DMS for the Pros

Remembering to remember

How to Overcome Absent-Mindedness

But if that same person mentioned above forgets the milk, and forgets people's names, then you might think of them as having bad memories still! This is the difference between "Memory" and "Absent Mindedness." and in fact, this distinction is a lot more complex and interesting than just that.

Usually our memories are associated with a variety of other events, concepts, textures, colors, smells and emotions which all help us to retrieve the information. If we do not engage properly with the stimulus however because we are distracted then we won't lay down as many connections and will find it more difficult to retrieve.

This is the difference between 'deep encoding' and 'shallow encoding', so if you experience a lot of forgetfulness it may help to try playing around with the information you want to recall in your head and thinking about how it makes you feel and how it relates to other concepts.

Many find that mind-maps can be a great visual way to do this. To retrieve lost memories try recalling the situation you learned them in and any other events or stimulus present at the time. Short term memory however is forgotten more often and refers to the temporary memories we hold in our brain while doing maths etc.

Here we are only capable of retaining 5-9 'units' or 'digits' of information. This makes it almost impossible to remember a phone number just told to you for example as the new digits will push out the old ones. To get around this problem use 'chunking' to group the numbers into single units of information; for example 66 becomes 'double six' - pun intended -or '354' becomes 'three hundred and fifty four'.

Another trick is to try and become more "mindful" and more aware of your situation. A little experiment you can try right now is to try and count the number of times you stand up and sit down in a day. Most people won't remember to do this even once. This is how distracted and "in our heads" we are most of the time, and it's why so many of us struggle to remember things.

So try meditating and practicing mindfulness and you should see yourself become more attentive and less likely to forget as a result.

Training your memory

Tips to Train Memory and Focus

Want to quickly increase your productivity, creativity and efficiency? Then a simple tip you can use is to move your mouse and put it on your left. How can this possibly work you ask? Well for starters it forces you to use a different part of your brain - the right hemisphere to be precise which controls movement in your left side.

Over time this can help encourage ambidexterity, and that in turn can have a number of positive benefits for your brain by increasing your spatial awareness, your memory and possibly even your creativity (it improves communication between your brain's two hemispheres which has been shown to be useful in a number of studies)

As you create more neural tissue to learn this left-handed dexterity (of course, you'll put it on the right if you are left-handed!) your brain becomes better at adapting and changing, therefore making it easier to learn other new tasks. At the same time though, putting your mouse on the left side will make it more annoying to use.

This is a bad thing if you are sending work e-mails or doing other important jobs that require a mouse, but in other cases it can actually be a good thing. That's because controlling a mouse with your left hand will likely be enough to put you off going for a wander online or browsing YouTube. This in turn means that you'll probably focus more on the work you're doing and get it completed more quickly All those benefits just from putting your mouse on the left! What else can you do this easily to have profound effects on your ability to work productively and efficiently?

Just as using your left hand can enhance your creativity and memory, standing up may be able to improve your focus and help you to stay productive for longer. That's because standing up will help to encourage your heart to work harder which will promote the delivery of oxygen and nutrients around your body and to your brain.

At the same time standing up while working can have other beneficial effects outside of your productivity - it can help you to burn more calories for instance and can help to improve your posture and eliminate back problems that many associate with working in a desk chair.

Studies have shown however that sitting down promotes focus when engaging in difficult tasks, so the best way to work is to answer e-mails standing up and then to sit down when you want to sink your teeth into the meat of your working day. Oh, and getting more exercise has been shown to boost memory across the board too!

Protect your memory

Things That Can Damage Memory

When trying to enhance memory, there are lots of things you can do and many different techniques and hacks that might be successful. Often though, it is just as useful to think of the things that could be hurting your memory and to stop doing them.

Here are three things that could be destroying your memory. 1. Alcohol - Drinking can cause you to lose your memories of events that happened while you were intoxicated. This is because alcohol suppresses function in the front-temporal regions of the brain where most of our higher-order functions take place.

To recall the events of a night of heavy drinking, one of the best techniques is to actually become intoxicated again. This due to the fact that recreating the circumstances that you were experiencing when you lay down a memory can help you retrieve.

If you learned a fact in a red room then, being in a red room again might help you recall it. At the same time, if you lost your keys while drunk, then drinking a little can sometimes help you remember where you put them Over time however drinking can cause irreparable damage to the brain by killing brain cells and this can lead to the individual experiencing more forgetfulness in general.

This can eventually lead to symptoms similar to Alzheimer's disease. Dementia caused by alcohol abuse is called Korsakoff's syndrome.

2. Old Age - Age related cognitive decline is a normal phenomenon that occurs as the brain becomes less efficient at building new connections and begins losing more brain cells than it replaces. However, it is possible to slow the progression of such forgetfulness by remaining active. This means both mentally and physically active, and those older individuals who continue to play chess and read can find they maintain a better long term and short term memory.

Exercise can also stem this decline, and studies have shown that cardiovascular activity can actually improve memory and even cause neuro-genesis - the birth of new cells in the brain that was until recently thought impossible.

3. Repression - In psychotherapy the 'psychodynamic theory' of psychology offered by Freud is the one accepted as correct and this type of therapy is still common practice. In this theory, Freud postulated that our brain can use 'ego defense mechanisms' to protect our conscious mind from events or facts that we don't want to come to terms with.

Often for example we might accuse a close friend or family member of possessing the deplorable traits that we actually own ourselves. This way we remove ourselves from the focus and protect ourselves from the truth. One of the most powerful and common of these defense mechanisms is repression.

Here, rather than disguising the truth, the brain will completely block the memory so that the individual doesn't have to deal with it consciously.

Develop your super power

Congratulations on making it this far!

If the above information has been of any help then apply the below techniques to develop your super power even farther. Note: These techniques are not limited to just adults, even children can use them to acquire super powers. Imagine your child with super memory capabilities.


Subscribe to stay up to date

connect with us

stay connected

For All things Domino