Image Courtesy: Saad Faruque
Memory. What an amazing thing. I first became fascinated with memory about 5 years ago when I borrowed a book from my younger brother about ways to improve your memory. I was most interested in the section about improving your memory by association.
Build a Memory Bridge in Your Mind
Now, there are several nutritional supplements that can help improve your memory:
- Omega 3
- Ginkgo Biloba, etc.
However, I feel that working on your mind will have more benefits than solely relying on food to improve your memory. But sure, these supplements will definitely help. In fact, I believe that my large consumption of green tea over the years has helped significantly to keep my memory sharp.
Memory by association is exactly what it sounds like. Ever have someone tell you their name and literally 5 minutes later you’re trying to figure out what his or her name is again? That used to happen to me all the time — frustrating.
Now here’s the trick: When you first learn a name, address, birthday, etc.. associate it with something totally different, but similar enough to build a memory bridge — or, neural net — in your mind.
Here’s a name example:
I meet “Barry” at the bar. I immediately think of my older brother “Dari.” I say to myself over and over “Barry, Dari, Barry, Dari, Barry…” Since I’ve known my older brother for 24 years, there’s no way I’m going to forget his name (yikes! I’d hope not..). And now that I’ve associated “Barry” to such an already strong point of memory in my mind, chances are I’m not going to forget “Barry.” I’ve built a neural net in my brain and that’s exactly what a memory is in your mind: a string of connections.
Although it may seem obvious, memory is formed within your brain. So anything that generally improves your brain health may also have a positive impact on your memory. Physical exercise and engaging in novel brain-stimulating activities — such as the crossword puzzle or Sudoku — are two proven methods for helping keep your brain healthy.
8 Tips for Improving Your Memory By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. – PsychCentral
Here’s another example about remembering birthdays:
I learn that Jen’s birthday is “January 27” and I know that my birthday is on “December 26″. So this is all I have to remember: ” plus 1″. Why “plus 1”, you ask? Because her birthday is 1 month ahead and 1 day ahead of mine, so that’s all I need to position in my mind: “Jen’s birthday is ‘plus 1’ mine”, I say to myself a few times.
Basically what you’re doing with these techniques is creating your own concept of association to remember things. It’s really that simple. Once you have the concept in your mind, that memory is going to be solid as a rock! It’s not going anywhere. And you can literally come up with as many concepts as you like, for any particular situation.
Cheers to your improved memory!
Have any memory techniques of your own? Please share.
David Askaripour, a prominent blogger based in New York, writes on the subject of natural healing among other things. His work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Television Talk Shows, books and local news channels.