8 Ways to improve our memory

Are there ways to improve our memory?

How many times have we just entered our office but we can’t remember why we went there in the first place? How many times do we see a person who we have known for years, yet stare at him when he talks to you about the last time we were together? How often do we forget where we have parked? Is there something we need to say to someone and when the time comes for us to speak it just slips our mind? How many times have we been to the super-market and get back with different things than the ones we wanted?

Or maybe there is one among us who belongs to the exceptionally rare category of people who remember the spelling mistake typed in the first paragraph of the text you had learned by heart in your final high-school exams? Who has never had to write down a phone number or a birthday date because he can simply remember them? Who rarely spends more than one hour studying because he has already absorbed most things straight from the lesson?

Undeniably, a strong memory is a matter of genes but that does not mean that the rest of us have no chance of enhancing our memory. Especially, while attempting to learn a new language, the more we practice our memory the better performance we will achieve.

Let’s check 8 different ways to improve our memory:

  1. Let’s organize our studying.

According to research, our brain stores directly a huge number of pieces of information, which are often irrelevant to each other. For this reason, most of them never find their way towards long-term memory and just fade away. We can, while attempting to learn a new language, try to minimize the degree that this happens. How can we do that?

Our memory strengthens when we organize very well the information that we receive. During the learning of a foreign language, we can, for example, gather in one page of our note-book, all vocabulary related to traveling. In another section of our note-book, we can write model- paragraphs which could be used as introduction or conclusion of essays along with linking words and phrases.

And a small colorful secret here? In every separate category that we have created, it is really useful to underline the words with a specific colour of pen or highlighter. For example, when we try to remember a phrase that we use in order to buy a ticket, for example, our memory will remember that this type of information was marked with a light blue colour, for example, and it will detect it a lot more easily. If we are writing a test and we are struggling to remember a specific grammatical structure, we could have probably marked all peculiar grammar structures in red and therefore retrieve it like that from our memory. Trust me, it works!

  1. The fine art of Mnemonics.

Maybe, most of us have never heard of the term “mnemonics”, which stars in most articles about memory improvement. However, that doesn’t mean that we have never used or been taught the way of this specific technique.

Simply put, a mnemonic is a phrase, very simple in meaning and structure, but each word which it is composed of symbolizes another thing. For instance, we are trying really hard to learn in which order we should place the adjectives that describe a noun in English. To achieve this, we learn the word “NOSASCOM”.

N= Number

O=Opinion

S=Size

A=Age

S=Shape

C=Color

O=Origin

M=Material

So, that word which clearly has no meaning at first glance, offers us an immediate answer when we are solving grammar exercises. On our own, when learning a new language, we should feel free to create this kind of words or phrases.

  1. Let’s hold a powerful image in our minds.

An effective way to enhance our memory is to memorize the image that we have in front of us when we study. Of course, when we refer to “the image”, we don’t just mean the small picture or photograph that happens to be on that page. In this case, when we say “the image” we describe the surroundings around us while studying. What is there next to our note-book? Which pen have we placed between the pages of our book? Which chapters of our book have we underlined or highlighted? Is there a small marking or spelling mistake on the page that we are reading?

All it takes is one moment to take our eyes off the sentence that we are reading, in order to observe all these things and for a minute to try and capture that image. When the time comes for us to remember the piece that we were reading that moment, our mind will automatically reproduce that entire image and it will a lot more easily bring back what was written there. A little test will convince you!

  1. Let’s read out loud when we study.

Usually, most of us, when attempting to learn something, we read it in our mind and then try to learn it by heart. We even close our books or eyes and try to repeat what we have just read by heart. This way helps us a little bit, but it can be a lot more helpful and effective and also aid towards strengthening our long-term memory, if we change it.

Our mind stores a lot more easily and quickly, when from the very first time we read, we read things out loud, slowly two or three times, and right after that, when we close our books, to repeat it out loud. This will not only help to learn things faster but it will help us to generally remember more.

  1. Let’s create mental associations.

With the term associations, we mean small simple images or thoughts we form in our mind when learning something new. That small image, design or idea will help us remember a lot faster what we want. Let’s offer here a small example. In the English language the word “frankly”, means “honestly”. At this point here, we could picture in mind a young boy called “Frank” who always says the truth. If we do that, every time we see the word “frankly”, this will come to mind and we will remember what this word means.

What is the trick here to create this kind of helpful images? The secret is to form either really plain or extremely extravagant pictures so that our mind has better chances of recalling them.

  1. Let’s teach it to someone else.

It is common knowledge that we will never learn anything better than the moment we play the role of a teacher and teach anything to someone else. This simple process does not only guarantee to perfection what we already know but to also improve our memory. How is that possible?

It is simple. When we take the responsibility to transmit knowledge, our brain maximizes its concentration and memory performance so that it can transfer all that is necessary to the other person. This peak of performance and the required revision made, after completing this task highly enhances our memory.

  1. Let’s practise.

As all of the skills that we acquire, keep improving over timer with continuous practise, the same happens with our memory. If we aim to develop our memory, then we shouldn’t just remember this only when we study. During the day, we can test ourselves, by not writing everything down but actually trying to remember, for example appointments that are not of outmost importance, phone numbers and minor tasks. Surely, the first few days the result will not be impressive, someone could say probably disappointing, but day after day our memory will be trained and we will remember more and more things. Why not start from today?

  1. Let’s reward ourselves.

Unfortunately, most of us forget to reward ourselves when we achieve something. We usually feel that we are not worth it, that it isn’t necessary or that our effort will be rewarded by someone else, a parent, a teacher or even a boss. Let’s not wait any longer. Let’s be the ones to give ourselves a small gift when we achieve a small goal. So when training our memory is the goal and we are slowly getting there, let’s reward ourselves. And after a small delight, our mind will be even more ready to achieve a lot more goals.

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Comments
  1. Aphrodite Varouxi says:

    The most interesting and inspiring article.Very helpful for a person who doesn’t have the best memory in the world like me. Continue like this❤️

    1. Dora says:

      I will help you improve your memory my star!You can count on it! Be ready to rule the world!!!

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