If you’re forgetful by nature, then day-to-day life can become more challenging.
After all, what starts as a quick lapse in memory can then spiral into something else. For example, if you forget to have spare car keys, any loss or damage of your main set can leave you stranded until further notice. Being forgetful doesn’t just impact memories, but it also hinders your ability to prepare for the future. In the end, it’s best to stay sharp in your mind so that you’re ready to tackle anything that comes your way head on.
With all of this in mind, here are 5 ways to combat your forgetful nature.
This is likely a concerning tip to read right off the bat, but you should absolutely give this technique a chance.
A study published on the BBC Future page in 2018 showed that by doing nothing, you can improve your abilities in short and long-term recall substantially. This is done by setting aside 10-15 minutes to meditate on what you have learnt, instead of moving onto some other task in a bid to be constantly productive. Interestingly, this method has proven results with everyone from Alzheimer’s patients to students, casting a wide net over who can be helped here.
It might seem easy at first, but meditation requires focus and discipline. You can sit and close your eyes all you like, but unless you’re truly immersed in a secure sanctuary of inner peace, your attempts could well be worthless. Ironically, the source above indicates an effortless state of being here, but it does take some effort to arrive at a place of true, unperturbed reflection.
Getting plenty of sleep is also in the family tree of doing nothing, so channel your efforts there too. If you’re unable to drift off, employ the meditation practices to instil yourself with a sense of impenetrable calm, and then try again. Let your mind recharge in a healthy fashion, and you will be far more attentive the next day!
Do Lots of Somethings
Once your 10-15 minutes of meditation are up, it’s time to get back to business.
The Guardian proposed that lockdowns have distorted memories, focusing on how people perceive time when every day feels the same. Others online have remarked that it currently feels like March 298th, simply because of these recent prolonged periods spent isolated and indoors. Once again referring to BBC Future, they too commented that the recent bouts of lockdowns have affected the memories of many. They do note that it’s too early to confirm all of this, but the shared consensus so far is that restrictive lifestyles have given way to restrictive memories.
Therefore, your routine could play a central role in how well you remember certain things. Keep your mind busy with positive events and socialise wherever possible. Take up hobbies, gather your friends for a chat over Zoom, and learn new skills. You could even adopt a pet, to give your days a sense of structure if you live alone. The bond you form with the animal could help your mental stimulation too.
Your mental health is an all-encompassing thing that affects more than just your emotions, but your overall cognitive function. Day-to-day eventfulness, even in routine tasks, will keep you sharp and stimulated, and make sure you can recall as many memories as possible without fogginess or distraction. When each day is distinct from the next, they stop swirling together in a blur of blandness and become much easier to recall.
Forgetfulness can add a bit of charming whimsy to your character… but it can also get you into a heap of trouble, also!
That’s why it’s always a good idea to have a backup plan. For example, if you break your car key, then you would naturally be inclined to get it fixed at 3D AutoKeys. However, while they’re doing this to a stellar standard, you can also ask them to supply you with replacement keys, so that you can pre-meditate your forgetfulness or clumsiness and always be prepared. This way, you can get repairs and replacements in one cost-effective solution, and make sure that a misplaced key doesn’t throw your entire day into disarray! Ultimately, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
It’s important to remember that forgetfulness is incredibly common, and not always the sign of some larger health concern. Losing your car keys, or forgetting to have spares on you, are textbook mistakes to make. However, that doesn’t make them permissible. It’s always best to be prepared, so save yourself the time and embarrassment and get ahead of your inevitable blunders. After all, everyone makes them!
Send Yourself Voice Memos
Voice memos are a great way to leave yourself helpful little reminders throughout a day.
When needing to remember something, most people turn to things like pen and paper, or asking a friend to remind them of a matter at a later time or date. However, pens and papers can disappear or be disposed of, and friends aren’t always around to provide the reminders you seek. Instead, technology can play a part here, specifically through the voice memo.
In an article by The Guardian, voice memos were referred to as either a “a call with the ease of a text” or “a time-wasting nuisance”, which isn’t really a fair way to gauge their use. They also cite that voice memos are used by billions and are convenient mostly for the sender, but if you’re both sender and recipient, you’re operating on an entirely new plain of existence here.
Sometimes, speaking an instruction aloud can be just the thing to stick it in your memory. Listening back to your memos, your memory may well be jogged entirely after the first sentence, which eliminates the need to listen to the full thing in certain instances. In the end, there’s no harm at all in talking to yourself. Two versions of you are better than one, so work together with your past and future selves to stay sharp.
Follow the ‘MIND Diet’
The foods you consume play a role in how well you function mentally.
In 2015, the NHS website published an article on the ‘MIND diet’, consisting of berries, green leafy vegetables, beans, nuts, seafood, and a smattering of other foods. Those who followed the MIND diet across five mental tests had a notably slower mental decline, so your diet plays a huge part in improving your mental health as well as your physical health.
The study originated in America, and participants who followed this diet were found to have brains about eight years younger than those in the study who regularly consume these foods. Obviously, this doesn’t mean that a 20-year-old will go on to have the brains of a 12-year-old after eating some lettuce. However, it does mean that people in later life can more readily combat things like dementia under this regimen, a syndrome which typically occurs in older generations.
Furthermore, it’s common knowledge that meals like breakfast are the most important of the day, energising people for a busy morning. Anything that makes you more alert and ready to go is going to benefit your cognitive functions too and make you more present, helping your ability to memorise. Give your diet ample attention, and your intellectual acuity will greatly improve.