How to stay young and other brain hacks #StuffWeLearn
Stop what you're doing right now and watch this video, and enjoy the luminous back up singing of none other than Michael Douglas, Danny DeVito and Cybil Shepherd.
Great, now that that's done, we can get onto some fun facts.
You know how time seems to go faster the older we get? That's because the brain encodes new experiences into the memory, but not familiar ones. When we're young, time seems to go super slowly because everything is a new experience, whereas the routines we tend to pick up later in life ensure that time flies by. The good news is that you can hack this system - want to stay young? Just keep having new, unfamiliar experiences.
The word "amuse" literally means mindless. The root of the word, "muse" means to think or ponder, but the prefix "a" makes the word mean its opposite, as in "amoral" or "asexual". So you could tell someone to go switch their brain off by saying "amuse yourself".
What is a game? It's hard to define, but a smart old French sociologist named Caillois defined these six necessary characteristics of the state of play, which we at 42courses love so much.
1. It’s voluntary (you’re not forced into it)
2. It’s separate from the routine of life
3. It’s uncertain - the results can’t be pre-determined
4. It ends as it begins
5. Suspends ordinary laws and behaviours
6. Involves make believe and imagines realities that players set against real life
So stay curious and don't forget to play a little every day. It'll keep your mind young.