If you are wondering how to improve memory power, then the following best ways to memorize faster is all that you need to become successful.
You may learn a ton of things in your entire life but you will remember only a few. This is a fact. Unless and until you are a supernatural being, you will face this situation in every phase of your life.
How to Improve Your Memory Power?
There are some astonishing tricks that can take your memorizing powers beyond ordinary level. In today’s harsh and competitive environment, where delivering 100% is a must you have to ensure that your memory powers are beyond ordinary.
This article will go through the following topics in a chronological manner:
- How and Why we forget things?
- How can you remember everything that you learn?
- 10 best practices to improve your memory.
How and Why we forget things?
As you know that throughout a day you learn a lot of things, some are necessary and some are not. There was a psychologist named Hermann Ebbinghaus. He did a lot of studies on human retention power and quantified his results into a set of curves known as Ebbinghaus’ curve; more popularly known as forgetting curve.
The Ebbinghaus’ Forgetting Curve proves that just one hour after learning a thing, there is a high possibility that we may forget more than half of the learned information. And within a week we may remember only 20-25% of the total.
10 best practices to improve your memory
The more you use it, the stronger it gets. But you can’t lift the same size weight every day and expect to get stronger.
You’ll need to keep your brain constantly challenged. Learning a new skill is an excellent way to strengthen your brain’s memory capacity.
1. Learn new things more often
Well, you can learn anything and everything but try to extend your boundaries in a more interesting way. Anything that you learn must push you out of your comfort zone and should provide something positive.
This is a list of certain things that I have tried myself. Hope that you also find it interesting
- Learn a new music instrument
- Do blogging and work with different webmasters
- Play mind games like Chess or Sudoku
- Learn a new language
- Participate in some kind of sport activities
2. Repeat and Retrieve
Whenever you learn anything new you have to go for the repetition in order to preserve your learning for a longer duration. Repetition is being used as a tool by many students in order to retain their studies.
Repetition reinforces the connections we create between neurons. Repeat what you hear out loud. Try using it in a sentence. Write it down and read it aloud.
As per research, repetition along with retrieving practices increases your retention power to the next level.
Practicing retrieval creates more long-term and meaningful learning experiences. Hence, repeat and retrieve together for an enhanced level of retention.
3. Use Acronyms, Abbreviations, and Mnemonics
Mnemonics, Abbreviations, and Acronyms are some of the real age-old techniques that help you memorizing things faster and retain it for a longer duration of time.
A simple example is the word VIBGYOR, which is a mnemonic of the colors of the rainbow (Violet, Indigo, Blue, Green, Yellow, Orange, and Red). Like this, you may use several different abbreviations and acronyms in order to memorize.
4. Divide the Whole into Parts
Whenever you are feeling that the thing that you have to memorize is long enough and you are facing difficulties in memorizing it totally, break the whole thing into small parts.
Let me give you an example. You may have noticed that it’s much easier to remember a phone number if the 10 digits are divided into three separate parts (e.g. 555-637-8299) rather than one long number (5556378299).
This technique is very useful and you may see that by applying this method you will be able to memorize really fast and also retain your memory for a long time.
5. Learn to Construct a “Mind Palace”
Maybe some of you have heard this term a several times if you are familiar with a very renowned English series, “SHERLOCK”.
Here Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock) uses this technique in order to remember a hell lot of things which may be impossible for an ordinary human.
The idea is to associate certain things with a certain place. For example, if you are in your room, try to connect a thing you are learning to something in your room. Repeat it a few times.
After that, try to recall what the room looks like in your memory, and repeat the things you learned this way.
For more instructions on how to create mind palaces, watch “2006 U.S. Memory Champion” Joshua Foer’s TED talk.
6. Use Audio-Visual technique
Another tactic of memory connoisseurs is that they don’t just rely on one sense to help retain information. Instead, they relate information to other senses. The most effective one is the audio-visual technique.
Suppose, you are learning a theory of newton’s third laws of motion. Now simply memorizing the theory from a book doesn’t gurantee a longer retention of the same.
But, if on the same time you are understanding the theory with the help of a rocket launching video, you will certainly retain the theory for a very long time.
7. Be an Organized Person
An organized person has an easier time remembering. Let me give you an example. being a blogger I have to work on various fields which are related to blogging.
Works like, scheduling my blogs earlier than its releasing date, replying my fellow guest bloggers on time, sharing and re-purposing my content on social media, etc, etc. are part of my daily schedule.
So, I use google task which creates a checklist of all my works. This helps me in organizing my daily tasks and increases my efficiency as well.
Checklists are one good tool for organization. Manually writing down your checklist (instead of doing it electronically) also increases the likelihood that you’ll remember what you’ve written down.
8. Drink More and More Water
Your brain is made mostly of water. Water acts as a shock absorber for the brain and spinal cord. It helps our brain cells use nutrients. So just a small amount of dehydration can have disastrous effects.
Mild dehydration has been shown to cause brain shrinkage and memory impairment. Therefore, most of the nutritionists also suggests higher consumption of water for proper brain functioning.
Aim for at least eight to ten glasses per day, or more if you’re very active.
9. Practice Yoga more often
One study from 2012 found that a mere 20 minutes of yoga significantly improved participants’ speed and accuracy on memory tests.
Participants performed significantly better on the tests after yoga compared to aerobic exercise. The study, however, was limited by its narrow sample size of just 30 young, female students.
Yoga also emphasizes breathing from the diaphragm, which helps maximize our oxygen intake, thus improving mental function.
10. Eat Good Fats to Power your Brain
Diets such as the Mediterranean diet which is rich in good fats include the ability to improve memory and reduce the risk of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.
These diets focus on eating:
- Nuts, Almonds
- Olive oil or Coconut oil
- Fatty fish, such as Salmon and Sardines
Fatty fish are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s play an important role in building brain and nerve cells. They’re essential for learning and memory and have been shown to delay cognitive decline.
Some of the Hand-picked topics for your self-improvement are listed below:
- How to improve your productivity: Step by Step approach
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Our memory is a skill, and just like other skills, it can be improved with practice and healthy overall habits. You can start small.
For example, pick a new challenging activity to learn, incorporate a few minutes of exercise into your day, maintain a sleep schedule, and eat a few more green vegetables, fish, and nuts.
The next time you have to study for an exam, try one of the techniques suggested by memory champions, like chunking, mind palaces, or retrieval.
Talk to your doctor if you notice that you’re making many more mistakes than usual or have trouble completing simple daily tasks, like cooking or cleaning.