It can be so frustrating, annoying and humiliating when you do not remember something that you have studied for days or something that you thought of a few hours ago.
Whether you are studying and need to remember Newton’s laws of motion or whether you are going to the grocery store and need to remember which foods to buy, I’m going to give you a simple secret to remember anything you want very easily.
Remembering By Association and NLP
It is far easier to remember something by association than it is by just cramming it into your head. An image, a sound, a smell, a taste or a touch are helpful ways of remembering something. When you hear certain songs on the radio, I am sure that you have certain memories attached to them. When you smell a certain perfume, I am certain it makes you think of somebody. This is how our brains work, they associate senses with information.
NLP (short for neuro linguistic programming) is a form of hypnosis that can be used to ‘anchor‘ ideas/emotions/information to an action or thing. Okay, that sounds complicated. Let me explain:
The term ‘anchor‘ means to make permanent, to engrave it into your memory. (Just like a boat uses an anchor to stay in one position). While many ‘anchors’ occur naturally, (like the example of perfume and songs on the radio I mentioned above), with knowledge of NLP you can consciously create anchors for anything you want.
I am not an expert on NLP and am not going to give you exact processes how to create anchors for yourself. However, I find it to be a very interesting subject and it is definitely worth buying a book about. (Read more about NLP on Wikipedia).
I spent some time with NLP a few years back, and I created an anchor after having a really good night that I always wanted to remember.
The anchor I created was a firm squeeze on my left inner-elbow and up to this very day, whenever I squeeze my left inner elbow I immediately think back to that night and relive it very clearly. I’m honestly not making that up and I find it incredible that NLP can actually do things like that. Mind-blowing!
A Simple Secret To Remember Anything
The Strings Method
I mentioned ealier that we remember things easily if we associate them with something. This will make you understand why the following method is so effective.
Let’s take an example of meeting someone for the first time over coffee. You do not know anything about each other but you want to get to know each other and have a fun conversation. I don’t know about you, but often I don’t even remember someone’s name the first time I hear it.
Here is how to make sure you remember alot about someone or something from the very moment they start to give you information:
- As the other person is talking to you, you are going to attach imaginary strings with different objects for different pieces of information. Where you choose to attach the strings is up to you, but I like to keep them in sight, usually to the tops of people’s shoulders.
- To each string you will attach an imaginary object that relates to the information you want to remember about someone or something. Let’s say that the other person mentions that they like to travel – attach an imaginary aeroplane to a string from their shoulder. Let’s say that the other person tells you they have been playing guitar professionally for years – attach an imaginary guitar to another string from their shoulder.
- As you learn more about the other person and have more things you want to remember about them, you keep adding strings to their shoulders with objects related to the information you want to remember.
- Since you chose the objects to attach to the person’s shoulders, you will very easily be able to remember them. Think how much easier it is to remember ‘plane, guitar, sushi, bmw, laptop, Eiffel Tower‘ than is is to remember:
‘He worked in a BMW dealership for 5 years. He travelled overseas twice a year and his favorite place to go is the Eiffel Tower. He has climed it nearly 20 times with his wife. He usually goes for conferences with business men and they always end up eating sushi, he doesn’t mind it but is not particularly fond of it either. When he was younger he played guitar in a band and performed at concerts multiple times.’
Attach Imaginary Strings
Attach Relevant Objects
A New String For Every Memory
Remember The Imaginary Objects
It’s Like A Computer
To Sum Up
The two useful techniques I have listed for memory improvement and easy-remembering are Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) and the ‘strings’ method.
- NLP uses a process to anchor information or a memory to a certain action/image/smell/sound etc. NLP anchors can last for years if not a lifetime. While it takes a bit longer to learn, it may be very worth your while.
- The ‘strings’ method allows anyone to remember lots of different things very quickly by attaching imaginary strings with associated objects to the person or thing that you are trying to remember things about. After reading this post you should be able to apply the ‘strings’ method already.
By the way, you can apply the strings method to anything you want. If you use it for an exam or interview, just attach the imaginary strings to the end of your pencil or your watch or whatever you will have in your sight at the time.
Try it out and let me know if you notice a difference in remembering something. Is it quicker and easier than before?
P.S. If you are interested in using a scientifically proven method to improving your brainpower and gaining a much more relaxed state of mind, I highly recommend binaural beats.