Everyone can improve their memory by playing games that involve memorization. The following are 10 of the best such games, but any game with a similar goal will work just as well. There’s no right or wrong answer to which one you should play first; pick whichever appeals most to your interests and personality and start practicing!
10 Ways to Improve Your Memory is a blog post that gives 10 tips and tricks for improving your memory. The article also has an infographic with pictures of the tips. Read more in detail here: how to improve your memory.
The following, with the exception of “Memory Aids,” is taken from Donald A. Laird’s Increasing Personal Efficiency (1925). The original chapter has undergone some re-formatting and condensing.
The manner you remember, rather than how often you utilize it, determines the power of your memory. What you want to do is discover the most effective methods for remembering. After you’ve learnt them, stick to them until you’ve imprinted them as automatic techniques of remembering that you don’t have to think about.
Memory, in and of itself, is unlikely to be enhanced. Our innate abilities restrict us, but the methods in which we remember may be enhanced. That is the key to unlocking the mystery.
1. Make a conscious effort to recall.
The individual who said “it’s the small things that matter” may have meant to be amusing, but he was also stating a reality about memory improvement. Your aim in remembering is the first “small thing” you should fix.
Try to remember this: retention is mostly determined by purpose. Make a mental note of this since it exemplifies one of the initial stages in establishing a functional memory.
When one wants to recall anything, his memory performs considerably better than when left to its own devices. It has been discovered that when someone attempts to remember anything, he remembers 20% better for a few hours. This little effort increases memory by as much as 60% for extended periods of time.
This is something you should do every time you come across anything that could be valuable. Say to yourself when you are presented to someone, “I must strive to remember him,” and you will remember him far better. When you see a good deal in the newspaper, say to yourself, “I must remember this,” and you’ll save money and the humiliation of forgetting.
It’s not fair to complain about a bad memory until you’ve done your hardest to make the most of what you have. The capacity to recall information is present. It is up to you to take advantage of the situation.
2. Recall the new through recalling the old.
Can you remember Italy’s shape?
Can you remember the outline of Germany with the same accuracy?
You can recall the form of Italy considerably better since it was not a novel shape when you studied it. It was just an old-school boot. You had nothing fresh to recall when you learnt this. You connected a new thought about the form of the nation with an old one you already had in your brain.
In this situation, the key to your stronger memory is that you remembered the new via the old. This is a critical memory aid that should be used on a regular basis.
When did the Chicago World’s Fair take place? You are most likely unable to recollect. I’ll teach you how to integrate the new with the old so you can easily remember this date. This fair was held to commemorate the 400th anniversary of America’s discovery. You’re probably aware that America was discovered in 1492. That was a long time ago. The Chicago fair was held a hundred years later in 1892, although the actual year of the fair was 1893 due to a year’s delay in the construction of the structures.
Isn’t it a lot more convenient than saying 1893 over and again? It is not only more convenient, but it also leaves a more lasting impression. It’s also more long-lasting. Isn’t it far more meaningful to you now than it would have been if you had just used sheer force and remembered the year 1893 without connecting the new memories to the old ones?
Do you know how to say dog in German? It’s a hund. This is readily recalled by tying the new to the old in the following way: Hund is similar to hound, and hound is a long-forgotten recollection of yours. With a single stroke like this, you’ve created a long-term memory of a foreign word.
Not everything fresh can be simply linked to previous memories. However, the most important thing for you to do is seek for any possible connections. Do not recall things as if they are completely new; instead, refresh your previous recollections until you find a connecting connection. As a result, the new will be simpler to recall, and you will have reinforced your old memories by going over them again.
How will you recall this memory aid if you link it to the ones we’ve given you?
When was the Chicago World’s Fair, and why was it held there?
3. Develop a diverse set of interests.
You saw a lot of folks you didn’t know at the circus. Which of these do you think you’d recognize if you saw them again? The overweight lady and the human skeleton, most likely.
Allow the fat lady to instruct you on how to improve your memory. Because you paid more attention to her than to the normal-sized people, she was remembered whereas hundreds were forgotten. She was strange and intriguing. This led you to focus your attention on her, giving her a more vivid impression than if she had simply gotten a fleeting glance.
What did you read in the newspaper the other day? Only the ones that drew your attention are likely to be remembered. As a result, most readers remember the news for its novelty rather than for its significance. You’ll also find that the commercials you remember are the ones that are huge or distinctive.
Because they pique our curiosity, the distinctive home or the noisy vehicle are remembered better. Because attraction keeps attention, and attention improves the vividness of our memories, the fascinating public speaker is remembered. Interest and the attention it attracts bring otherwise mundane things to life. People who have a lot of strong interests recall things better than those who just have a few weak ones.
You probably have problems remembering names because you feel embarrassed when you are first introduced and focus on your appearance and clothing rather than the name. Make it a point to remember a new acquaintance’s name and face whenever you meet someone new in the future.
This is a good approach to test your interests: what can you recall from the daily paper? Is it largely about sports? If that’s the case, it’s because your interests are there. Is it anything to do with the theater? If that’s the case, you’ve got your own set of interests. Is it the really important things that you remember?
Develop an interest in whatever you read or hear to improve your memory. Maintain this interest throughout your life, and enhance the vividness of your memories by focusing on just one subject at a time and proceeding slowly until you feel a strong impact has been established. Haste is a waste of time, not a source of vitality.
Three average impressions are remembered better than one vivid one.
4. Rehearse the points you’d want to recall.
Do you use memory aids to help you remember things? Do you merely glance at the statistics or do you repeat them when you need to remember something? Do you jot them down and give them any thought? If you look at them and say to yourself, “How intriguing, I need to remember this,” you are boosting your memory. You will not, however, have strengthened it.
Talking through what you’ve read at the table can help you remember the news of the day. By talking over the commercials, you may reinforce your memory of the finest marketplaces. By chatting about the movies you view from time to time, you may reinforce your recollections of them.
My student just conducted some research that indicated that after learning items that are both heard and seen, one recalls 15% more after a week. By just going over what he has read or heard, anybody may strengthen his memory in a very easy method. Not only will this improve your memory, but it will also offer you something to speak about, perhaps transforming you from a conversational bore to an intriguing person to be around.
A physician who is the director of a hospital with 1,200 patients is one of my pals. This is a significant achievement in and of itself. From the psychologist’s perspective, the fact that he has a strong recall for names is more essential.
By receiving each name via his eyes, hearing, mental representations, and writing, he reinforced and enhanced his recall for names. He never forgot a name he remembered when he became good at it.
Do not just respond “how ‘de’ you” when you are introduced to a stranger and want to remember their name. As many times as you can, say his name. “Glad to meet you, Jones,” disregarding decorum. You may improve your memory by repeating the name as well as hearing it.
You are marginally strengthening your memories if you have been laboriously writing down items you wish to remember, but stronger recollections have been discovered to arise from repeating and going over the things to be recalled. Try it for yourself by talking over the important news of the day, then thinking over the same news the next day, and you’ll be astonished at how much you’ve improved.
5. Bring up recollections from your recent past.
Here is a simple memory test for you to try: What did you read in the previous section? Can you recall what came before that, and what came before that? If you go through your reading again in your head, you’ll see that you have a hard time recalling what you read even six hours earlier. Remembering what you read six hours ago is a bit more difficult than remembering what you read two weeks ago.
This exemplifies a crucial and very useful memory rule. For some reason, one forgets the most quickly just after remembering. Unless one refreshes his memory in the meanwhile, one forgets more on the first day after remembering than he would forget over the following thirty days. For them, the quick loss of memories is typically devastating.
Brushing up on your memories shortly after memorizing is the most effective way to minimize fast memory loss. If you’ve read anything intriguing, don’t wait until you’re ready to speak about it to bring it back to mind. Within half a day of making the initial impression, you may revive them and make them permanent.
If you have school-aged children, spend some time at the evening meal discussing what their teacher taught them throughout the day. If you do, the children’s information will be much more helpful and long-lasting.
Make the most of your free time by revisiting recent experiences. When you have a minute to spare, you may put it to good use by delaying the forgetting of your new memories.
When you’re out strolling, think about the interesting things you’ve read, seen, or heard. Instead of reading in the vehicle, use the opportunity to reflect on your own growth by going through your experiences. It’s simple to daydream, and it’s even easier to daydream over memories. It will take some work to get into the habit of dreaming about – or reinforcing – your memories, but once you do, it is a simple, rewarding, and entertaining practice to maintain.
Every evening, a fruitful half-hour may be spent reflecting on the efficacy of the day’s events. The memories that are resurrected in this manner will turn iron into steel.
6. Recite the information you wish to recall.
Would you want your memories to be 1.5 times stronger than they are now? If you repeat everything you want to remember twice, you can enhance them by this much.
Wouldn’t it be great if your memories were twice as powerful as they are now? If you repeat what you want to remember three times, you can more than quadruple their power.
Even if there are declining results, repetition, which is an old standby in memory improvement, is proven to be of great utility. However, repetition is not the most effective memory enhancer. Before repeating anything, be sure you understand it completely. Although a layperson may recall complicated medical terminology by repeating them aloud, is the memory worth anything if the concepts are not fully comprehended?
Do not consider the idea that repeating what you need to remember is childish. You must repeat them if you want strong recollections. If you can’t remember things after reading them or mentioning them just once, don’t assume your memory is bad. Repeat the content you wish to recall well to reinforce your recollections. That’s how you remembered the multiplication table, which is likely one of your most enduring memories.
“Glad to know you, Mr. Jones,” you may say numerous times after being introduced. Mr. Jones, we were just discussing tariffs.” As a result, you’ve used the name twice. When you call Jones by his first name, he feels honored, and your memories are enhanced.
Use repetition liberally if you want all of your memories to be as strong as our recall of “two times two equals four.”
7. Make a mental note of the meanings.
If you approach it correctly, your sense will increase your memory, and your memory will improve your sense.
When reading the market pages, someone who does not grasp the language of finance has a difficult time recalling what he reads. Similarly, if he is unfamiliar with sports, a description of a game in the sporting section will be forgotten. This is due to his inability to comprehend and perceive these topics.
I was with a bunch of chemists a few days ago. My buddy and I discussed the topic the next day. I couldn’t recall much of it, but he couldn’t recall even a single sentence. I couldn’t recall it since I didn’t understand what they were discussing. Because the dialogue had made sense to him, my chemist buddy recalled it.
By remembering meanings, you may give your memory a boost. Can you recall this phrase: “Use your senses to strengthen your memory”? Are you able to recall this: Improve your sense memory? One sticks with you because it makes sense to you. The other contains the same terms as the first but is far more difficult to remember since it has no significance.
When you hunt for the meaning, you will remember it faster; when you memorize the sense, you will remember it longer. Use a dictionary to help you understand what you’re reading. If you don’t grasp what the term or phrase means, study it until you do. Instead of looking for words in your newspapers and publications, look for meanings. In talks and speeches, look for the meaning. You won’t be able to recall all of the minister’s words, but you’ll be able to recall the gist of his speech.
Put this into practice right now by reading one of the editorials for its meaning. It will make more sense in your thoughts, which will make it simpler for you to remember. Try to cultivate the habit of reading for meanings over the following several days. Don’t worry about the words; they’re only significant in the sense that they convey meaning.
8. Memorize as soon as possible.
When does your memory fail you the most: first thing in the morning or last thing at night? Are you able to remember as rapidly in the afternoon as you are in the morning?
Last year, I conducted an experiment with 112 of my students in order to address these issues. The research lasted six weeks and required about 5,000 tests.
I discovered that the ideal time to memorize for ideas is in the morning. Memorizing in the afternoon is around 5% less efficient, while memorizing in the evening is about 6% less efficient. For individuals who get up at seven a.m., the ideal time to memorize was determined to be between eight to 10 a.m.
Because weariness is at its lowest and there are fewer fresh stimuli in the nervous system, it is probably best to learn in the forenoon.
Sunday seems to be the worst day of the week for recalling information. This is most likely due to the fact that we are taking things so lightly on that particular day that our mental machinery isn’t fully warmed up and functioning. Memorizing first thing in the morning, just after waking up, is ineffective since the cerebral machinery isn’t yet warmed up.
Why not wake up an hour earlier than normal, exercise a little to get warmed up, and study then rather than later in the evening, when memory efficiency is 6 percent lower?
Remember that your retentive abilities wane as you go from waking to sleeping, so plan your major memory training properly.
9. Have a good mindset when it comes to memorizing.
Do you have a hard time remembering things? Do you find it difficult to recall a name when you have one? Are you concerned that you may forget anything important, such as a speech or some shopping items?
This mindset makes memorization more difficult and raises the likelihood of forgetting the exact things you want to remember. Your brain efficiency is heavily influenced by your attitude.
According to research conducted at the University of California, one’s mental efficiency improves when he convinces himself that the activity he is doing is enjoyable rather than difficult. Of course, the task itself cannot be altered, but having a pleasant approach to it substantially increases the effectiveness of the mental life in doing the work.
You’ve probably seen someone stand with his heels to the corner of the room and bend down to touch his forefingers at the level of his knees. Now, as long as he does not believe it is an extremely difficult or impossible trick, he can perform it easily; but, as soon as there is a throng surrounding him arguing that it is a difficult stunt and that it is impossible for him, he finds himself unable to accomplish it. His attitude has made a simple trick difficult.
It’s the same with memorization. A youngster who believes the item he must learn for Sunday school is difficult will take twice as long to remember it as a child who believes it is simple. Things will be remembered easier and for longer if you see utilizing your memory as a game rather than a chore. No youngster should be raised to believe that mental work is difficult or unpleasant, and any adult who believes this should alter his mind immediately.
If you can’t honestly and genuinely alter your inner attitude, just “faking” a happy disposition can assist. When you see the “drudgery” mentality coming over you, try adopting this mindset that aids your efficiency.
You’ll quickly notice that seeing memory and all mental activity as fantastic fun has become a genuine and permanent attitude after you’ve gotten into the habit of doing so. It ought to.
Why not pretend that studying, remembering, and thinking are enjoyable activities?
Make it a habit to “overmemorize.”
Students, in particular, and, to a large degree, all of us, seem to believe that remembering too much is bad. As a result, we see the student learning just enough to recall his courses the next day, and the salesperson remembering the names of his new clients just a day or two later.
We appear to seek the simplest solution and learn just enough to remember for a few hours or days, which leads to a lot of forgetting. As soon as you can correctly repeat the name, date, or information, you should stop remembering. Even if you think you know it well, spend some extra time remembering it.
What do you remember about the Civil War history you learned in school? Probably just a bit since, like the rest of us, you were studying just enough to recall the lesson in time for the recitation the next day. This is how a lot of education gets squandered. Education should be a lifelong pursuit, yet it is regrettably short-lived. This is due to the fact that pupils are not taught the importance of remembering.
Unless it is overmemorized or other measures are made to prevent it from fading, information learned well enough to be recalled tomorrow will not be remembered a week later. After you’ve gotten a handle on what you’re reading or learning, go over it again. It is via this further memorization that the memory will become permanent.
The physician who has all of his material in his head is the one who overmemorized in college; the physician who needs to check his books often is the one who just remembered enough to pass his exams. The engineer who needs to refer to the pocket handbook on a regular basis is the one who hasn’t memorized enough.
You recall some of the things you read in this book today. Review them all at once and overmemorize them if you want to recall them tomorrow and make them a part of your permanent knowledge.
Make it a habit to overmemorize; it’s a “factor of safety.”
Listen to Nelson Dellis, a memory champion, talk about how to improve your memory in this podcast:
Memory is one of the most important cognitive skills. It can be improved in a variety of ways, and these 10 tips will help you improve your memory. Reference: how to train your memory.
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