How to convince the brain that it is necessary to remember not the final episode of your favorite TV show, but this chapter about the peculiarities of declension of irregular verbs in Enochian? Most students struggle with memorizing a lot of information before exams, so these lifehacks will be very helpful for them. As a student, I preferred to study and edit my paper in complete silence, so nothing could distract me.

The principles of memory operation can be applied in practice as follows:

1. Use several sensor systems to store information at once.


Do not slide your eyes over the lines while sitting on the couch; involve your hearing and muscle memory in the process! The more neurons involved, the more likely it is that the hippocampus will consider the information worthy of being transferred from short-term memory to long-term memory. For example, remembering the word vigorous, energetic, it would be good to repeat it a dozen times … loudly… during squats. And then write it down – with a pen, by hand. Well, okay, you can just draw a squatting man and loudly repeat “vigorous” out loud ten times. As British scientists have proved, a person is more likely to remember what he said out loud once than what he read three times.

2. Change study patterns.

The unusual is a priority for the hippocampus. Change the font from standard to italic or Gothic, change the color of the paper in the printer from white to orange, read the textbook not on the couch, but standing on the balcony. Or on the roof, but not too close to the edge, so as not to be seriously distracted from the first German movement of consonants.

3. Associate it!

Connect new information to the existing one. The best method of connection is associations. An ideal example is the famous “memory palace”. Mentally, we walk along the well-known corridor of the dean’s office, and items from the Saturday shopping list, or all pairs of cranial nerves, or by-laws of accreditation of necromancers of the second, first, and highest categories, look out of the doors.

If you take it seriously: associate the numbers from one to ten with anything (zero – ring, one – tower, etc.), and remember it firmly, then you will never have problems with PIN codes and birthdays. 

4. Reward yourself.

If for every ten new foreign words you give yourself a chocolate candy, the process will go faster. 

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5. Don’t slouch! 

Neurons and neural circuits need oxygen, oxygen, and other niceties are carried by blood, and proper posture does not constrict blood vessels and does not interfere with the delivery of niceties.

On the other hand, scientists from the University of San Francisco have proved that people who lowered their chin down and slouched more easily and quickly recalled their negative experiences than those who maintained the correct posture. If you want to relive in colors again how you got a failure on the drawing – slouch.

6. A good sleep is a good memory.

To fall asleep with a book under your pillow so that knowledge can migrate from the pages to the brain overnight – it will work! But the point is not in the book but the pillow. Sleep is just another kind of work for our brain. In a dream, neurons form new processes, connecting more strongly with each other, and the stronger the neural circuit, the easier it is for it to retain newly acquired information. Get some sleep, gentlemen!

Every day we pass through huge streams of information. The brain remembers only a fraction of it.

There is also data that is stored for a short time, then sink into oblivion.

The latter category often includes very useful information. For students, these are educational lectures, from which memory is released immediately after passing the exam. There is a feeling that knowledge is taken out of the head during the exam and remains in the audience.

Can this be changed? Of course, yes, moreover, we can not only keep the data in memory for a long time but also speed up the process of memorization itself. There are mnemonics and special techniques for this.

Mnemonics capabilities

A mortal who starts cramming a hundred numbers in a row, arranged in a column, will spend several days on such work, and this is provided that he has an excellent memory.

Another person will learn a column of numbers in 6 seconds. Maybe he’s a child prodigy? This is not excluded, people with outstanding memory abilities are born. But in reality, the master of memorizing numbers almost certainly used one of the mnemonics. 

Mnemonics itself means visualization to facilitate understanding and connection of images with memorized material, then mnemonics are various techniques that facilitate the memorization process. These techniques can be tied to a specific category of material. For example, some methods help to cope with formulas, other techniques will help you learn foreign words.

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The most common techniques

Rhyming

Probably, we all used popular mnemonics. Since school days, you can remember rhymes that help you memorize a sequence of cases or a list of exception verbs. Such poems can be composed independently for memorizing any information. The technique is very old but quite effective. It’s called rhyming.

Why do mnemonics work?

Mnemonics work perfectly, and this has been proven not only by the example of humanitarian knowledge and linguistics. The numbers are also perfectly embedded in the head with the help of special methods. What is the secret of the techniques?

It’s all about the peculiarities of perception. To understand why mnemonics are effective, you can learn how memory works. It is difficult for a person to work with abstract information. Each of us has an auditory, kinesthetic, and visual perception channel through which we are used to receiving information. These channels work perfectly and provide us with the knowledge we need to survive. But when we read a textbook, we are not working with pictures, sounds, or sensations. In fact, we are  forced to perceive letters, numbers, and incomprehensible terms.

Mnemonics tie the abstract to the concrete — tangible, visible, audible. To what our brain is used to working with. What was forcibly memorized will disappear from memory without a trace, like the contents of old notebooks. But what is learned with the help of mnemonics is kept literally in the subconscious.

Little secrets of mnemonics

There are certain rules in mnemonics that make it easier to remember specific information. For instance, to memorize Morse code, you can use ordinary words with suitable short and long-sounding syllables. This system works, and you can choose the words yourself.

Mnemophrases are another interesting phenomenon. They are used mainly to memorize a certain sequence. This is how cases, planets of the Solar System, and various geographical objects are arranged in a chain.

Where to start?

You can find a lot of useful exercises for memory development on the Web. There are numerous textbooks, courses, and paid seminars on mnemonics. However, it is enough for a beginner to master simple techniques that he will be able to use shortly. There is no mysticism in mnemonics, and even the most outstanding abilities can be easily explained by using special techniques.

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