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mumbai_123's avatar

How can I improve my memory?

Asked by mumbai_123 (11points) February 16th, 2010

How can I improve my memory? I often tend to forget things and work procedures. Please advice me genuinely. Thanks in advance.

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18 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Carry a small notebook and jot things down. Then, remember to look at your little notebook.

Thesilvertiger's avatar

Brain work outs aka, do puzzles, at least a Sudoku everyday.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Notebook and journal. Journal everything in your life, how you feel about it. You’ll love reading it years from now and it’s a great stress reliever.

Snarp's avatar

Combine the first three answers above. Write things down and exercise your brain. It’s not a muscle, but there is evidence that using your brain in certain ways improves its function. In addition to brain teaser type puzzles try some memory specific puzzles like the old matching game.

Steve_A's avatar

Flash cards? I guess thats more for studying but I think it is still applicable.

ETpro's avatar

Drat. I used to know the answer to that one.

CharlieGirl's avatar

Reading fiction always helps me,and in improving my cognitive skills.

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

To keep myself sharp, I like to do some of the puzzles and games on Lumosity.

mzehnich's avatar

The “ribbon around the finger” method has worked quite well for me:

Essentially, it’s just short-term memory cognitive association. When I do not have something with me to jot a note down, I will use some obscure item as a reference. How it traditionally goes is, if you want to remember something, you tie a ribbon or piece of string around your finger. Later on, when you forget why you did this, you will question yourself “why did I tie this around my finger?”, which should lead to “oh yes, to remember something” and then again hopefully leading to what you wanted to remember. If not, leave the string on and keep digging inside your head until you recall the information from memory. You will probably be surprised at how quickly you can associate some random item with a large memory bank however. The instant you see the string and ponder “why did I do this?” it usually immediately leads to what you wanted to remember, even if it was a sizable chunk of information.

Admittedly the ribbon method is kind of a gimmick, but I think it serves your brain better than simply writing down exactly what you wanted to remember.

There are different exercises you can do to strengthen both your short and long term memory. The best for long term and overall brain health, like people have said, are logic puzzles like crosswords and sudoku. I am not sure of practices for short term memory but I know it involves grouping more things into one thing – essentially, the ribbon method, only doing it in your head. The key with your short term memory is that you can only store seven pieces of information in your short term at once. So instead of “filling that space” with 7 individual “objects”, you would instead put these objects into “groups” in your mind. So splitting the 7 objects into a group of 3 and a group of 4 would only require two of your seven short term memory banks, rather than all seven.

Snarp's avatar

A technique I like is to associate things you want to remember with something with which you are intimately familiar, usually the layout of your house. A trivial example would be to memorize a grocery list by associating each item with something in your house as you walk through it. So your bed is made of butter, orange juice comes out of the faucet, your sofa is a potato, etc. The method can be extended to things much more complex than a grocery list, and it is very powerful.

buckyboy28's avatar

I play games on Sporcle and I play Brain Age for DS.

wundayatta's avatar

These things seem to be about sharpening the mind, but is that the same as improving memory?

What kind of memory do you want to improve? Long term or short term?

In order to get things into long term memory, there’s nothing like repetition. You can do the repetition in the real world, or in your mind by visualizing it, or by repeating it verbally—depending on what you want to remember.

Short term memory—from what I understand using mnemonic devices helps. I’m not sure how you figure them out. But if you are introduced to someone, you first repeat their name a couple of times, and then think of something to associate with the name, related by sound or image, and store both objects together.

davidbetterman's avatar

Eat more oatmeal…

erichw1504's avatar

Install more RAM.

buckyboy28's avatar

@erichw1504 Surely you mean add more RAM…

davidbetterman's avatar

You have to install it to add it…

erichw1504's avatar

@buckyboy28 Isn’t that what I said?

stratman37's avatar

I bought some Ginkgo Biloba the other day but I keep forgetting to take it!

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