How can we improve our memory?

If you ever get a chance of making a list of “Most Embarrassing Moments”, you will write down a few incidents, which, if they could be avoided, would have made your life better. For instance, at that annual office party – you clean forgot the name of the CEO’s wife! If only you could have greeted her by her first name, not only would it have created a lasting impression, but also could have been instrumental in getting you that coveted promotion! Never mind that small stroke of luck which saved the situation and your past performance featured more prominently in the CEOs mind and not your irresponsible slip of mind.

Then, do you remember that important appointment you made for a campaign presentation and you simply forgot about it! It was your good luck that the client himself phoned to postpone the presentation by a week. Thank God for small mercies – the client fell sick and hence the postponement.

Now, don’t get into the mood of self-pity. You are not getting more stupid or older for your age. It’s just that you have to hone up your memory skills, so as to avoid such embarrassing incidents getting repeated. As per experts, there is nothing called a good or a bad memory – only disorganized thoughts. So, sit up, get organized, and before that organize your thoughts.

Forgetfulness is nothing but the failure to recollect and recall information. If you forget something, don’t blame poor memory for that. Blame the fact that you have your fingers in too many pies!

So, are you forgetful or scatter-brained? Dumb or simply suffering memory loss? In fact, you have got company. All of us have gone through the fall-out of memory loss some time or the other in our lives. It is basically an issue which has a lot to do with retentive power as well as recalling power of the brain. It could be due to information overload, over-stress, or just over-worked.

There are a lot of people who are just slow in remembering things. Its not that they are dumb or imbecile, but simply that they have not honed their skills of recall. You have to practice your ability for recall until you get it right.
An over-worked busy bee also has this habit of forgetting things especially trivia which are connected or may not be connected to their profession. Since they have too much on their plate, they only concentrate on the immediate, urgent jobs and forget the rest.

The media boom to an extent is responsible for this information overload in our brains. We can now access any kind of information, anywhere at anytime. There is this non-top flow of information from all corners that are banging on our poor heads – how much can we take anyway?

We encounter many things in our daily existence, which can be clubbed under memory tasks. These are names, birthdays, phone numbers, anniversaries, time figures (time to call the doctor) and many such, which are an essential part of our living.

The owner of a good memory is a proud man in society. Not only does his talent come as a boon in his work life, in personal life as well. Check out the lives of many successful men and women, their memory powers are gilt-edged.
Remembering names is an art by itself. Yet a name is our only placard with which we roam this world is one of our biggest and most recognizable assets. Try and do some experiments with names, if you tend to forget them easily. Next time you visit a doctor, ask for his secretary’s name, or the sales lady at the grocers. And then remember their names and call them by that when you next visit these places. See the difference it makes and the smiles it brings.

To develop the skill of remembering names, the most important thing you do is LISTENING. Listen attentively to the name, when you are being introduced. Then repeat the name to yourself a couple of times. Associate or link the name to someone you know, or a thing or any visual memory you have of a bird, or even a funny incident. And see yourself, how easily you remember a name.

While we have discussed in detail, in previous chapters, how to improve your memory skills, there is yet another proven and effective way, to do this exercise is associating names with mnemonics. Mnemonics are simple helping tools which aid in quick recall.  You use mnemonics with the help of your imagination - like associating names with size, shape, color or smell. Examples: Big Tom, Square Lily, Red Susan or YSL Renee! You can make your own mnemonics by connecting names with other elements also.
In case you have a problem remembering long numbers like your bank account or social security number, you can also create special mnemonic which will help you overcome this problem. For instance if your bank account number is 180250 – and your birthday is on the 18th. February is when you got married, so 02 is remembered and 50 is your age.

Hope this article provide you information about how to improve the memory.

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