If you are trying to remember a list of facts or words, try using a mnemonic. A mnemonic is a memory tool which helps you to remember complex information in a simpler, more easily remembered form. A mnemonic might take the form of a rhyme or story that you tell yourself to remember facts; or you could take the first letters from a list of words and make one word out of them; or you could use association to link familiar objects with complicated names, figures or phrases that you have to remember - anything that acts as an aide memoire and helps you to store and recall information. The shorter and more straightforward the better, as the aim of a mnemonic is to create a simple short cut to what you want to remember.
A more old fashioned way of developing a well trained memory is by exercising your memory regularly and using memory tests to check what you can remember. You can buy books of memory tests, and they are also available online, sometimes for free. However you can devise your own simple but effective memory tests - here are some practical ideas.
The next time you go round to someone else's house that you are perhaps not completely familiar with, and you leave the room you've been in briefly, try to remember as many objects that were in the room as you can. Test yourself and see how many objects you got right when you go back in.
Before you watch the next installment of your favourite TV programme, test yourself on what you can recall about the plot, characters and events so far. Or think about a film you saw recently, or a book you have read; can you remember the plot?
Commit the phone numbers of five friends and family to memory. Test yourself on them, or simply try to remember them next time you're making phone calls, without looking them up. Once they are firmly in your memory, add to them gradually.
The next time you go grocery shopping and are browsing the shelves, try to fix the prices of the items you buy in your head. When you are unpacking your shopping, test yourself, and check your answers using your receipt.
These are just a few examples of ways you can test your memory in your own home, during the course of your day to day activities. It's simply a case of keeping your memory fit and active, and regularly testing yourself on what you can remember.
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