Improve Your Memory (Part 12)

It is really very difficult to remember Lists and Long Numbers all the time. With advent of computers which can keep lists and long number stored and the same can be retrieved whenever we require. But if this facility is not available, only human memory can help but with weak memory, what can you do? Only repentance is there. For improving our memory, we may need various systems like:
• Link Method
• The Number/Rhyme Technique
• The Number/Shape Technique
• The Alphabet Technique
• The Journey Technique
• The Major System

Using the Tools:

Remembering lists are what many mnemonics are for. You can code almost any information into these mnemonic lists. All that you need is the imagination to come up with the relevant associations.

To memorize short lists, use:

• The Link or Story Methods
• The Number/Rhyme System, or
• The Number/Shape Method

To remember intermediate and longer lists, use:

• The Alphabet Technique, or
• The Journey Technique

As with lists, using mnemonic systems, remembering numbers becomes extremely simple. There are a number of approaches, depending on the types of numbers being remembered:

1. Short numbers

The easiest, but least reliable, way of remembering numbers is to use simple Number/Rhyme images associated in a story. A better way is to use a simple peg system, where, for example, you can associate digits from the Number/Rhyme System into positions organized with the Alphabet System.

2. Long numbers (e.g. Pi)

You can store long numbers most effectively with the Journey System. At a simple level, single numbers can be stored at each stop on the journey using Number/Rhyme or Number/Shape images. At a more advanced level you can increase the number of digits stored at each stop by using the Major System. By using all the simple techniques together you should be able to store a 100 digit number with relatively little effort. Using the more powerful systems, holding it to 1000 digits might not be too much of a challenge.

3. Telephone Numbers

These can be remembered simply by associating numbers from the Number/Rhyme system with positions in either the Alphabet Technique or the Journey System. You can then associate these with the face or name of the person whose number you are remembering.

For example, to remember that someone’s phone number is 735-3458, I can imagine myself traveling to their flat: with my destination firmly in mind, I envisage the following stops on my journey:

1. Front door: the door has sprouted angel’s wings, and is flying up to heaven! (7)
2. Rose bush: a small sapling (tree, 3) is growing its way through the middle of the bush.
3. Car: some bees have started to build a hive (5) under the wheel of my car. I have to move it very carefully to avoid damaging it.
4. End of road: a tree (3) has fallen into the road. I have to drive around it.
5. Past garage: Someone has nailed a door (4) to the sign. Strange!
6. Under railway bridge: the bees are building another hive (5) between the girders!
7. Beside the river: A rusty farm gate (8) is blocking the road.

Often, we can laugh these small incidences off, but why settle for that? Researchers may have just uncovered a simple way to improve your memory during sleep. Neuroscientists (brain specialists) at Northwestern University recently conducted a small but interesting study that demonstrated that playing sounds associated with objects (such as the sound of keys jiggling) during a person’s sleep helped their memory regarding these items when awake.

The sleep-memory connection certainly is not a new scientific concept. Researchers have concluded over the years with various forms of sleep-memory studies and interventions that, basically, improved sleep equals improved memory.

Here I will review the basics of “sleep hygiene” and some sleep-memory “games” – and hopefully help you to not only sleep more soundly, but also remember where those car keys are in the morning!

Step by Step Instructions
• Things You’ll Need:
• A review of your sleep pattern. Ask your sleep partner!
• Possible medical evaluation for any sleep disorders such as sleep apnea
• “Brain Games”

• Step 1

Start a good night’s sleep with a routine ritual and good sleep hygiene. Getting ready for bed should be a winding down of your day and not a rehashing of events either great or small (see article in Resources below).

• Step 2

• The brain needs its nourishment.
• Make sure your sleep memory is not being diluted by a physical issue such as the common condition of sleep apnea Sleep apnea can literally range from brief to prolonged periods of breathlessness during sleep that deprives your brain of much-needed oxygen.

Consider oxygen “brain food,” and if your brain is not getting the “food” it needs, it will take the partial “food” that is available and use it for vital functions. So your brain is actually very smart; it takes whatever oxygen or “food” is available and utilizes it for life-sustaining functions first, before it bellies up to the memory bar!

• Step 3

Games are not just for kids. Brain games can actually help with memory.
• Have someone play a simple recording of your car keys jiggling while you are asleep. This is a simple way to “replicate” the study done at Northwestern University to see if listening to sounds associated with objects during your sleep can improve your memory. The recording should be played after you have fallen asleep and needs only to at the “whisper” level of sound. One or two playbacks should do it.

• Step 4

Play some “brain games” while you are awake. These are exercises for the mind that activate several different neurological functions and “pump them up,” which in turn helps with memory during sleep.

Tips & Warnings

• Never take chronic or recent-onset “forgetfulness”
for granted. It could be a sign of an underlying medical condition.
• Do not be afraid to let your medical provider know you may be having more-than-normal memory issues. Simple tests and treatments are available.

Be Happy – Improve Your Memory For Easy Remembering Lists And Long Numbers.

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