatial, interpersonal and intrapersonal.

Linguistic intelligence is the ability to learn from written and spoken words which is the most traditional form of learning. People with this intelligence are more likely to enjoy reading a book or completing word puzzles.

Logical-mathematical intelligence is the ability to learn through reasoning and  calculating. People with this intelligence are more likely to enjoy solving complex puzzles and mathematical problems.

Musical intelligence is the ability to understand, write or play music. People with this
intelligence are likely to enjoy playing an instrument, singing or composing music.

Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence is the ability to learn through movement or first-hand experience with a task. People with this intelligenceare likely to enjoy building, gardening or hands-on crafts.

Spatial intelligence is the ability to learn from observation. People with this intelligence
are likely to enjoy drawing and working a jigsaw puzzle.

Interpersonal intelligence is the ability to learn from interacting with other people. People with this intelligence are more likely to enjoy group activities such as team sports or
group discussions.

Intrapersonal intelligence is the ability to learn from oneself. People who possess this intelligence are likely to enjoy quiet self-reflection and journaling.

The key is to find what sparks your interest and be creative with it.

There are many Internet and print resources available to learn more about multiple
intelligences and help determine which best fits you.

In today's age of passive stimulation, intellectual wellness requires just as much
conscious effort as being physically fit.

Ms. James-Davis said that a good way to find a creative outlet is to bring a fresh  perspective to activities you do on a regular basis. For example, television can be translated to either writing a script or putting on a play. Iif you like to cook, try creating new recipes and  combining ingredients in a new and different way, or if you like fashion, try sketching designs or sewing an outfit.

Another way to be intellectually well is to further formal education.

"Without education, improvements and progress would never be achieved," Ms. James-Davis said.

Keesler offers many resources including the education office, arts and crafts center,
auto hobby shop, Bay Breeze Event Center, and McBride Library for people looking to stir up their creativity and stimulate their mind.

For more information, visit www.keeslerservices.us.



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