Are you great with faces but bad with names? Do you have to write everything down or risk forgetting what errands need to be run today? You’re in the right spot.
Nelson Dellis, a professional memory consultant, was an everyday guy who became interested in techniques to improve his memory. He is now the two-time USA Memory Champion. He beat mental athletes from around the country in timed events for memorizing numbers, a deck of cards, a list of 99 names and faces and an unpublished poem.
Here are three of Nelson’s techniques for memorizing complex information:
How To Remember Where You Put Your Keys
We often forget where we put our keys or glasses (or sanity) because we do these things so mindlessly. Take a moment to activate your brain and say something out loud. Moving in a memorable way, like stomping your foot, and adding a bizarre auditory component (“yee-haw!”) will create multiple associations in your brain that will be hard to forget.
How To Remember Where You Parked Your Car
Convert a piece of information into an image in your mind. Take a mental snapshot of the stationary objects around the vehicle. Then, convert the location number into a familiar image. If it’s parked on Gold Ramp, Level 4, visualize the Fab Four wearing gold suits and performing on the hood of your car. When you’re ready to find the car, it will be much easier to remember the mental picture than an abstract phrase.
How To Remember Names And Faces
Make an effort. When you meet someone new, confirm that you have heard and can pronounce the name correctly. Then ask how it’s spelled and if it means something or has a cultural history. To really cement it in your brain try to use it, either by introducing the person by name to someone else or by using the name to direct a question to them. Nathan, do you live in the area?
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Regularly exercising the brain keeps it growing and spurs the development of new nerve connections that helps in improving the memory.