What is Intellectual Health and How Can You Improve it?

When you think about health and wellness, things like exercise and nutrition come to mind. But your intellectual health plays a big role in creating sustainable health and happiness. It’s what pushes you to move forward and think critically as you navigate different parts of your life. When you activate and improve your intellectual health, it gives you the power to create, innovate, and grow. Keep reading to find out what intellectual health is and six steps you can take to improve it.

What is Intellectual Health?

Intellectual health is a key part of the wellness wheel alongside six other dimensions of wellness such as emotional and spiritual wellness. You can use the wellness wheel as a tool to understand and dive into the different components of health and well-being.

What is Intellectual Health? – Project School Wellness

The intellectual dimension of wellness encourages you to take part in creating and engaging activities. So, to improve your intellectual health, you want to stimulate your mind throughout your lifetime. A good stretch and runaround are just as important for the mind as it is for the body. When you maintain your intellectual health throughout your day, it promotes creativity and leads to a happier life.

Regular mental stimulation may even help to combat cognitive decline as you get older. Research shows that learning a new skill may help stave off dementia and brain deterioration. Your brain is still able to grow in adulthood. Keeping your brain active and stimulated by learning new skills, playing brain games, or experiencing a different culture can all help to improve your intellectual health.

Your intellectual wellness is a big part of the wellness puzzle. When you set aside time to focus on yourself and expand your learning, you’ll feel the benefits. By improving your critical thinking and knowing your self-worth, you can feel good about yourself and have a positive attitude toward life.

Journaling For Mental Health

During late June 2020, forty percent of US adults reported struggling with mental health issues or substance use. With the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, many people’s mental health and well-being have suffered. Things like fear, worry, and stress are all normal reactions, especially during such an unprecedented time. When you combine this with social isolation, some people are really struggling.

Woman is making notes in cafeteria for intellectual health.
Journaling Is Simply Writing Down Your Thoughts And Feelings So That You Can Understand Them More (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Journaling for mental health is a great way to help you gain more control over your emotions. Journaling is simply writing down your thoughts and feelings so that you can understand them more. 

One of the best things about journaling is that anyone can do it. All you need is a pen and paper, and you can start jotting down your thoughts. Research shows that journaling can help manage anxiety, stress, and depression. It allows you to understand your problems and fears and identify negative self-talk and behaviors. 

Six Steps to Improve Your Intellectual Health 

If you’re looking to improve your intellectual health, remember to be open-minded to new skills, cultures, languages, and activities. When your mind is fully open, you can delve further into your own critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, and learning. Here are six steps to improve your intellectual health. 

Start a Healthy Debate

A simple conversation with a friend counts as a brain exercise. Bring up a current affair with a pal and start a healthy debate. Even if you disagree with their viewpoint, you are still expanding your mind by having a lively conversation.

Two happy young female friends with coffee cups conversing in living room at home.
Even If You Disagree With Their Viewpoint, You Are Still Expanding Your Mind (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Learn a Foreign Language

Learning a foreign language is challenging and requires a lot of effort, but it can be hugely beneficial for your intellectual health. As you learn new ways to communicate, you’re expanding your mind. During lockdown, the idea of learning a new language may have crossed your mind. There are plenty of apps and online resources to get you started. One of the most popular language apps is Duolingo. This app offers free courses in over thirty different languages.

Pick Up a New Musical Instrument

Have you always wanted to play the guitar? Or maybe the piano is your true calling? Either way, picking up a new musical instrument helps to promote creativity and improve your intellectual health. Music has a powerful effect on your mind. When you learn to create new sounds and patterns, it can boost your mental health.

Man playing guitar while sitting on sofa in light living room.
Picking Up A New Musical Instrument Helps To Promote Creativity And Improve Your Intellectual Health (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Play Brain Games

Exercise your brain with games like sudoku or a crossword puzzle. There are plenty of apps, books, and online resources for brain games. Working through patterns and solving puzzles is a great way to stretch your brain muscles. Maintain and improve your intellectual health with a regular brain puzzle. 

Read For Fun

The benefits of reading are endless. Reading for fun in your spare time is good for so many aspects of your life. Whether it’s a classic or the most recent bestseller, reading is one of the oldest and most effective ways to boost your brain health. It helps to increase your mental clarity and intellectual capacity, build vocabulary, and prevent cognitive decline.

Woman reading a book and sitting on the windowsill.
Reading Is One Of The Oldest And Most Effective Ways To Boost Your Brain Health (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Try a New Online Class

Expose yourself to new ideas, skills, and concepts. The internet is awash with free content for you to learn. Maybe you want to learn more about coding and data, or perhaps how mindfulness could benefit your life. Whatever you want to know, there will be a course on it. Try websites like Udemy, Coursera, and Linkedin Learning for continuous learning opportunities.

Exercise Your Mind and Stay Intellectually Healthy

Your intellectual health is just as important as your physical and mental well-being. There are multiple pieces to the happiness and wellness puzzle. By exercising your mind, learning new skills, and reading for fun, you can improve your intellectual wellness. Take the time to write your thoughts down and keep a journal. All of this helps you feel more in control of your emotions and develop a greater understanding of your own mind. When you continue to stretch your brain muscles, you promote creativity, problem-solving, and nurture your mind so that you continue to grow and thrive.