What is Cognition? The word cognition comes from the Latin word “cognoscere”, which means “know” or “knowledge”. When we talk about cognition, we usually mean everything related to knowledge. In other words, collecting data we receive through learning or experience.
What is Cognition Load? Meaning and Definition
The most widely accepted definition of cognition load is the ability to process data through perception (the stimulus we receive through different senses). Cognition includes various cognitive processes, such as attention, learning, memory, reasoning, language, decision-making, and so forth, which are part of our intellectual development and experience.
Different cognitive functions play an important role in these processes: perception, attention, and memory. Cognitive processes can occur naturally or artificially, consciously or unconsciously, but they usually happen quickly, they are constantly happening, and we are not aware of it.
For example, when we are walking down the street and when the traffic light is on, we begin a cognitive process that is asking us to choose—go across the street or not. This is when the decision-making process begins—wait for the light to change to green, or look left or right (again redirecting attention) to see if cars are coming.
Can Cognition Be Improved?
Below is shown the means and strategy that are focused on the cognitive state:
- Decrease the Level Stress
Stress increases the level of cortisol, which attacks the myelin axon and impedes the successful transmission of information. If we were able to reduce the level of stress in our life, we could also improve cognitive function. A positive attitude makes us more creative when we need to solve a problem and it probably makes us cognitively more flexible.
Meditation can also help our cognition load. It requires concentration and attention, which, as we have said, is important for creating new functional circuits. Studies support this idea and meditation is associated with improvements in attention, memory, executive functions, data processing speed, and cognition in general.
- Physical Exercises
During some exercises, we can also repair cognition. They do not have to be extremely tiring. In fact, a walk of 45 minutes, 3 times a week, can repair memory and reasoning (executive functions), while if practicing Tai-Chi, you improve mostly executive functions.
- Brain Training
Brain training is a term that is commonly encountered nowadays. The evidence now testifies that the brain is a flexible and renewable, and that while you are old, your brain is able to maintain and even improve the current level of performance of the cognitive function. Our brain has several different daily routine tasks that are constantly repeated, which makes the brain to be effective and create direct links to facilitate the performance of these recurring tasks.