Your Brain on Retirement with Ani Wilson

Introduction to Ani Wilson and Neuroscience

2:28 What happens to the brain on retirement? Your brain will have built pathways to meet your work obligations and will be very strong in those areas (and weak in areas not needed in work). In retirement, the brain may not know how to relax if this has not been part of your life when working. Brain wants to achieve something on a daily basis like you did at work; if it can’t it is unsure what to do.

4:50 How to make the transition; strategies to build pathways before retirement. New activities to activate both sides of the brain (sports, dancing, anything where hands cross the midline of the body)  to get whole brain usage. People that were planners, CEO’s, high achievers need to continue to plan in their retirement. Something that has to requires daily attention, activities that use work skills in a different context.

7:15 Find activities to train the brain to use all of the functional brain areas.

8:23 “How to find inspiration – its in the cracks – the little things in life.

9:04 Not Achieving – brain becomes less active, doesn’t produce neurochemicals that activate happiness, can lead to depression, Find something to be excited about, even looking at our failures to better in the future. Always seeking = learn something different that you haven’t done when brain becomes neutrally excited by new ideas, tasks, activities, creates new neural pathways.

10:48 Brain never stops growing unless you stop learning. Brains want to old neural pathways which may no longer be needed. Find new things to build new pathways; happy chemicals are released.

11:29 Contribute in Retirement = having a purpose leads to better longevity and happiness. Every time you feel valued because of your contribution, oxytocin is pumped through the brain, we feel more happiness being with people. Leveraging your brain power to contribute to your happiness .Neuroscience research indicates that being in nature moves your brain into an alpha state which encourages creativity.

16:21 Finding commonality with others; brain wave changes. Don’t isolate yourself; find your community.

17:20 Smile 3 neurochemicals are released when you smile. Oxytocin, serotonin, dopamine.

18:50 Tips for Planning Retirement

  • Explore what you were excited about when you were 18

  • Go to local community centres, explain your skills and they will match you with an organisation that needs those skills

  • Ask other retired people what they really enjoy doing.

  • Find excitement/inspiration in the small things. Finding the wonder in each moment. Being present, breathe, interaction with others, Look for amazing moments. How you respond to life is how it will respond to you.

23:30 Share your knowledge of what you have learned here. Treat your brain well: feed it correctly, maintan hydrated, breathe.