Why a better memory should be your New Year’s Resolution
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
I thought I’d give it a couple weeks before I spoke about New Year’s Resolutions. Did you make any? Have any of them already fallen to the wayside? Although New Year’s resolutions are obviously personal to an individual, there are plenty of “greatest hits” that show up for lots of us time and time again. That’s because things like losing weight, quitting smoking, and getting more exercise are perennial goals that we all feel could have a big impact on our lives.
But, if you are looking to make a real impact on your social life and career this year – and pick up an easy-to-learn skill along the way – I suggest you make building a better memory one of your top New Year’s resolutions.
It’s a common misconception that you are either born with a great memory or you aren’t. Decades of research and personal experience has shown, however, that this idea just isn’t true. Men and women with poor memory habits can quickly improve, and even people who already have great memory skills can get a lot better. That’s because building a better memory is as much about mental exercise as it is natural ability… anyone can do it, and it doesn’t take as much effort as you might think.
Consider what you get from a better memory:
Better career prospects. The ability to remember names and faces alone can be valuable to managers, professionals, and salespeople. When you add in the fact that most of us have to remember passwords, phone numbers, product details, prices, features, benefits and so much more, building a better memory is one of the most valuable things you can do for your career.
More time in your day. The less time you spend looking up information, searching for misplaced files, or putting off important projects because you can’t recall what you need to know, the more time you have to spend on more important tasks (or just things you actually want to do). Having a great memory is a good way to give yourself more available hours every week.
An improved social life. Learning to associate names and faces is probably the most popular topic in building a better memory, and for good reason: It’s not just invaluable at work, but also in social situations. If you want to have an easier time making and keeping friends, a strong memory can help you.
I meet people from time to time who think that learning about memory must involve lots of headaches, charts, diagrams, people in white coats with pocket protectors and other things designed to bore you to tears. Few things could be further from the truth – getting a better memory isn’t just easy, but its very creative and can be lots of fun! If it weren’t, I wouldn’t have spent so much time learning the simple techniques myself.
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