4. Try something new
If you’ve ever wanted to pick up the violin or learn Spanish, now is the time to do it. Learning something brand new—particularly an instrument or a language—after the age of 25 is a great way to keep the brain lively, and the harder you find it, the better! “The fact that it is effortful is good for the brain,” explains Dr. Rockwood. Think about learning to salsa dance: you may have to do the basic steps hundreds of times, but at some point, you’ll be able to stop counting and start dancing—that’s when you know your brain has got it down pat. Until then, your brain is busily building all sorts of important new connections. Then, when you’ve mastered the skill, it’s time to take up something new.