Has your memory failed you on several occasions and left you feeling irritated or annoyed? Has there ever been an incident when you missed out on a great opportunity just because you couldn’t remember it on time? It happens to the best of us, whether we like it or not, and it can become a recurring problem if it’s not dealt with.
Our brains are usually loaded with tasks and schedules and things to remember, even more so as we grow older and get jobs or even when we have our own families. With all that stress mounting up, it’s not a surprise then that the mind shuts down sometimes and doesn’t function the way we want it to. While bad memory is a very subjective thing, it can cause problems no matter who you are.
In recent times, people have recognized that a bad memory issue can be dealt with by taking supplements known as Nootropics. What are they? These drugs are tested and safe to use, and some of them are specially designed to improve memory power and cognitive ability in healthy people and have shown some very promising results as well.
However, before you decide to take up supplements, you need to figure out if there are simpler, everyday strategies that you can use to make sure that you don’t forget anything.
Let’s take a look at 7 such strategies of how to remember things:
Making a note of things
The next time someone invites you to an event or gives you a call and says “Hey, can you bring this along when you come?”, don’t just try to remember it, make a note of it as well. You could carry a small pocket notebook or type it into your phone; either way, the intention here is to keep a written record of it so that even if you can’t mentally remember it, you can go back to your notes and not forget. Writing things down is actually a very useful habit, even when it comes to checklists and to-do lists, making life so much simpler and easier to organize.
Making use of alarms
Who said alarms are useful only to wake you up? A great trick to remember to do something or call someone at a particular time is to keep an alarm at that time and label it the task that you have to do like “Call X” or “Go to the grocery store.” You can’t miss an alarm because it’s loud and in-your-face, which is sometimes exactly what you need when you tend to get absent-minded. This trick is especially helpful for day-to-day tasks and chores.
Skip the junk food
Did you know that the amount of nutrition you receive from your diet directly affects both your mental and physical performance? While junk food or fast food is delicious, it doesn’t have much to offer in terms of nutrition and vitamins. Fast food does absolutely no good for your body and health, and even reduces your general immunity and strength. You need to make sure that at least for a few days in a week, you’re eating clean and healthy. This helps with boosting your brainpower and improves several mental functions.
Try some mental exercises
If you do some research, there are a number of fun and interesting mental exercises and games that you can try out. It’s a nice way to get through boredom and also work on your memory power simultaneously. Even as kids, I’m sure you remember your school teachers using simple board games to help you remember shapes and colors. These exercises have been tested and do actually train the mind to remember things better and more often, so there’s no harm in giving it a shot!
Stay physically active
If you have the kind of job or routine that requires you to stay in the same place all day and involves minimal movement, there’s a high chance that you’ve become lazy and are also very comfortable with it. If yes, then it’s time to break out of that comfort zone and get moving! Physical activity releases a number of hormones into the body like adrenaline and serotonin which stimulate brain activity as well. Your brain cells are rejuvenated, and you can immediately start thinking clearer and better. So, whether it’s something as simple as taking a long walk or skipping the elevator and taking the stairs, make sure you squeeze in as much physical activity into your routine as you can.
Get enough rest
An erratic sleeping pattern can have a lot of negative effects on your body and your cognitive functions as well. Not having ample rest can cause your brain to malfunction more often and also create a deficit of recovery time for your mind, causing it to overload and ultimately cause problems with memory and reasoning power. Lack of sufficient rest can also make you feel restless, fatigued and affect your mood too. So, make sure you get at least 6-7 hours of undisturbed sleep, preferably at the same time every day, and you’ll notice that you’re becoming less forgetful!
Remember things visually
Some of us are better at associating things with visual imagery like letters, numbers and even colors. If that is a strategy that works for you, then use it by all means! This is very similar to the concept where some people can remember faces of people but not their names. If that sounds like you, then you are definitely someone who can see things and associate them with imagery. You could use brightly colored post-it notes, number prompts to remember dates and so on to make sure that the sight of a particular thing reminds you of whatever task you may have forgotten.
The brain is an organ that might be easily susceptible to stress but, once it is trained properly and taken care of, you can say goodbye to your woes when it comes to cognition or memory problems. After all, being absent-minded can only slow you down, and no one wants that!
Luke writes about mental wellness and benefits of brain supplements at nootrina. He’s a big fan of Yoga and mindfulness and feels that these two are the real key to mental well-being. Being a foodie, Luke loves cooking and brings several cuisines to bear at his dinner table. He’s looking to improve the awareness about mental health issues and share ways to handle them among people of all ages.