Mental Flexibility and Success

Mental Flexibility and Success

Mental flexibility is an essential executive function.

I crashed into my own inflexible thinking recently and was surprised because I think of myself as a pretty flexible thinker.

For the time-challenged, predictable habits and patterns are key to successfully getting things done and living a balanced life.

Here’s what happened. I had a lovely exercise routine that supported my mind and body. Then, in a flash, it all got disrupted. Picking up a ten-pound box of dishwashing detergent was the culprit. I injured the tendons and  radial nerve in my right arm. Suddenly I couldn’t do yoga or use weight machines that require my arms. I slipped into a funk of frustration.

I missed my exercise and yoga community, and my brain and body lacked the energy to stay focused. When I noticed I was hitting sugar for a boost, I had a firm talk with myself. Okay. I couldn’t do what I had been doing. So now what? It was time for some flexible thinking about my problem.

Instead of using the machines at the gym, I started using the hula hoops for 30 min.

I could still see my friends and keep up the exercise routine. My daughter’s running inspired me to start jogging again. My leg muscles aren’t in shape, but each time I go out I can run a bit further. I challenge myself to make it to the next mailbox or the next corner before I pause. In yoga, I’m using supports and doing poses and moves that I CAN do without causing further injury.

If you find yourself “stuck” it may be your brain’s challenge with flexibility. My advice is to pause. Take a deep breath and imagine another solution to your challenge. If your brain keeps going on in a circle with no new options, get some help. Another person’s point of view may help you get past your own brain’s executive dysfunction.

When I am stuck, I hear my mother’s voice: “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” Mental flexibility helps solve problems!

About the Author Marydee Sklar

Marydee Sklar is the president of Executive Functioning Success and the creator of the Seeing My Time Program® and the Set Up Success and Seeing My Time® planners. She is an educator and author of three books on executive functions, as well as a trainer and speaker. Marydee has more than twenty-five years of experience working with students and adults with executive function challenges.

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Life fitness store says July 6, 2011

Want to shed weight, there certainly is basically one method in order to accomplish doing it in my very own view – HULA HOOPING. Clinical research is at present getting taken out inside the States in order to show that frequent hooping improves core strength, flexibility, posture, cardio conditioning and fortifies back muscle tissue. In addition to these excellent results, it is actually enjoyable to perform and a wonderful stress reliever! In other words, hooping is actually a whole body and mind work out, no question it appears in the list of leading ten ways to get fit! Jogging, biking as well as traditional exercising equipment such as fitness treadmills and stair-climbers load the entire body in one, steady direction. The body soon gets used to the challenge, will go into auto pilot and uses much less energy and fewer muscles, in the end reducing the effectiveness of the work out. Hooping, nevertheless, is unpredictable, irregularly loading the entire body and making it constantly adjust and make the body move in diverse directions. Therefore each hooping session is a new, challenging exercise.

    marydee says July 6, 2011

    I love my hoops. I have them at home too and use them to activate my brain when I’ve been sitting at the computer deep in concentration. I set a timer for ten minutes and hoop to music. After my hoop break I’m ready to focus again.

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