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Last Updated on August 8, 2019

11 Best Tactics for Improving Your Memory Within a Month

11 Best Tactics for Improving Your Memory Within a Month

Over time your memory slips little by little, and the moments where you forget people’s names or can’t remember where you left your keys become more and more frequent.

It’s a natural process, and doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s something wrong with your brain. You just need to keep it active with regular exercises and stimulating activities!

With these 11 quick and effective tactics on improving memory, you’ll be able to remember more and learn new things a lot quicker in no time.

1. Stop multitasking

Being able to do a lot of things at the same time may seem like a really cool skill on paper. In reality though, multitasking for your memory is more of an annoying distraction than anything else.

Switching back and forth between two things disrupts your short term memory, making it near impossible to retain useful information. That’s why it’s so important to pay attention.

Be mindful, and try to focus on one thing at a time. When you’re trying to concentrate on multiple things at once, you’re not going to remember them nearly as well as you would if you paid attention to just one of them.

2. Don’t type – write it down

Writing something down instead of typing it can help you remember it later.

Multiple studies have suggested that writing something down by hand uses more parts of your brain than simply typing it.[1] It’s a lot more engaging and stimulating for your brain because it has to process and analyze the information before your write it down.

So if you want to make sure you remember something, don’t reach after a keyboard – pick up a pen!

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3. Use the power of visualization

A great way to remember something is using your brain’s power of visualization.

Let’s say you’re trying to remember a simple to-do list of your tasks for the day. Imagine you’re in your house, and the tasks you need to do are located in the different rooms of your house.

So later, when you want to recall the items on your list, you can simply picture yourself walking through your house.

If you know that you take in information in visual form better, use it to your advantage! Create your own visual cues – draw charts or figures on the margins of your notebook. Even something as simple as using a highlighter can be enough to help information stick in your mind.

4. Study a new language

It’s probably fair to say that not a lot of people will learn a new language for the sole purpose of improving their memory.

Even a very basic knowledge of another language has been shown to have a tremendously positive effect on your memory.[2] It’s easily one of the best ways to keep your memory sharp!

And you don’t even have to become fluent. Just learning the pool of the most commonly used words is enough to flex your memory muscles.

5. Enjoy music

We all listen to music, but not all of us realize that it’s not only enjoyable, but also very beneficial.

It seems like an entirely passive thing, when it’s actually one of the few activities that can engage both sides of your brain at the same time. Listening to music has a very positive impact on your memory, as well as your attention and coordination.

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But you can take it a step further – learn to play an instrument, learn to sing, or dance to your favorite music. All of it is good for your memory and your brain in general.

6. Take regular breaks form your tech

Smartphones, tablets, laptops. They have become such essential parts of our everyday existence that often our entire professional lives revolve around these devices.

And as incredibly useful as they are, they are massive attention hogs. For some reason, it’s difficult to concentrate and think clearly when you know there’s an unanswered email sitting in your inbox, and you have yet to even check your Twitter timeline today!

Resist the urge to constantly reach for your phone and check your notifications if you’re serious about improving your memory.

7. Get quality sleep, always

With the crazy rhythm modern life has, getting a good 8 hours of sleep every night may seem like a rare privilege.

But the truth is, a good night’s sleep is absolutely essential to not only to your mental health and general well-being, but your memory as well. Your brain needs sleep to consolidate memories, and grow new cells.

Even taking a quick nap after learning something new will dramatically improve your ability to retain that information. And consistently getting enough sleep will ensure that you’re always at the peak of your mental abilities.

8. Meditate to avoid stress

Stress often goes hand in hand with work and studies. That’s just sad a fact of life.

Another fact about stress is that it’s not very good for your memory. When you’re stressed, you’re a lot less inclined to take in new information and a lot more likely to forget whatever you’ve learned later.

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Meditating has been proven to be a fantastic way to reduce stress. It has numerous other health benefits like increased focus and attention, mood enhancement, and of course memory improvement.

Even as little as two minutes of meditation per day could go a long way towards improving your memory, so there’s literally no excuse not to try!

9. Pay attention to your everyday diet

Any balanced diet consisting of healthy foods can have a positive effect on your memory, but there are certain groups of foods that have especially great benefits.

Leafy greens, seaweed, berries, nuts, olive and coconut oil, avocado and turmeric are all extremely rich in brain-enhancing components like unsaturated fats, vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids.

Adding them to your grocery shopping list and incorporate them into your daily diet will not only help strengthen your memory, but provide you with numerous other health benefits.

In addition to eating more healthy foods, consider avoiding trans fats and sugar, as those have been proven to have a negative effect on your memory as well as your health in general.

Depression, poor memory formation, low attention span, and learning disorders are among just a few things that their consumption have been linked to.

And of course, remember to stay hydrated. Your brain is 73% water, so even the slightest dehydration can have adverse effects on your concentration and memory.

10. Try light exercises

A healthy diet is highly beneficial for healthy brain function. Combine it with regular exercise and you’ve got yourself a seriously killer combo.

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Regular physical activity, even something light like jogging or power walking, boosts the size of the part of your brain that’s involved in memory and learning.

So get yourself a pair of comfy sneakers and get going!

11. Try brain training games and apps

There are literally thousands of free brain fitness apps and games available. Exactly how beneficial they are for your overall brain function is somewhat debatable, but the best way to know for sure is to give a couple of them a try.

Even if you’re not a big on games, trying a few free memory training apps is super easy and will not take too much of your time. Give them a week or two, and if you see the befits – great! If not, there are plenty of other great ways to keep your mind sharp on this very list!

The bottom line

Good memory is not something everybody has, but it’s something you can absolutely develop and improve throughout your life.

Hopefully, our list above will serve as a good first step towards becoming a true memory champion!

Featured photo credit: Thought Catalog via unsplash.com

Reference

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Arina Katrycheva

Marketing advisor, productivity expert and technology enthusiast

How to Improve Your Brain Memory Naturally: Foods to Eat And Skip 11 Best Tactics for Improving Your Memory Within a Month

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Last Updated on August 14, 2019

25 Brain Exercises for Memory That Actually Help You Remember More

25 Brain Exercises for Memory That Actually Help You Remember More

The brain is often thought of as similar to a computer. When the brain is powerful and working properly, it will enable you to perform all your cognitive and bodily functions smoothly and efficiently, and the reverse is also true.

Unfortunately, our brainpower tends to decline as we grow older. And as you might have seen in media reports, loss of memory and dementia is a growing concern for people today. Brain wellness is now right up there with heart health.

If you are finding yourself forgetting things more than usual, it can be a little alarming. But you need to know you are not helpless when it comes to keeping your brain healthy and powerful. There are simple brain exercises for memory improvement you can do to boost your brainpower so you remember more.

Benefits of improving your brainpower

According to a 2015 study published in the journal Neurology, older adults who engage in regular physical exercise like jogging and cycling are less likely to be affected by age-related brain illnesses that can limit memory and mobility.[1] And those people who perform regular, targeted brain exercises keep their brains sharp and healthy, which reduces cognitive decline and memory impairment.

When you exercise your brain, you will also improve your creative abilities, which will give you a competitive advantage in your job.

Moreover, brain exercises strengthen your ability to think on your feet and give witty responses, meaning you won’t be lost for words at critical moments in conversations.

Goodbye to awkward silences!

Simple exercises to sharpen the brain

While you can enroll in a number of online brain training programs, experts generally recommend sticking to brain training exercises that involve real-world activities.

According to David Eagleman, PhD, neuroscientist and assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, exercises to strengthen brain function should offer novelty and challenge:

“Almost any silly suggestion can work.”

Here’re 25 simple real-world exercises you can do starting today to sharpen your brain and improve memory.

1. Drive a new route home

As simple as this exercise may sound, taking a different route home stimulates the brain. You are forced to involve more senses to find your way around, which keeps your brain alert instead of mindlessly driving home or to work on familiar routes.

Avoiding ruts and boredom is critical to keeping your brain sharp, says Eagleman.

2. Repeat it out loud

In order to remember anything you have just read, heard or done, repeat it out loud.

For example, repeat out loud the name of someone new you’ve just met and you will nail the name down in your mind.

3. Listen while you read

A study conducted at the University of Puerto Rico found that out of 137 Spanish-speaking students quizzed about an English book they were given to read, those students who read the book while simultaneously listening to an English audio version outscored the group that only read on eight different quizzes about the book.[2]

Listen to audio of something while simultaneously reading or watching it. You’ll engage more of your senses and help your mind remember more.

4. Play crossword puzzles

Simple crossword puzzles and other word games like scrabble, where you rearrange letters and make as many words as you can, stimulate the brain and improve memory.

5. Play chess

Don’t forget to play other brain-boosting, strategy games like chess and checkers. Logic-based numbers games like Sudoku can also keep your brain fit.

6. Learn a musical instrument

Start playing a musical instrument. Studies show that learning something new and complex over a longer period of time is beneficial for the aging mind.[3]

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7. Play a new sport

Start playing a new sport that utilizes both mind and body, such as tennis, golf, or even yoga. Athletic exercise like these will not only improve your physical fitness, but also your mental fitness.

8. Learn a foreign language

Enroll in a foreign language course online or at your local education center. It will help to sharpen and rejuvenate your brain.

9. Draw a map from memory

When you return home from visiting a new place, draw a map of the area from memory. Expand this brain exercise by drawing maps of your commute, neighborhood and other areas to enhance memory.

10. Cook a new cuisine

Take a cooking class. Learn how to cook new cuisines. Cooking stimulates different parts of the brain and different senses including smell, sight, and taste.

11. Do chores with eyes closed

Try washing the dishes, sorting laundry or taking a shower with your eyes closed. This will force your brain to use other neural pathways to get the task done.

Obviously, don’t do anything with your eyes closed that would endanger others or yourself.

12. Eat a meal using chopsticks

Chopsticks will force your brain to pay attention and give your brain a good workout, especially if you have never used them before to eat.

13. Switch hands when doing stuff

If you are right-handed, try using your left hand to do things like brushing your teeth and eating.

For example, if you are already good at using chopsticks to eat, use your non-dominant hand instead to challenge your fine-motor skills that are controlled by the nervous system consisting of the brain.

14. Connect with new people

Every time you connect with other people, you expose yourself to new ideas and other ways of thinking and doing things. This stimulates your mind and widens your world view and thinking process.

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So, be open to traveling more and attending shows and events to meet and interact with new people. It’ll keep your mind in tip-top shape.

15. Savor different flavors in meals

Challenge your taste buds by deliberately savoring your meals. Try to identify the individual ingredients in food, including subtle spices and herbs for a tasteful burst of mental stimulation.

16. Do math in your head

Don’t always rush to use a pen and paper, or a calculator to figure out math problems. Try to do them in your head. Make things a little bit more interesting by working out math problems in your head while also walking.

17. Practice meditation

Training your mind to be quiet is not always easy, but it can be done through meditation.

Some of the benefits of practicing meditation include stress reduction, improved learning ability, increased focus and attention, enhanced memory and mood, and also reversal of brain atrophy.

18. Memorize phone numbers

By memorizing people’s names and phone numbers, you strengthen connections between your brain cells, which can make a big difference for your memory.

Divide 10-digit numbers into sections, such as 801 665 9378 to make it easier remember. It is arguably easier to remember 801 665 9378 than 8016659378.

19. Take up a craft hobby

Craft hobbies like knitting, drawing and painting are now getting more attention for their brain-boosting powers.[4]

Take up any craft hobby of your choice to strengthen your fine-motor skills and boost your brainpower.

20. Tell stories

Telling stories stimulates the brain through recalling and recounting important details. It also helps you remember events and associate emotion with memories.

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Storytelling is so good for memory it is used to improve the lives of people with in Alzheimer’s disease.[5]

21. Create new acronyms

Come up with your very own clever acronyms whenever you need to memorize something in a hurry.

Creating original acronyms or mnemonic phrases, where you use the first letters of words within a phrase to form a name, can sharpen your brain and assist in remembering more.

22. Visualize what you want to remember

Let’s say you want to remember to buy an item you need from the supermarket. Picture the items on your shopping list balancing on parts of your body.

For example, imagine balancing an egg on your nose, a bottle of milk on your head or a package of cheese on your shoulder. It’s fan and you won’t forget that image.

23. Vary aspects of your surroundings

Vary things like the music in the background, time of day and whether you sit or stand when doing something to increase recall.

The theory is that the brain associates words (or whatever you are doing) to the context or environment around you. The more contextual cues you provide your brain, the more it has to draw upon when trying to remember specific things.

24. Space out your learning sessions

Cramming is not always the best way to learn or remember things. Instead, review the information you want to learn or remember (statistics, foreign vocabulary, historical dates, scientific definitions, and so on) periodically over time. By spacing out your study sessions throughout the day, you learn more.

Psychologist Hermann Ebbinghaus discovered that he could learn a list of nonsense words if he repeated them 68 times in one day and seven more times before being tested the next day.

25. Sleep on it

Get enough shut eye each night. The brain needs six to eight hours of sleep, or at least two cycles of deep sleep each night to complete the necessary chemical changes needed to integrate new skills and information into long-term memory.

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Remember, your brain thrives on variety to keep those synapses firing. Exercising your brain with activities that are challenging, novel, and complex will help you to remember more and keep your brain fit.

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

Reference

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