By Tiffany Davis, Contributing Writer
While we are in college we are oftentimes so focused on studying and earning good grades that we forget about our intellectual wellness. When discussing intellectual wellness, we often mistake it for learning or the amount of knowledge we have accrued in our current life, but it is so much more than that. Intellectual wellness includes our ability to learn and grow from experiences while utilizing various intellectual capabilities. It encourages personal creativity while also focusing on stimulating mental activities. In order for people to be considered intellectually well, they must be capable of using resources available to them to expand their knowledge and improve their skills along with expanding their potential to share with others.
Our intellectual wellness is important because it helps to encourage learning and it inspires our exploration. It also helps to stimulate a person’s curiosity, which helps to motivate him or her to try something new and develop an understanding of personal relationships and the relationship held with his or her environment. So how do we improve our intellectual wellness? It’s easier than you may think. Intellectual wellness is about doing things that expand your view of the world and the way that you think. It’s about learning to be creative in something that you enjoy, which in turn expands your mind and your intellectual wellness.
To help you improve your intellectual wellness, Illinois State University created a small list of activities you can do:
- Put down your textbooks and read a book for fun!
- Spend time debating an issue with a friend, choosing a viewpoint that is actually the opposite of the way that you think about the topic. When you focus your attention on a belief that is different from your own, it expands your thought process and boosts your intellectual wellness.
- Learn a foreign language. When you spend time focusing on different ways you can communicate, your mind will expand and grow.
- Play a board game or a card game. It doesn’t matter if you play alone or with friends; what matters is that your mind is thinking, which means that improvements are being made to your intellectual wellness.
- Learn to play a musical instrument. Music has a powerful impact on our minds and it encourages creativity.
- Keep a journal and write down your thoughts often.
- Do a crossword puzzle or a Sudoku puzzle. Even though these are leisure activities, they stimulate your brain. They have been proven to boost intellectual wellness because you use an immense amount of brain power to complete them.
Intellectual wellness is something that is developed through participation in a multitude of various activities, many of which can be done here on campus or in the local community. Whether you are watching a performance at the Hett, attending a brown bag and listening to a speaker, playing a board game or working a puzzle at the library, taking the time to read for pleasure or learning a new skill that allows you to be creative, you are improving your intellectual wellness.