Life as a new dad can get tiresome. Between sleepless nights rocking your new child to sleep and the constant nappy changes, it’s easy to slip into zombie mode. Consequently, it’s important to keep your brain active as a new parent. When your mind is sharp, you’re on top of your game and ready to nail your parenting game.
For some mind-stimulating inspiration, read on for six tips for keeping your brain active as a new parent.
Play card games to keep your mind fighting fit
Poker, blackjack, baccarat — these card games are hundreds of years old, and with good reason. Their popularity lies in their challenging nature, emphasis on skill, and the thrill of the win.
And card games are also perfect for training your brand and keeping your mind sharp. Poker, in particular, is known to help improve mental agility and concentration. Teach yourself a new card game (such as dou dizhu) or stick with a game you know. As well as keeping your mind busy, it’ll also up your skill level for your next guys’ poker night too.
Nobody to play with? No problem — OnlineCasinos.co.uk has a great selection of online casinos reviews to help you find someone to play against, no matter what time it is.
Reading maketh the new dad
Reading is the perfect activity for keeping your mind sharp as a new parent. When you watch a film or TV series, it’s easy to zone out, reading forces you to be attentive.
While it’s okay to head to your dog-eared copy of your favourite novel for some comfort reading, to really keep your mind active, try something new instead. For instance, if you usually read legal thrillers, why not give a historical non-fiction a go? It might be hard-going at first, but stick with it — the cerebral benefits are well worth it.
Stay engaged with the world
As a new parent, it’s easy to get wrapped up with your newborn. The excitement of your first child is like nothing else, and at times it can feel like you’re the only people in the world.
But it’s important to stay connected with the rest of the world. Try to stay up-to-date with current events, and read or watch the news wherever you can.
Podcasts are also a great way to stay engaged with the world and keep your brain active. There are lots of podcasts for piquing your curiosity that are perfect for a late-night feeding session.
Improve yourself with a new skill
With all those sleepless nights and late-night feeds, you’ll have more than enough time to teach yourself something new. Learning a new skill forces your brain to work, keeping it sharp while giving you a new string to your bow.
Languages are a good starting point. Free apps like Duolingo make learning French, Spanish, German, or another language easy and accessible. Plus it gives you that extra edge when you have your first holiday abroad as a family.
Alternatively, why not try something practical such as sewing or photography? These skills are perfect for new fathers — you’ll be mending a lot of clothes as your child gets older, and there’ll be no shortage of photo opportunities either. YouTube has lots of free tutorials that you can use to teach yourself. Whatever you want to learn, there’s definitely a resource online to help you do it.
Spend time with other adults
Every parent knows that when you spend time with your newborn, you inevitably start speaking in baby-talk — it happens to every new parent. And while it’s entirely natural, staying in baby mode can get tiresome.
Consequently, it’s worth making time to hang out with actual adults too. Catch up with your friends where you can. Finding time might be tricky, but even a Skype call in the evening with an old school friend is enough to keep your mind sharp and adult conversation on-point.
Challenge yourself with a good puzzle
One of the best ways to stay sharp as a new parent is to challenge it with a good puzzle. And I don’t just mean completing a 1000-piece puzzle either. Crosswords, sudoku, word ladders, and even word searches are all great ways to keep your brain on its toes.
Most newspapers have a dedicated puzzle section (although be warned: their difficulties vary depending on the paper). Alternatively, there are countless websites that offer online puzzles for you to try.
Those first few months of new parenthood can be a blur. But every dad knows that to stay on their A-game, it takes work. Take some inspiration from the tips above and keep your brain active as a new parent.