What to do to learn and memorize information faster and better
Few of us have ever been embarrassedly silent in response to an unexpected question: “Don’t you recognize me? We recently met and... ”, and then a stranger reminds you of the time and place of your meeting. In your memory, finally, the desired image emerges, and you answer: “Yes, indeed, we met before. Sorry, I did not recognize you immediately”.
How to help yourself to memorize information faster and longer and not get into such awkward situations?
What is "to memorize"?
There are two different psychological mechanisms behind the memory process:
Recognition is based on the establishment of an identity or similarity between objects. However, associative psychology asserts that any recollection is always the launch of an associative series of images. Let us not argue. Just take the idea of associative memorization.
Reproduction requires a person to have an active and arbitrary reconstruction of the image in the mind. There are volitional effort and goal-setting. And for this occasion, they look for the best ways to remember information.
5 techniques using associative thinking
Those who are looking for a non-trivial method of how to remember information easily can be advised to use an associative approach. All associations psychologists unite in 5 groups. These are associations for:
• adjacency in time;
• adjacency in place;
• causal relationship.
1) Technique “Memorizing by similarity”. This technique is useful for short-term acquaintance with a person, if you want to remember him, so that you can easily remember him in case of your next meeting. Ask yourself who does this person look like? You can associate the image of your new acquaintance with one of the film’s characters, artist, or politician, in a word, with some popular figure. Mentally call him, for example, “Well, the famous Don Quixote of La Mancha! He is just as thin and tall, with the same keen gaze and gusting movements. And even his name is Dmitry Konstantinovich. ” At the next meeting, the association with Don Quixote will tell you the initials of your friend.
2) Technique “Memorizing by contrast”. Here we are doing exactly vice versa. Find in your conversation partner some detail that frankly contrasts either with his appearance, or with his (or her) name.
“The surname is White, and he himself is black-haired,” sometimes this opposition will be enough for you to recognize.
3) Technique “Memorizing on the basis of adjacency in time”. This technique is useful for memorizing a long row of numbers. Suppose you want to practice your memory and remember someone's phone number without writing it down. Here are a lot of numbers. It is necessary to divide the series into groups so that in front of you there are numbers that are identical to convenient and familiar dates. For example: 4561678 can be divided as follows: 45 - the end of the war, 61 - the flight of Gagarin, 678 - the numbers in order. You need just to come up with a phrase and remember something like “Victory, Gagarin, from six and beyond.”
4) Technique "Memorizing on the basis of adjacency in place." Choose an object as an associative base that you will surely meet when you need to recall certain information. For example, you always have your car keys somewhere, and then you cannot remember where you put them. Or, you leave the house first, and only then remember that you did not take the keys. How to memorize information effectively in order to remember it at the right time in the right place? In this case, you can find help in an associative binding of the required action (pick up the keys before leaving the house) to the action that you will perform in any case before leaving the house (for example, change shoes for street shoes). Imagine yourself, changing the shoes before you go out, and add to this picture something bright unexpected, even silly and amusing from the first view. Here are some examples of these pictures:
• you put your foot in the shoe, and it suddenly has wheels on its sides, and it just leaves leaving you alone;
• you take a shoe, and car keys are poured from it, many different keys from cars of different brands;
• you are wearing shoes, but your shoes begin to resist and, hobbling, run away from you. Or even take into the air and fly away, waving its transparent wings.
The brighter and more unexpected the image is (and the funnier it is), the more chances you have to remember about the keys before you leave the house.
5) Technique "Association on the basis of a causal relationship". Sometimes, in order to assimilate a sufficiently large amount of necessary material, it is enough to understand cause-effect relationships and assimilate one thing: either causes or effects.
This is exactly the case when understanding narrows the amount of information you want to remember. In other words, logic comes to help the memory. For example, if you have to read a number of articles in preparation for the exams, first, just remember the typical structure of the article:
• goal and tasks;
• basic bearing positions;
• research method;
• results and conclusions.
Any information is much easier to digest and more reliably stored in memory, if its structure is clear. It is like in a song or poem, when the next line pops up by association with the previous one. Further, reading article after article, do not try to memorize the content completely, but focus on the structure, problem and results. All the rest will be remembered quite easily by analogy.
5 tricks to memorize information quickly
If you are interested in learning how to memorize information quickly, choose one of these techniques or more that seem right for you. All these techniques are designed to help in the organization and use of the so-called short-term memory, i.e. when we need information only for a certain time - for a day or just for a few hours.
1) Technique "Colorful picture". Suppose that tomorrow you have a busy day, and it is important not to forget any of the things planned for today. Falling asleep, you tell yourself that you need to do the following tomorrow:
• walk the dog in the morning;
• on the way to work buy a bouquet of flowers;
• at work to congratulate the employee on her birthday;
• then sign the document with the chief;
• return the book to the colleague;
• in the evening, on the way home, pick up your sweater from the dry cleaning service.
Of course, you can add all these things to your diary. And you can think in advance what to do in order to memorize the order of affairs better, and use the “Colorful Picture” technique.
Before you fall asleep, imagine the following image as bright as possible: your dog, dressed in a dry-cleaning sweater, holding a bouquet of flowers in his mouth, with one paw gives your chef a document for signature, and the other stretches the book to your colleague. Fix this picture in your memory. You need to check with this strange "to-do list for the day" for the next day.
2) Technique "Combining". Suppose you go to the store and you need to buy different products. You can make a list of necessary purchases in advance and consult with it as you move through the sales area.
And you can group purchases by topics:
• 5 vegetables;
• 1 bread;
• 4 dairy products;
• 2 meat.
And remember them in the order in which they appear in front of you in the supermarket.
3) Technique "Abbreviation". The same shopping list can be memorized by adding a whole word from their initial letters. If the list is the same as in the previous example, then you will get the word “vebdapme”, so you can navigate in the store using it.
Abbreviations help memorize lists of words, for example, the list of planets - Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto - can be transformed into “Meve-majusunep”.
4) Technique "Acrostic". This is similar to an abbreviation, only more convenient, because the first letters of the list of words to be memorized become the first letters of the words from which a sentence is made. However, everyone has known this technique since childhood. It was the acrostic “Every hunter ...” that helped us remember the colors of the rainbow and their sequence.
5) Technique "Nodule for memory." In the morning, to remember something important for you, perform some kind of action in the evening that slightly breaks your usual algorithm for morning behavior. For example, if you need to take a multivitamin in the morning, move the toaster aside from your usual place from the evening. In the morning, when you see the toaster moved, you will remember that you pushed it aside to remind yourself of the morning pill.
Now you know 10 useful tricks that you can use when solving a problem of how to memorize information in everyday life best.