Everyone’s memory fails from time to time, and it happens even more as we age. Fortunately, there are some simple things you can do to avoid forgetting things.
I’m the first to admit I have a memory like a colander, things are always falling through. It happens to the best of us, and some of us are known for it. There are prescription pills and herbs you can take that are said to help, but there are also some simple habits you can adopt that will help you without the use of medication.
Taking notes is one of the simplest ways to remember things. Some people feel self-conscious about note-taking, but there’s really nothing wrong with it. Keep a small notepad in your pocket or purse along with something to write with, and write things down whenever they occur to you. I have note pads at my desk, in my purse, in the living room and kitchen, and a special notebook that I carry around for writing article ideas down in.
If you spend a lot of time at your desk or near your laptop, you can start a text file or Word document and keep your notes there. Leave the document open at all times so you can easily switch to that window and make notes whenever you think of something you want to remember. You can keep separate documents for general items and ones related to work.
Placing brightly colored sticky notes in prominent areas like the fridge or bathroom mirror can be a great way to help you remember things. Sure, it’s not the most attractive option, but it works. This is also a fantastic trick if you’re learning a new language. You can put post-its on things around your house with the foreign word for that item on them. It’ll help your memory associate the word with the item.
Keep Repeating It
Repeating things often can help fix them in your memory. For example, if you use someone’s name repeatedly after you meet them, you’re more likely to remember their name than if you don’t use it. When you need to remember something, say it out loud or to yourself several times to seal it in your memory. The same thing works if you have someone else repeat something to you multiple times.
Some people find it useful to get appointment or task software to help them remember things. Depending on the software, you might get a tone that reminds you, or a pop-up notification or email. You can also use something like Google Calendar to help you remember events and appointments.
No matter what you do to help yourself remember things, never feel bad about the fact that you need a little help. If you practice these techniques, your memory might improve to a point where you won’t need them anymore. If not, there’s nothing wrong with being a little forgetful, so long as you have some tricks to help you deal with it.