Have you ever left a pot on the stove and forgot about it? How about letting the dog outside and forgetting that he’s out there for an entire night? Yeah, it happens to the best of us. Memory lapses are all too common, but luckily there are some ways in which you can strengthen your memory. Check out this article.

By coming up with mnemonic devices, you will be able to remember things for a longer period of time. Mnemonic devices are used for memory in a way similar to how shorthand writing is a useful device for taking dictation. You link some knowledge with a word or item that’s common, then you have a road map to that memory.

Make sure your attention if focused on the material you want to remember. If you have other distractions going on around you – music playing, the TV on, kids talking, etc. – your mind won’t be able to focus on the material. This will result in it being hard to remember what you’ve studied.

Use regular study sessions over a period of time rather than a single cramming session. Studies have shown that if you study material over a course of a few days, you have a better chance of remembering it than if you cram in a single night. So instead of cramming the night before a test, establish a regular study time each night or every other night.

It is important to get a sufficient amount of sleep if you are trying to improve your memory. Medical studies have shown that getting enough sleep every night can improve both short and long term memory. Your brain cannot absorb new information when your body has not gotten a lot of sleep.

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In order to maintain a strong memory, be sure to remain active in a social context. Social activity keeps your mind alert, and improves your outlook on life. If you’re depressed or lonely, your mind isn’t being stimulated and your brain cells aren’t getting a work out. Exciting and interesting conversations with friends and family helps stimulate and exercise your brain, which then helps you improve your memory.

To better commit names to memory, repeat a person’s name after an introduction, and try to come up with something about the person that might help you remember his or her name. If you meet a Bob who mentions that he enjoys fishing, you might associate his name with a bobber like those used on a fishing line, for instance.

Try meditating. Meditation can help you against anxiety, depression, and stress. Studies show that regular meditators have much more activity in the the left pre-frontal cortex. This special area of the brain is associated with feelings of joy and equanimity. This also allows the brain to make more connections with brain cells, increasing memory and mental sharpness.

If you feel that your memory is suffering, try to reduce stress, anger, and especially depression in your life. One of the primary symptoms of depression is actually an inability to concentrate, which makes it extremely difficult to acquire and retain memories. See a professional if you think this could apply to you.

One tip for helping to remember things is to associate words and phrases with images. For example, let’s say you have to do something at three o’clock. It’s difficult to remember just three, but if you associate the memory with the three little pigs, you’re more likely to remember what time it was that you had something to do.

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If you have a list of words that you need to remember, try putting them in alphabetical order. Our society has already categorized many common items into alphabetical lists, so it is a pattern that your brain is familiar with. As a result, when you alphabetize a list of words, your brain recognizes the well-known familiar pattern and has an easier time recalling them at a later date.

Making sure you get enough sleep each night is important. Studies show that people who regularly get enough sleep are able to retain memories more effectively. When you lack concentration, it can be difficult to retain your memories over the long term.

Meditation can improve memory function and brain elasticity, while improving your health and relieving stress. Make yourself comfortable in a quiet place, and turn your focus to breathing in and out. Try to do this 30 minutes every day to keep your brain active.

One way to effectively decrease the risk of developing conditions that can cause you to lose your memory is to cultivate many meaningful relationships. Research has demonstrated that spending quality time with family and friends is healthy for the portion of the brain that contains your memories. This doesn’t necessarily mean many hours per week. It only requires a few hours per week.

You need to actively prepare your mind before you start to try to remember something. In the same way a runner needs to stretch first, you need to visualize yourself learning what you are trying to commit to memory. This can also help you to be more prepared and organized as well.

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A way to improve brain function and memory is to mix things up in your daily routine. Humans get attached to routines and hobbies and doing the same thing repeatedly, but the more something is ingrained in us, the less effort it takes the brain to carry out. Try little new things like going to the store a different way or opening all doors with the wrong hand to keep your brain on its toes.

Try to remain calm. Not being able to remember something can stress you out and cause you to become anxious. Take a few deep breaths and, calmly, try to access your memories. Anxiety and panic make it far more difficult for you to remember specific things. It is more efficient to keep your cool.

As you can see, you can employ these small tips and end up with big results. The funny thing about losing your memory is that nothing’s actually lost. It’s all still in there. You just have to train your brain to access the memories correctly. You can do that by using the tips you have just read here.