“It is the mind that makes the man . . .” This is a quote from the Roman poet Ovid, made not long after the birth of Christ. It makes sense, doesn’t it? Our minds define and control who we truly are – our personalities; our intellectual capacities; our ability to love and feel a full range of emotions; even our bodily functions. We are, quite literally, at the mercy of our brains.
If we allow our brains to deteriorate we are losing the best years of our lives. When we should be extolling the wisdom that can only come from life experiences onto the next generations we are worried about losing our ability to remember. Baby boomers especially, have lived through amazing times — from the invention of television; our first walk on the moon; the first computers; cell phones; Woodstock and rock and roll; and so on, the list is amazingly long! What a waste, if we allow our golden years to turn to rust because we neglected to do some simple brain exercises to revitalize our memory.
One technique that is common, and you may not realize it but have been practicing it your entire life, is mnenomics. Mnenomics is simply another word for ‘memory tool’used for memorizing information that otherwise would be difficult to remember, and turn it into something easier. One example is the rhyme we learned in grade school for remembering how many days are in each calendar month: ‘30 days hath September, April, June and November…’
Another common memory technique, which many memory champions, and I personally, use quite a bit is the ‘Method of Loci,’ or ‘Memory Palace.’ This is a powerful visualization tool that has been used for centuries to store and recall information. It’s easy and fun to use, and extremely effective. The basis for this memory tool is the fact that we are more apt to remember something if we can associate it with something familiar to us.
Other simple memory techniques include:
- Become more organized — have a place for everything and put everything where it is supposed to go, like putting your car keys back in the same place when you get home
- Take notes or use note cards — in classes or for a presentation take notes and refer to them in order to recall what you learned at a moment’s notice
- Repeat and practice remembering something until it is embedded in your brain — like the name of a person you just met
- Flash cards — there are many available on and off line that can help to build your memory, and can be helpful for people of any age
- Brain Exercises — Puzzles, Crosswords, Sudoko, Mahjongg and other brain teasers are excellent ways to stretch your brain
- Video Games — Wii and games of strategy are not just for kids, and they can expand all different areas of your brain
You will find your brain is sharper when you use it, and you will be able to fight off any deterioration by simply learning and exploring the world around you.
You can learn more about memorizing and memory techniques from Ron White memory guy’s Brain Athelete packages and workshops.
LiteMind — Develop Perfect Memory With the Memory Palace Technique: http://litemind.com/memory-palace/
Strategies for Success — Study Skills Memory Techniques: http://www.alamo.edu/sac/history/Keller/accditg/ssmt.htm
Mind Tools — Memory Improvement Techniques: http://www.mindtools.com/memory.html