Tricks to help you retain and remember what you have learned  Tricks to help you retain and remember what you have learned 

Tricks to help you retain and remember what you have learned 


Retain and Remember What You Learn - Here's How

by Nexlec 

Apr 02, 2018

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Cramming for an upcoming  exam  or doing some self-study during your free time, and you are frustrated that you can’t  remember and retain  more of the information  you are learning?  Here  are some  common memorisation techniques to help you retain what you learn for a longer. 



The association technique is  a great  method  towards improving your brain's ability to store data.  If you wonder  why  it  is so hard to remember a client’s phone number, it’s because you are  not establishing  a link between the client and his digits  (and because smart phones have made us lazy).  Our brains retain images more vividly than text or numbers.  So by  tricking  your mind  into remembering a number as an image makes it easier to recall. 


Instead of committing  every number  to memory, you can just as easily convert  them  into a scene or an image.  This sounds silly but for example, if  you know  the client  loves to fish, picture him  or her  fishing on a boat that has the number painted on the side of the  hull. 


From there on, you can go wild and  get  creative. The  wilder  it is, the more  vivid the memory becomes. 



This is a  simple yet useful  technique,  especially when you  are dealing with large numbers of small facts.  It involves taking small pieces of information and grouping them together into a reduced number of larger groups.  


The most common example of chunking is in remembering phone numbers. For instance if a number consists of 10 digits 0-4-2-8-7-7-8-1-0-5, you can chunk the number into three groups, 042-8778-105. The ten individual components of information has been reduced to 3 making it much easier to recall.  



Using mnemonics can be a fun way to  facilitate memory retention.  If you’ve  watched  the Sherlock TV series, you’ll know the technique call the Mind Palace. This is actually  a form of mnemonics.   Also known as the Method of Loci, the ancient Greeks used it to give speeches lasting for many hours without a written script. They achieved this feat by mentally placing the key  points  of their speech in places  inside  a familiar location such as their house or palace. Every piece of information  is represented  by an item  in a place that  they could visualise. When the time came to recall all the information, they just needed  to mentally picture themselves walking around their palace, interacting  with the items, effortlessly recalling their key points. 



Memorisation also involves repeating  things as many times as you can. Like training a muscle, consistent repetition  will enhance and strengthen your memory. Basically, your  brain's capability of recalling  data will depend upon the number of times that the information is repeated  and  how recent it is.  


A good example of repetition learning is using flashcards. It is an excellent learning tool especially if you are  picking  up a new  language. By utilising flash cards to help you remember, you are keeping the information at the forefront of your mind,  keeping it  available for you when you need it. 


Bedtime Recital 

Just before you go to sleep, take out whatever  learning materials  that you want to memorise and  read through it once again.  Studies show that  our  brain  sorts external information in  proper  order  during sleep.  Furthermore, it is believed that if you attempt to analyse  problems just  before sleeping, the next morning you might come up with a solution  to it.  


Brain exercises 

Consider giving  your brain  an excellent  workout  while having fun.  Brain exercises allow your  brain  to  develop,  giving birth to new neural  pathways. These pathways within your brain are essential for the development of your memory. Exercises can comprise of puzzles as well as other games.  Games that involve analytical thinking like Monopoly and Scrabble are good choices.  You can even  try and perform aerobic  exercises  such as yoga to help improve  blood circulation,  to  keep brain activity high throughout the day. 


Eating the right diet 

Do you know eating certain foods can help improve memory?  For  optimal  brain functionality,   eat foods like  fish,  avocados, cereal, vegetables,  and  fruits. These foods provide  B12 vitamins, folic acid and other minerals to your body.  Water is also critical to your brain activity since dehydration can cause delirium, which leads to poor decision-making skills. When your blood sugar level  drops, your brain stops functioning  correctly.  Eat regularly and try to avoid skipping meals. 


Final Thoughts 

In today's  fast-paced  world,  it can be  challenging  to hold onto an abundance of  critical  information.  Memory retention is a lot easier  when it is structured around memorisation strategies.  Be disciplined, take action, and good will follow! 


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