ISSUE 73 - July 2011 - by Phil Chambers
TIME TO READ: 5 minutes (Average Reader), less than a minute (Speed Reader) - Word Count: 1,111 To learn more about Speed Reading Contact us.
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Welcome to the July 2011 issue of the Learning Technologies Newsletter. Please continue to forward it to friends and colleagues who you think would find it useful.
This issue we have an article on practical ways to boost your everyday Memory Power plus the regular quote of the month, Mind Mapping Tip and what I’m up to..
Mind Mapping Tip of the Month
Try varying your lines to reflect the meaning of the word placed on them.
For example, a ‘wavy’ line for water, a jagged line for breaks, etc.
July's Quote of the Month
"The true art of memory is the art of attention"
~ Dr. Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) English critic, poet and essayist.
More quotes here
What's Phil Up To?
I have recently started a Facebook page for the business. If you are on facebook please click here and like the page. This would be a great help and much appreciated.
I continue to travel the country running Schools Memory Championships competitions. In the last couple of weeks I’ve been to Croydon, Corby, Oldham, Bristol and Milton Keynes.
This week I took delivery of a thousand copies of the reprint of ‘The Student Survival Guide’. This is a slightly updated version of the Second Edition. I just need to sell a few more!
On July 6th and 7th I will be in London running Mind Mapping and Speed Reading public seminars in association with Think Buzan. For more info click here
Have you ever forgotten where you left your car keys, or even the car? We all experience ‘senior moments’ at one time or another. A declining memory is not an inevitable consequence of getting older and can be avoided. Here are my top tips for improved Memory P.O.W.E.R.:
- Present Mindedness
In our busy lives we are often ‘absent minded’. Our minds are literally elsewhere. For example, when you park your car your mind is on the reason for your journey. Whether it is a trip to the theatre or a business meeting, the anticipation of the event in the forefront of your thoughts. You don’t pay attention to where you left the car.
When you get in from work your thoughts are on what you’re going to have for dinner or getting the kids organised, anything except what you are doing at the exact time when you put down your keys and take of your jacket. How often do you fully focus ‘in the moment’ on where you put your keys, wallet, glasses, phone and all the other things that mysteriously go ‘missing’.
- Observation (and listening)
How closely do you observe the things around you? Without looking, does your wristwatch have a second hand? Does the dial have numbers, roman numerals, or no numbers at all? Is there any writing on the dial? Now check. If you got it wrong think about how often you look at your watch without really observing it.
Which direction does the queen’s head face on a first class stamp and a ten pence coin?
Leonardo da Vinci famously said, “People look without seeing, hear without listening, eat without awareness of taste, touch without feeling and talk without thinking.”
When you meet someone for the first time do you really notice what he or she looks like? When they tell you their name, do you really listen or are you thinking about what you will say to them? If you don’t consciously look at their face or listen to their name, how can expect to remember them?!
So much or our so-called failures of memory are really failures of perception.
- Work (at using systems)
The secret of success without work is still a secret! If you are serious about improving your memory you need to invest some time in learning some memory systems. Your memory is amazing but it is just like a muscle, to get stronger you must train it.
For example, Ben Pridmore (UK Number One and former World Champion) can memorise a shuffled deck of 52 playing cards in 24.68 seconds. But to do this amazing feat he had to first devise and memorise 2,652 characters, one for each possible combination of 2 cards (ie 52 x 51) because he memorises cards in pairs.
Most people don’t want to go the extremes of remembering playing cards in record breaking times unless, like 8 times World Memory Champion Dominic O’Brien, they want to card count on the Backjack tables of Las Vegas. You can get very quick gains with some simple techniques but you do need to put in some work. Phone numbers, PINs and online passwords can be recalled with the same techniques used to memorise cards. You may say that all the numbers you need are stored in your phone and you can write down your passwords, but what happens if your phone is stolen or someone else reads your password? An unscrupulous individual can empty your bank account before you can say ‘Mnemomic’!
Don’t be downcast by my prophecies of doom and hard work. Exercising your memory can, and should, be a joy. The key to a good memory is the use of imagination and creativity. It’s all about making up amusing, sexy, or downright surreal stories and pictures in your head. You can be as playful and creative as you like. In fact, the more bizarre the better. If you enjoy daydreaming you are already a potential memory genius.
The final point to keep in mind when memorising anything is the importance of review. If you want a memory to stick you have to go through it several times. This doesn’t have to be the drudgery of rote learning that you maybe had to do when you were at school. Five short reviews of your amazing stories correctly spaced over the course of three months are enough to lock them into long term memory. You will then be able to recall whenever you need to, whenever you need it, from the right name at a networking event to a vital piece of data in an exam.
If you want to learn more about techniques to unleash the POWER of your memory just give me a call or drop me an email. my details are here.
That’s it for this month. Look out for the next newsletter at the beginning of August.