Memorising is hard, but we often need to do it, whether it’s for a presentation, a course, or an upcoming exam. We receive an overwhelming amount of information each day – but the brain filters most of it out.
Here are a few tips to help you memorise important facts and information:
1 – Break it into parts
We are better at remembering things that make sense, and at remembering small chunks of information. Don’t try to memorise too much at once. Rather break the information into parts.
To remember the information even better, colour code the different sections. This is especially ideal for visual learners.
2 – Create a vivid mental image
See as much detail as you can in your mind. This can either be a picture of the thing you are memorising, or something funny that helps you remember. You’ll be surprised by how much more this will enable you to remember.
Try this: If you’re meeting new people at a party, but you can’t seem to remember all of their names, visualise their names in big block letters on their foreheads. Keep that mental picture while you interact with them. Chances are, you’ll remember their names.
Also read: 10 Ways to Exercise Your Mind
3 – Make up a story about what you’re trying to remember
Our brains store images in a visual memory. Without visual memory, we wouldn’t be able to store and retrieve anything we see; from remembering the face of someone we’ve just met, to remembering what time it was when we last checked. Make up a story using crazy visual images. The crazier the story, the more likely you are to remember it!
You can also create little songs and rhymes out of the information, and simply sing it back when you need to recall the information.
Training your mind to memorise information can be difficult, but once you learn the different methods of memorising, it can benefit you in a variety of aspects in your life. You’ll be more likely to remember the names of people you meet, and it can help you to study more effectively. Practise these techniques, apply them in your daily life, and improve your memory.
Next time you need to study for an exam, try some of these tricks, and let us know if they work for you!
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Note: This article was originally published on 8 October 2014, and has been updated for comprehensiveness and accuracy.