Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast Learn, Memorize And Recall Anything Using Memory Techniques, Mnemonics And A Memory Palace Fast Wed, 29 Jan 2020 17:08:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast 32 32 The Magnetic Memory Method Podcast is your portal to creating Memory Palaces and using mnemonics for memorizing foreign language vocabulary (and a lot of other precious information too). Hosted by Anthony Metivier, the founder of the Magnetic Memory Method, a systematic, 21st Century approach to memorizing foreign language vocabulary in a way that is easy, elegant, effective and fun. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast (Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast) Memorize Foreign Language Vocabulary Using Simple, Universal, Mnemonic Principles Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast Crystal And Fluid Intelligence: 5 Ways to Keep Them Sharp Wed, 15 Jan 2020 21:50:11 +0000 4 <p>What is fluid and crystallized intelligence, how are they interrelated and how can you hone them? In this post, learn all about these and more.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Crystal And Fluid Intelligence: 5 Ways to Keep Them Sharp</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> crystal vs fluid intelligenceJane: “Did you hear Jonas’ speech? He spoke so well! Expressive and kept the audience enthralled. Very intelligent!” 

Amanda: “Yeah, he was great! Creative, definitely! But intelligent?”

Jane: “It’s the same. You don’t need to be a mathematician or scientist to be intelligent.”

And so the argument continues.

But what is intelligence, really? Do you have fluid intelligence or crystal intelligence?

In this post, I’ll delve into the two types of intelligence (Fluid Intelligence and Crystallized Intelligence), examine how they work together, and talk about which one is more important. You’ll also learn 5 magnetic ways to build razor-sharp intelligence.

Here’s what we’ll cover:


What is Intelligence?

It’s a tough question.

Many of the world’s most ‘intelligent’ scientists, researchers, and psychologists have been debating ad infinitum over a standard definition of intelligence.

what is intelligence

For our understanding, intelligence is your ability to learn new information and use that knowledge to identify and solve problems. 

You are deemed intelligent (read: smart) if you can use logic, reasoning, quick thinking, and planning to conduct daily activities effectively. 

The good news?

You are not born with finite intelligence. You can boost your intelligence and thereby your social capital by using a proper memory method. (More about this later).

Are There Different Types of Intelligence?

Yes. Intelligence is subdivided into two distinct types — fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence. They also go by the nicknames of gf and gc, where “g” stands for general intelligence.

The theory of fluid and crystal intelligence was first proposed by psychologist Raymond Cattell in 1963. He referred to the ability to reason as fluid intelligence, and the capacity to acquire knowledge as crystallized intelligence.

The concept was further developed by his student, John L. Horn, in the 1970s and 1980s. Their findings came to be known as the Cattell-Horn Theory of Intelligence

The natural intelligence displayed by humans is very different from artificial intelligence (AI), which is intelligence demonstrated by machines. Our intelligence also differs in its cognitive capabilities from that demonstrated by open-source intelligence, which uses information collected from publicly available data sources. That’s not to mention our intelligence for developing concentration and memory through meditation

A Fun Definition of Fluid Intelligence

Once, at a Paris hotel, my shower wasn’t working. I had checked in late at night, so there was no possibility of calling the plumber.

But I did manage to take a quick bath.

I used the Indian bucket bath method: where instead of a bucket and jug, I filled the drinking glass with water from the tap to pour over my body.

fluid intelligence

Genius, or what? 

It was my fluid intelligence hard at work to come up with a novel solution to a unique problem.

Fluid intelligence is your ability to analyze, reason, and think out-of-the-box to find original solutions to new problems.

Your fluid intelligence uses logic in new situations or tasks, recognizes patterns, and incorporates abstract reasoning towards problem-solving. 

Often, fluid intelligence is used when you solve math problems or jigsaw puzzles. You also use fluid intelligence when you start plucking on a guitar without prior training.

Your fluid intelligence does not depend on previously acquired knowledge. A person who is ‘street smart’ uses his fluid intelligence very effectively.

Fluid intelligence depends on your working memory, which is stored in the prefrontal cortex of your brain. It is governed by the anterior cingulate cortex and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex — regions of the brain responsible for attention and short-term memory.

More Examples of Fluid Intelligence

You use your fluid intelligence when you:

  • Identify patterns in logical reasoning questions,
  • Assemble a complex jigsaw puzzle using a picture,
  • Develop strategies or a game plan to solve problems,
  • Think outside the box when solving problems, or
  • Eliminate unwanted information when you conduct research.

There is bad news, though.

Fluid intelligence starts to decline with age, sometimes even as early as your 20s or young adulthood. Therefore, cognitive functions in elderly people may be reduced.

However, there are ways to keep it sharper and stronger even as you age. (We’ll come to that soon!) 

Next, let’s look at crystal intelligence.

A Quick Definition of Crystal Intelligence

Crystal intelligence or crystallized intelligence is your ability to use knowledge and information previously learned over the years.

This type of intelligence is what you acquire through education and experience. Crystal intelligence gets cemented in the hippocampus, neocortex, and amygdala — parts of the brain that store and use long-term memories. 

You use crystal intelligence when you do long division, or learn a new language. These tasks also require focused attention.

Ultimately, these terms are measurable. You can literally test and measure it through your grasp of vocabulary, grammar, reading comprehension, and your competence in quizzes and game shows.

crystal intelligence

Both internal and external factors impact the development of crystallized intelligence. 

Internal factors include your innate curiosity and motivation to learn new things. External factors are the surroundings that you grew up in — your family, educational institutions, and society in general.

Examples of Crystallized Intelligence

Crystal intellect is at work when you:

  • Answer questions related to history or geography in a quiz. (For example, when did Columbus first arrive in America?)
  • Learn and speak different languages.
  • Know the exact ingredients used to prepare your favorite dishes.
  • Learn new words in your native language.
  • Memorize new maths formulae or facts
  • Conduct a surgery on a patient.
  • Remember the demographic statistics of a country you’re reading about.

The good news is: since crystal intelligence relies on the accumulation of knowledge, it is usually maintained with age. It peaks and declines much later in life as compared to fluid intelligence.

Interestingly, research shows that elderly people are valuable as workers as they make up for a decline in fluid intelligence with crystallized intelligence.

Cautionary note: While stronger intelligence may give you a head start in life, it may not prevent you from being affected by Alzheimer’s disease.

You may wonder: do these two types of intelligence cooperate?

Can Fluid and Crystallized Intelligence Work Together?

Turns out, fluid and crystallized intelligence are great team players. 

Even though they are two distinct types of intelligence that cover different cognitive abilities of the brain, they work together more often than you might imagine. 

crystal and fluid intelligence

For example, when you DIY a table, you use the woodworking skills your dad taught you years ago. This is your crystal intelligence. You figure out which raw materials to use, which tools to use, and how to follow a detailed design.

You also use fluid intelligence to reason and find solutions to any hurdles you face — for example, maybe a certain tool is not available and you need to find a substitute.

This solution is then transferred to long-term memory and becomes part of your crystal intelligence. If you face the same problem in the distant future, the solution would be retrieved from your long term crystal memory.

Use of Fluid and Crystal Intelligence When Cooking

Here’s another example of the interwovenness of fluid and crystallized intelligence:

When you cook a meal, which actually provides a decent brain workout), you utilize your crystallized intelligence to understand and follow the recipe. However, if you modify the spices or find substitutes for some ingredients according to your tastes and dietary requirements, you are utilizing your fluid intelligence. 

These forms of intelligence seem quite different, but is one more important than the other?

Is Fluid Intelligence More Important Than Crystallized?

Not at all.

Both types of intelligence are equally important to function well in everyday life.

fluid and crystal intelligence

As I discussed earlier, fluid intelligence is directly related to being creative and innovative (i.e., your street smarts). Crystal intelligence, on the other hand, relies on being book smart.

However, today’s education system and our dependence on technology may deprive our brain of developing its natural aptitude for creative problem-solving. 

Educational institutes even resort to the Wechsler Intelligence Test or other IQ tests to determine the cognitive skills in students based only on crystal intelligence. Many cognitive training tasks also give more importance to developing crystallized intelligence.

However, I believe the goal should be to strengthen your overall intelligence — be it crystal or fluid.

Crystal intelligence is closely linked to long-term memories. Fluid intelligence is, however, associated with short-term memory or working memory.

Research says that if working memory is deficient, the ability to acquire knowledge and related skills will be limited. A study by Susan Gathercole and Tracy Alloway showed that “working memory functions as a bottleneck for learning in individual learning episodes required to improve knowledge.”

But what does that mean?

In simple terms: you need to develop your fluid intelligence to enable your crystal intelligence to work well!

Let’s look at how you can do just that.

5 Magnetic Ways to Sharpen Your Fluid and Crystallized Intelligence

Here are five great ways to improve both types of intelligence.

1. Create Memory Palaces

When you build memory palaces using the Magnetic Memory Method, you are using both fluid and crystal intelligence in ways that enable you to improve them.

The Magnetic Memory Method Memory Palace is a powerful way to train the brain regions that govern your fluid and crystal intelligence.

It’s also a better method for remembering and learning information than using other techniques like mind mapping on its own because you’re innovating and drawing upon existing mental content at the same time.

Plus, any time you can combine intelligence and memory strengthening, you get holistic improvement of all levels of memory. You can move short-term memory into long-term memory faster (and permanently) with a minimum amount of practice.

2. Get Creative 

It is believed that to be creative, you don’t have to come up with original ideas all the time. You’re creative just by finding new connections between existing ideas.

intelligence and creativity

This could be as simple as finding a new route to go to work, starting new eating habits, or adding new ingredients to a pasta recipe you’ve stuck to for years. 

Or, if you’re an artist, simply abandon your tools for a while and wander outside or travel to a new place. Inspiration for your next masterpiece may strike you from unexpected places. 

And sometimes constraints fuel creativity, so set yourself time and space limits to complete a project.

3. Challenge Your Brain

Technology has made everyday life so easy for all of us — so switching off is a great way to challenge your brain. 

Remember the saying “use it or lose it” and unplug from your devices every once in a while. For instance, navigate to a new landmark in your city without a GPS.

Seeking new experiences, learning new skills, and staying busy with hobbies and people are great ways to keep your fluid and crystal intelligence sharp. 

You might also learn a new language, watch a new genre of movies, read on a topic that is alien to you, or just try using your non-dominant hand for a few everyday activities.

4. Meditate Regularly

Mindfulness meditation is a way to engage new neural pathways in your brain. Research has proven that this neurostimulation can transform your body and brain positively.

This form of active brain training can improve your focused attention, long term retention and recall, and your working memory capacity, which are all important aspects of your fluid and crystallized intelligence.

5. Get a Good Night’s Sleep

Want to get a sharper memory? Get more sleep.

sleep and intelligence

As counterintuitive as this may sound, sleep can sharpen your intellect. In fact, sleep is one of nature’s most ignored memory-boosters. 

If you’re well-rested, you stay alert and attentive throughout the day — which positively affects your ability to retain more and learn new things like riding a car or learning a new language.

Boost Your Intelligence, Magnetically

Memory science is important and worth reading, but you are the ultimate scientist in the laboratory of your own memory and intelligence.

Why not get cracking at a new intelligence-boosting experiment with me today? Register for my free course, and I’ll send you my free memory improvement worksheets and videos.

The post Crystal And Fluid Intelligence: 5 Ways to Keep Them Sharp appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

What is fluid and crystallized intelligence, how are they interrelated and how can you hone them? In this post, learn all about these and more. What is fluid and crystallized intelligence, how are they interrelated and how can you hone them? In this post, learn all about these and more. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 30:03
How to Memorize a Speech Fast (Without Sounding Like a Robot) Tue, 14 Jan 2020 15:00:35 +0000 4 <p>Learning how to memorize a speech can be hard. Let me teach you how a Memory Palace and a few simple memory tricks can make it fun, fast and easy.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">How to Memorize a Speech Fast (Without Sounding Like a Robot)</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> how to memorize a speechImagine this: you’re standing up in front of an audience and giving an important speech. 

Now tell me, how do you feel? Are your hands sweaty or your knees shaky? Is your stomach tied up in knots and feeling a bit queasy?

If you’re anything like me during my undergraduate years, maybe you even have a phobia of public speaking. Yes, it’s true. I once had a terrible aversion to giving speeches, because I took a medication for manic-depression that made me shake really, really badly. 

Once, in a course on romantic poetry, I was supposed to give a speech. My hands shook, my papers rattled in my hands, and I couldn’t concentrate on my delivery of the speech… much less expressing my familiarity with the topic at hand! 

Instead, I ended up frustrated and embarrassed. It was one of the most horrible moments of my scholarly career to be shaking so badly and yet have so much to say. 

And to top it all off, the professor wouldn’t take me at my word — I had to go to the Behavioural Sciences Building to get a letter from the psychologist explaining that I could have an alternate assignment instead of being required to give the speech. This bad experience led to a fear and phobia of giving speeches that lasted for quite some time. 

But here’s the good news: even if you have a fear of public speaking – most people do – there’s still hope. With the help of memory and a few other tricks I’ll teach you today, you can overcome your fear. 

And I’ll let you in on a secret. Now, when I give a speech I really have a lot of fun!

So are you ready to kick your fear of public speaking to the curb and have fun with it instead? Let’s dive right in and take a look at how to memorize a speech — and how memorizing can help you overcome your public speaking fears.

Want to skip ahead to a particular section?

Memorizing a Speech Without Losing Your Place
How to Memorize a Speech: Tips and Techniques
Tip Number 1: Be Prepared
Tip Number 2: Relax, Relax, Relax
Tip Number 3: Don’t Make it a Big Deal
Tip Number 4: Know Your Body
Tip Number 5: Do Table Reads
Memory Palace Alternatives
The Best Way to Memorize a Speech: Create a Memory Palace
How to Memorize a Speech: Step by Step
Real-Life Examples of How to Remember a Speech
Recommended Reading for Memorizing a Speech
FAQs about Memorizing a Speech or Presentation
Have Fun Memorizing a Speech


You might be thinking… “but will your approach work for me?”

I can honestly say — yes! I’ve seen this method work not only for me, but also for clients of mine. Here’s one example:

Michael DeLeon wrote the other day and said:

“I’ve been training myself in the techniques of the Magnetic Memory Method. I’ve given two speeches that were, by far, the easiest for me to give because of the Magnetic Memory Method. I felt no pressure. I could relax and deliver the speech I wanted to give because there was never a fear of ‘I would lose my place.'” 

So are you ready to learn some tips for memorizing a speech? Let’s start with a common fear: losing your place.


Memorizing a Speech Without Losing Your Place

When we talk about how to memorize a speech, one of the first things people often ask is what to do when you get lost. In this post, we’ll cover how to find your way quickly back, as well as a host of other issues that can arise during your speech.

We’ll also talk about Steal the Show: From Speeches, to Job Interviews, to Deal-Closing Pitches, How to Guarantee a Standing Ovation for all the Performances in Your Life, a great book by Michael Port that I’ve learned a lot from, as well as some tips I learned from my mentor about giving speeches.

memorizing a speech without losing your place
The short answer is: a Memory Palace can help you be fearless, focused, and able to track back if you ever do lose your place. The longer answer? Keep reading!

To make the most of this post, take notes as you read, then start to carve a path forward to where you go out and give some kind of speech (even if it’s just to your friends and family).

We’ve got an action-packed post waiting for you, so let’s get started.

How to Memorize a Speech: Tips and Techniques

Before we talk through my top tips, let’s get one big question out of the way: what’s the point of learning to give (and memorize) a speech? Whether or not you’re using a memory technique, why do you want to learn how to do it?

Here are a few benefits to being a great public speaker:

  1. It’s a highly marketable skill.

There are lots of companies that need someone to be able to present the value they offer – their expertise, unique selling proposition, value for the market, etc – and why customers should pick them. It’s the same for you — you want to be known as the person a company wants to hire, the one they want to promote, the one they want to give a raise.

  1. Public speaking displays your expertise.

Your ability to speak coherently and clearly is a key indicator to both your employer and clients that you know your stuff. When you can speak from the top of your mind without hemming and hawing or stuttering, it lets your knowledge shine.

  1. Stepping on stage develops courage.

Getting comfortable with public speaking takes practice — and getting out there and starting to give speeches (even if it’s just to a friend or two at first) will begin to build your courage muscle. It’s a win-win.

  1. Speaking shows your personality.

As you practice giving speeches, you’ll begin to develop your own personal presentation style. And the more comfortable you get, the more your personality will shine.

best way to memorize a speech

  1. Giving speeches helps build relationships.

Getting out into the community allows you to connect with people in both your personal and business networks. And if you’re still in school, it can help you build connections with your teachers and your fellow students.

  1. Public speaking sets you up as an expert in your field.

When you’re the one up on stage, it’s clear to the audience that you know what you’re talking about. You can prepare the road ahead by being known as the expert who has the courage to get up on stage and share their knowledge. Just look at Sunil Khatri’s speech success story.

  1. It helps you deliver results to other people.

Right now, your audience doesn’t have a particular set of knowledge. When you get up on stage, you’re able to give them that knowledge — and package it in a way that helps them quickly absorb it. Plus, you can do so in a way that encourages them to take action, because they’ve seen you demonstrate how valuable it is from the stage.

  1. Speaking can help you build your memory as you learn.

Learning to memorize a speech will help you build your memory as you go. Even if you do need notes in the beginning, you can still improve your memory as you practice your speech.

  1. Bonus: it’s fun!

It’s not only a valuable skill, but being able to jump up on stage and speak off the top of your mind is actually a lot of fun!

Now you know the benefits of memorizing a speech, let’s take a look at a few tips to help you along the way.

Tip Number 1: Be Prepared

The number one best technique of all is to be prepared.

This means: do your research and have the knowledge in your head that you’re presenting on. This might be obvious, but a lot of people think they can skip this step.

how to remember a speech

If you’re nervous or worried, that sense of fear often comes from the fact that you don’t know your topic well enough. At the end of the day, be prepared with solid research and actual knowledge about your subject… 

Because the number one memory tool you have — is to not have to use memory techniques.

You’re here to memorize a speech, but the best way to do that is to know what you’re talking about. It will help you avoid your fears about getting lost when you know your subject backwards and forwards.

Part of giving good speeches from memory is preparation — as you prepare, memorize the key information as you go along. There are a number of ways to do this:

Use a Mind Map

Mind mapping helps you prime your memory from the very beginning, by giving it structure in space. 

Imagine you’re creating a mind map — you have your central image, which primes your mind to dig deep into your memory and create a mental image around the core topic, by name. You can also use a key word that’s big, bold, and centered in your attention.

Mind Map Example for Creating and Memorizing A Speech

This example Mind Map was created for one of my live stream presentations. I usually juggle for a few minutes before giving a speech to get my creative juices flowing.

This allows you to think in imagery and images placed in space, and also the connections you can make by having multiple key words arranged in space.

You can also turn a mind map into a Memory Palace.

Consider Content Mapping

If you decide to memorize your speech verbatim, this is another kind of mapping that can help you with your beats. 

But what do we mean by beats? When you memorize verbatim, you may want to remember things like:

  • Where your pauses are,
  • Where on the stage you plan to turn and look at a particular part of the audience,
  • When you want to pull a prop from your pocket, or
  • Any other physical cues.

You might even plan to give a speech with another person and need to remember where their lines begin.

Hat tip to Steal the Show by Michael Port for this idea. 

Read Additional Books

Once you create your original mind map, then you might consider reading two or three additional books on the topic.

tips for memorizing a speech

For example, I recently did a livestream on the topic of how to memorize a speech. As part of my preparation, I read not only Michael Port’s Steal the Show, but also the Rhetorica ad Herennium and other books on rhetoric and speaking by authors like Matthew Clark and Dan Kennedy.

Know Your Audience

One fun way to engage with your audience is to know and mention the names of your host and audience. When I give talks on memorizing names, I make it a point to memorize every name in the room — and then I address audience members by name as I give my speech.

But even more important is to tailor your presentation and speech to that particular audience. This may mean memorizing things about the audience, or things about the individuals who will be present, so you can respond on the fly.

You won’t initially have the kind of information you need to do this, but it’s easy to find. Reach out to the person who invited you to give the speech – or ask your teacher or professor – and ask them what considerations they would like included in your speech. 

It’s very powerful to tailor your speech to the audience and their specific interests or concerns.

Train Under Pressure

When you’re in the middle of a speech, you ideally want to keep moving forward — even if you make mistakes or something unexpected happens.

When you memorize your speech and train yourself to give it under any circumstances, it can help you find your place when the unexpected happens. You can then quickly find where you were and keep moving forward.

Now that you’re prepared, it’s time to let your hard work pay off.

Tip Number 2: Relax, Relax, Relax

The most important step of all is relaxation, and being willing to let go of your expectations.

how to memorize a speech fast

When the light goes green and you’re live you can no longer control the outcome — but you can practice not being in control very early on. You do this through relaxation.

You will relax while you:

  • Prepare your research,
  • Memorize your speech,
  • Practice reciting what you’re going to say from memory,
  • Deliver your speech (by being relaxed ahead of time), and
  • Analyze how the speech went.

The more relaxed you are during each of these stages, the more you’ll be able to effectively analyze how your speaking engagement went. This gives you the chance to think through the results in a clinical fashion and improve, rather than judging yourself on your performance.

But how do you relax at each stage of preparation and memorization? There are a few techniques you can use.

Box Breathing

This is a breathing technique that’s widely attributed to a former Navy SEAL, who used the skill set to stay calm in combat situations.

To use this technique, think of a square and follow along with your breath. 

  • Inhale to a count of five, 
  • Hold the breath in for a count of five, 
  • Exhale to a count of five,
  • Hold the breath out for a count of five, and then
  • Repeat as necessary.

This technique is really good for activating your parasympathetic nervous system and giving you some space between you and your monkey mind. The more you’re able to relax, the more you can be present to what’s happening — instead of overthinking.

You might wonder: why does the monkey mind go on and on? 

Well, it’s worried what people are going to think about you! It’s worried about what happens if you make a mistake. It’s worried about what happens if people think you’re going to make a mistake.

Prepare to Make Mistakes

So here’s the deal… I guarantee you’re going to make some kind of mistake. But — it’s not really a mistake if you don’t pay attention to it. If you’re relaxed and you just move on, the audience is less likely to notice that you made a mistake than if you get flustered and lost.

Everyone stumbles over their tongue every once in a while, and the more you speak the more it will happen to you. The way you overcome mistakes is to be relaxed and just keep going.

Remember: it’s all about practice.


I highly recommend meditation for anyone preparing to give a speech.

It really gives you distance between what’s going on, and quiets the monkey mind so you don’t get caught up in mental commentary as you’re speaking. It allows you to roll with the punches when the punches come.

Meditation is great to help you be aware of different self-criticism that may come up and to keep going anyway. It also helps you let go of the outcome, because you can’t control what’s going to happen. 

Technical situations that are out of your control? Venue issues that impede your flow? No problem — meditation helps you keep going.

Meditation also helps with the next tip on our list.

Tip Number 3: Don’t Make it a Big Deal

Whatever you do, don’t turn memorization into some sort of Holy Grail. 

tips for memorizing a speech

As I learned from my speaking mentor (who coached me through getting better on camera), there’s more to giving a speech than just reciting from memory.

He told me: 

Yeah, you can memorize this stuff, but it looks like you’re reciting from your mind. Nobody wants to watch this. Very few people are going to be impressed by being bored by your precision recall. It’s just not something that is entertaining or engaging.

And when I did my first university lectures, using hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of pages of lecture notes, I quickly understood that it was much more in the service of my students to deliver from memory and key words than to be reading out these long speeches. 

Soon, I abandoned my notes and spoke very freely — which made for much more interesting lectures and served my students better in the end.

It’s a process of practicing, refining, analyzing what you’re doing, getting feedback, and trying again.

And through this process of repetition, you begin to realize that giving a speech is neither the end of the world, nor the most important thing you’ll ever do. It’s simply a means to an end and can be a fun experience.

Another tip to help make your speaking experience pleasant is to “know thyself.”

Tip Number 4: Know Your Body

Your body is like any other machine: it needs to be properly maintained and cared for to achieve peak performance.

When it comes to preparing to give a speech, it’s beneficial to be hydrated and well-rested the day before your speaking engagement.

Some people might choose to fast the day before a speech to give them mental clarity, while others wouldn’t dream of fasting because it makes them weak.

Along those lines, observe how your dietary choices affect your body. If you eat or drink the wrong thing before giving a speech, it can be very draining, since your body is processing stuff that takes energy away from your mind or makes you feel terrible. This takes focus away from the task at hand.

(For more focus tips, I suggest Nir Eyal’s Indistractable.)

Avoid any foods that make you dull, tired, or irritated. Instead, choose foods that help you stay calm and clear. Pick your battles, and know how certain foods make you feel as you choose your pre-speech diet.

Finally, let’s look at a tip the pros use when preparing to memorize a speech.

Tip Number 5: Do Table Reads

There are a few ways you can approach a table read, but the most important elements are to read out loud whatever it is you’re going to deliver — and do it seated with others so you can really study your body in a seated position.

Table read memorize a speech

Practice giving a speech in front of friends before taking it to the stage.

Then, be sure to also practice it standing and mobile, like you will be when you deliver the speech, with an audience present.

You do this because your writing is very different than it sounds read out loud. Because of this, delivering your speech can be very strange if you haven’t written it specifically as a speech. The table read helps you correct what you’ve written so it sounds natural while you’re speaking out loud.

And if you can’t find other people to do a table read with you… do one by yourself!

You can practice on camera — this is a great way to hear your speech externally and objectively. If you work from key words or acronyms instead of a written script, you can also get the recording transcribed.

When I prepare for a speech, I almost always record my preparation and get it transcribed. Then, I can look at 1) how it reads, 2) what it sounds like, and 3) what to add or take away.

Recording yourself doesn’t need to be complicated. You can use your smartphone to record, and use a service like to transcribe.

If you can, share your script or transcription with other people. Ask them what’s too much, and if there’s anything you should take away. You don’t have to take their opinion, but it can be helpful to get an outside viewpoint or two.

And, be sure to ask qualified people who will tell you the truth — and that their truth is coming from a place of expertise and proper context. 

Next, let’s look at a few alternatives to using a Memory Palace.

Memory Palace Alternatives

While I believe that using a Memory Palace is the best way to memorize a speech, there are other techniques and tools you can use instead.

Use Index Cards or Flashcards

As you prepare to deliver your speech, you can have all your points on index cards and memorize them by rote learning. 

tips for memorizing a speech

Index cards are a great way of organizing your points before placing them in a Memory Palace.

Though I’ll be honest and say I’m not a fan of learning by rote memorization. It can work, but it will take a lot longer than necessary. 

In comparison, if you have a Memory Palace built out and you memorize point by point, you’ll use creative elaboration and get to “stickiness” much faster. 

Plus, you won’t go blank, because you’ll have at least some idea of where you encoded that information. If you get lost, you’ll be able to get back to where you were by referring to your magnetic imagery.

Create Number Rhymes

You can also memorize speeches by number rhyme.

What this means is having a system where “one is a bun, two is a shoe, three is a bee, four is a door, five is a hive, six is sticks,” etc. Then, your first point is associated with the first rhyme and so on. You would then go through your speech and make the mental connections.

For example, if your second point was about the Hindenburg, you would have the Hindenburg interacting somehow with a shoe.

This method is quite limited, but it can work depending on your existing expertise. I personally would cross-index this approach or work in conjunction with a Memory Palace. This means your “one is a bun” is in a specific place inside the Memory Palace.

Use a Pegword Method

Now, before I go into any kind of explanation for the pegword method, please note that I don’t recommend it. And I’ll tell you why in a moment.

The pegword method is a simple memory technique for remembering lists of information.

Each pegword system involves three stages:

  1. Setting up and remembering the system, 
  2. Encoding new information within the system, and 
  3. Recalling the information by triggering the system.

In the first stage, you learn a standard set of “peg” words — number rhyme pairs or letters of the alphabet. Then, you can use a rhyming, meaning, alphabet, or look-alike method.

The alphabet list is very similar to the number rhyme: your first point is linked with an apple, because the letter A is an apple in your system.

You can use a free-floating 00 to 99 PAO. So if your first image is the sad tragedy mask, as mine is for 01, then you would have your first point linked to a tragedy mask. If your second image is the sun, your second point would be linked to the sun, and so on.

You could also just use free-floating linking. Just randomly come up with images and have them linked together, without a memory palace.

I don’t recommend any of those things, because, as we saw in our opening comment from Michael, he says he was using the Magnetic Memory Method to deliver the speech he wanted to give, and it was successful because “there was never a fear of ‘I would lose my place.’”

You may be wondering, “So, Anthony. If you don’t recommend these techniques, what do you recommend?” 

Well, let me tell you.

The Best Way to Memorize a Speech

If I’m totally honest, the best way to memorize a speech is – hands down – to use a Memory Palace.

the best way to memorize a speech

Yes, I also recommend using Memory Palaces for most memorization — but I do that because they work!

Let’s take a look at why creating a Memory Palace is best, and how to do it.

Top Technique to Help You Memorize a Speech: Create a Memory Palace

The memory palace is king when it comes to memorizing a speech.

Why? Because it enables you to use space in the world to memorize exactly what you want to deliver… in the order you want to deliver it. As you move through your Memory Palace, you’re just ticking off boxes, spatially speaking.

You know when you’ve finished a specific section of your speech, and you know exactly where you are in space. This is why it’s easier to find your place if you momentarily get lost.

And did you know that Memory Palaces have been around for a *really* long time?

Is There a Roman Orator Hiding in Your Memory Palace?

Historically, Memory Palaces had an important place. The term “in the first place” comes from the great tradition of using memory techniques.

memory palace in the first place

In fact, when Roman orators would begin their speeches, they would say, “In the first place, we need to talk about the great famine and how we’re going to tackle it.” And they would be literally referring to the “first place” in their Memory Palace.

Now perhaps they used images of wheat being eaten by insects to remind them that famine was part of the first station in their Memory Palace, and maybe they had all sorts of other images to help them walk through the rooms and stations.

Whatever the case, the technique they used, “in the first place,” and “in the second place,” is very powerful — and it’s something that’s still being used today!

Let’s look at a specific example of how a real person uses this technique: Jonathan Levi and his TED Talk What if Schools Taught us How to Learn?

The Memory Palace Jonathan used in this speech is one I helped him create. In this TED Talk, he shared not only that he was using a Memory Palace, but you can also see it up on the screen during his talk:

TEDx Talk Memory Palace Mockup

Jonathan Levi’s Memory Palace for his TEDx, a speech he memorized verbatim.

You can see how much he had to cover in his speech, and how the Memory Palace was helpful as he mentally walked through it while giving the talk.

Now you’ve seen a Memory Palace in action during a speech, let’s take a look at what kinds of things you might choose to memorize.

What to Memorize Using Your Mind Palace

While this technique can be used to memorize a speech verbatim, I don’t recommend it. In my opinion, it’s not the best way to give a speech, because reciting from memory often ends up sounding… well, like you’re reciting from memory.

Instead, memorize the following key pieces of your speech.

1. Key Words and Acronyms

Instead of memorizing verbatim and sounding like you’re reciting from memory, try to memorize key words and phrases out of your speech.

When you prepare in this way, you can use your Memory Palace to memorize key words or acronyms that will allow you to unlock your speech as you go. You can also use it for data you don’t want to look at from your slides.

2. Specific Details

Your Memory Palace is a great place to store things like names, dates, and specific terminology. 

It’s much more interesting for your audience to watch you look at them and pull dates out of your head, rather than needing to look at the PowerPoint or your notes. Instead, you can easily remember the names of people you’re referring to, any dates associated with them, and other details you need to keep in your head.


Instead of getting your little laser pointer out and reading a quote, being able to recite it from memory is also very powerful!

Next, let’s look at a couple of tips to make memorizing with a Memory Palace easier. 

Tips for Memorizing a Speech

Here’s something to consider: you don’t want to visit your Memory Palace and just recite what you find there.

Instead, you want to have access to those facts, names, dates, terminology, and quotes — and then you want to be able to recite from memory. Similarly, you want to deliver your speech with the assistance of your Memory Palace, rather than drawing your words straight out of the stations in your mind. 

Memory Palaces are best used to get information into your long-term memory. This means you don’t need them to deliver the speech, but they are there as a safety net in case you need to retrieve them.

One last reminder before we dive into the step-by-step of how to remember a speech: think about why you want to memorize it.

Why You Shouldn’t Memorize a Speech

It may seem paradoxical… here I am writing a post about how to memorize a speech, and I’m telling you NOT to memorize your speech. What gives?

how to remember a speech

Truthfully, I never actually memorize speeches, because the delivery sounds very stilted.

Quoting is one thing (and it’s sometimes nice to be able to quote things), but it’s not that interesting to listen to a fully-memorized speech.

When I give a speech, I structure it very differently, using the process we’re talking about today.

  • I have some key words to talk about.
  • I have acronyms built into place to guide my delivery, and then
  • I practice a couple of times in front of the camera.

Ideally, when you give your speech, you’re just speaking very loosely, openly, and warmly. This way, it sounds like you’re talking from one person to another.

Framing how you use memorized material can be helpful as well, so people know memorized material is headed their way — and you can be fluid in your presentation style.

Now that you have some history under your belt – and considerations around how you’ll use the material you’re getting ready to memorize – let’s take the memorization process one step at a time.

How to Memorize a Speech: Step by Step

Now that you know all of the parts and pieces that go into the process, let’s break things down one step at a time.

1. Get Prepared

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times: preparation is everything.

While you prepare and write out your speech, start memorizing information as you go. I would recommend using a mind map during this stage, so you can start with a solid grasp of your spatial orientation.

This early stage will give you a suggestion of how to organize things later, when you’re putting it all into your Memory Palace. You might even think of the mind map as a first draft of your Memory Palace.

In particular, start to memorize any key words, facts, dates, names, or quotes you want to bring in.

Next, you’ll begin to actually write out what you want to say.

2. Write Your Speech

Remember, even though I write out my speeches, I very rarely deliver anything verbatim.

how to memorize a speech fast

My mentor once told me, “You can memorize verbatim, but you look like you’re accessing from memory. Be more free.” The way I took his advice was to write the speech and then organize it into key words and acronyms.

Using a mind map in this step is really helpful — but even without it, organizing your speech into acronyms is very powerful.

Next, you’ll begin to memorize those pieces.

3. Memorize Your Key Words

You’ll take the key words and acronyms from your speech and start to memorize them at the stations in your Memory Palace.

If you don’t know how to create a Memory Palace, you can pick up your free memory kit.

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Or, at least make sure you’re using the masterclass – if you have it – to deeply understand what to do with your Memory Palaces.

Then, you’ll use repetition.

4. Use the “Big Five”

Once you’ve memorized your key words and acronyms, then it’s time to use the Big Five at least five times. 

What does that mean?

  1. Write out what you’ve memorized, from memory.
  2. Speak it out loud, either to yourself or someone else.
  3. Record yourself speaking and then listen to the recording.
  4. Get your recording transcribed and read it over.
  5. And practice, practice, practice!

Finally, you’ll practice some more.

5. Practice

This may feel like I’m overstating, but the importance of practicing your speech is paramount!

Practice your speech in front of the camera or in front of friends. Use the relaxation tips I shared earlier in the post. And get as comfortable as you possibly can before you jump up on that stage.

Finally, let’s take a look at a couple of real-life examples, so you can see how this methodology works in practice.

Real-Life Examples of How to Remember a Speech

In this section, we’ll talk about how to memorize a speech quickly, the way I do it.

how to remember a speech

There are a couple of speeches I give regularly. Both the NAME and FREE speech are very fluid and packaged, and I do them entirely from memory (from acronyms).

Let’s look at both speeches, starting with… 

The NAME Speech

When I give this speech, I talk about how to memorize names.

I follow the acronym “NAME.”

  • Noticing,
  • Making Associations,
  • Using Memory Palaces, and
  • Managing Expectations.

Within 20 minutes I’m done and everyone in that room can memorize any name they want!

Does that mean my speech is a little bit different every time? Of course, but this method is super simple to follow, very structured, and gives me the chance to just talk about the topic.

Next, let’s look at… 

The FREE Speech

The same thing goes for this particular speech. When I give this speech, I run through the acronym:

  • Frequency,
  • Relevance,
  • Edutainment, and 
  • Engagement.

What I find fun about using acronyms to memorize your speech is that you can also use them backward. Sometimes I’ll write out “FREE” on the board, and then proceed to work up from the bottom. It’s a great way to catch the audience’s attention.

Finally, let’s take a look at a couple of other mini-speeches.

SIP and DOC Mini Speeches

For SIP, we talk about taking things “one sip at a time.”

  • Study the memory techniques thoroughly and consistently,
  • Implement what you learn from your study, and then
  • Practice with the information that improves your life.

This is a very simple mini-speech that’s powerful and easy to follow — and it drops easily into just about any topic you’re talking about.

Likewise with the DOC speech:

  • Doing is the Origin of Confidence,
  • Doing is the Origin of Consistency,
  • Doing is the Origin of Clarity,
  • Doing is the Origin of Creativity, and
  • Doing is the Origin of Control over your mind.

It has a nice rhetorical effect because you have this rhythm with a bit of repetition. And you can drop this into any old speech you want.

Of course, you will create your own acronyms that apply to your topic of expertise, because it’s much more interesting and effective. 

So if you want to give a speech this way, break it down into four key words that make an acronym, and then put them into a Memory Palace. And if you know how to use the Pillar technique or you have Memory Palace networks, you can have multiple acronyms.

Hopefully, by this point, your interest has been piqued. And maybe you even want to learn more about how to give a great speech.

Recommended Reading for Memorizing a Speech

If so, I would highly recommend that anybody who’s interested in giving speeches read Michael Port’s book Steal the Show: From Speeches, to Job Interviews, to Deal-Closing Pitches, How to Guarantee a Standing Ovation for all the Performances in Your Life.

It’s a very good book, and will give you many more ideas than we’ve talked about today. I learned the proper way to table read from this book, and use the technique every time I prepare to give a speech. 

Finally, these are the questions I get a lot about speech memorization.

FAQs about Memorizing a Speech or Presentation

If you’ve ever wondered about the best way to memorize a speech, let’s get your questions answered.

FAQs about memorizing a speech or presentation

Q: How long does it take to memorize a speech?

A: It depends on the length of your speech.

If you have solid compression, you should be able to memorize 100 words a day. And if you’re talking about memorizing a speech verbatim, this typically involves a lot of skill and will take a bit longer. 

Q: How do you memorize a speech without notes?

A: It’s a multi-step process.

  1. Mind Map your speech based on one big idea.
  2. Place the individual ideas on index cards so you can shift them around in order of importance. (Kind of like how screenwriters organize scenes in a movie as they’re working out the plot.)
  3. Create a Memory Palace for memorizing the key points of the speech.
  4. If possible, organize the points into an acronym key word. (Like SIP/DOC, etc).
  5. With or without an acronym key word, memorize the key points – or verbatim sentences or quotes – using the Memory Palace. (Because both a speech and a Memory Palace journey are linear, it makes it easy to hit points and quotes in the right order).
  6. Practice the speech as many times as possible. Here’s how to create a routine that works.

And remember: the script of a movie is invisible and yet, like the rails of a rollercoaster, absolutely essential to the ride. The same goes for speeches. No one needs to see the structure, but they will feel the same force of focus and guidance as you move from point to point because the structure is in place.

Q: How do you remember what to say in a presentation?

A: Let’s be honest; a presentation and a speech are basically the same thing. The biggest difference is that a presentation usually involves slides, and a speech may or may not.

Your slides are there for the audience, not for you. It helps you to structure your presentation and helps the audience stay focused. Slides should not be your memory aid!

So if you’re giving a presentation, follow the same procedure outlined in this post, and pay close attention to how you build your Memory Palace to include slide transitions.

Q: How can you memorize a speech in one night?

A: If you’re memorizing a 20-minute speech, you should be able to memorize the entire thing by the following day.

Use key words for speeches of 100 or 200 words. Know yourself and the best time to work for you — memorize your speech during the time of day when you have the most energy.

Q: Do you recommend Toastmasters?

A: I neither recommend nor not recommend Toastmasters.

It depends on what your goal is. What do you want to get out of Toastmasters? If participating can get you to that goal, then it’s worth a try.

One way to think about this is: how can you find a way to be around people who are already very good at giving speeches? It’s better (and faster) to learn from being around excellent speakers. So if your local Toastmasters has a bunch of excellent speakers, that could be a good fit.

Now you know how to remember a speech, it’s time to get out there and start practicing!

Have Fun Memorizing a Speech

Think back to how giving speeches used to make you feel.

Sweaty. Queasy. Shaking just thinking about stepping up on stage.

Now, think about how confident and powerful you can feel standing up on stage as you deliver your expertise to a rapt audience.

This second scenario isn’t just possible… it’s probable. All you have to do is follow the tips and techniques in this post, and before you know it you’ll be a cool and confident public speaker.

But maybe you’re thinking, “I don’t know how to get started — how can I give my first speech?” I would recommend to everybody, if you haven’t given a speech in your life, make an occasion to go out and give a speech, and give it in different ways. 

Give a number of speeches, even if it’s just to a small audience or a close group of friends. This simple practice will help develop both your crystal and fluid intelligence – both needed for developing the skill of speaking. And try different formats: recite from a piece of paper, do partial recall from memory, speak verbatim from memory, or any way you prefer.

And whatever you do, have fun with it! Giving speeches is a great way to play a giant, satisfying brain game — as well as delivering value to others and setting yourself up as an expert in your field.

If you’re still feeling uncertain, there’s a mini-course in the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass about memorizing speeches that goes deeper into this topic. 

I suggest you start with the free course first and if you’re interested in speeches, and then dive into this part of the Masterclass after completing the core training. Sign up for the free course and make your memory magnetic.

The post How to Memorize a Speech Fast (Without Sounding Like a Robot) appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Learning how to memorize a speech can be hard. Let me teach you how a Memory Palace and a few simple memory tricks can make it fun, fast and easy. Learning how to memorize a speech can be hard. Let me teach you how a Memory Palace and a few simple memory tricks can make it fun, fast and easy. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 47:44
Simon Luisi On Expanding The Major System In Your Memory Castle Thu, 09 Jan 2020 07:50:59 +0000 2 <p>Simon Luisi, founder of the Canadian Memory Championships, shares his expansion of the Major System. You will also learn about his Memory Castle approach. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Simon Luisi On Expanding The Major System In Your Memory Castle</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Portrait of Simon Luisi Canadian Memory Championships FounderVal Valentino, better known as the Masked Magician became a household name with the television series Breaking the Magician’s Code: Magic’s Biggest Secrets Finally Revealed after a longtime stint as a casino show performer in Las Vegas.

In the four-part special, and subsequent series Valentino exposed the techniques behind everything from levitation, to pulling a rabbit out of a hat, to the death-defying buried alive tricks.

He faced a wave of backlash and even lawsuits from small-circuit magicians who were forced to retire their no longer mysterious tricks, but Valentino defended his actions that revealing these secrets would encourage children to learn magic themselves, that the “magic” in the trick was more in showmanship than the trick itself.

Memory competitors are a lot like magicians, aren’t they? It seems like their stunts are something out of an illusionist’s handbook. Memorizing 130 random words in a minute? 1170 binary digits memorized in five minutes? It seems impossible.

But unlike secrecy in the world of magic, memory competitors are eager to share their techniques. These traditions that they utilize for honing their skills are thousands of years old and begging to be shared.

Canadian Memory Competition picture with James Gerwing

In this interview, I sit down to chat with Simon Luisi, founder and chairperson of the Canadian Memory Championships. He is a keynote speaker on memory and inventor of the directional memory method for card memorization. He is also a Gold Award winner for Toastmasters and a chess enthusiast.

Pictured above, you’ll see James Gerwing who won the 2019 competition. Simon is behind him to the right. (James took the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass and you can hear us discussing his win on this episode.)

Simon and I discuss the skills necessary for memory competition, how they can improve your day-to-day as a lifelong learner, and why a personal memory training routine is necessary for any kind of personal development in memory arts.

If you know that a one-size-fits-all practice isn’t for you…if you’ve tried other techniques and failed because they were too rigid…or you just didn’t know where to begin…

If you want to break into the world of memory competitions, but believed those athletes to be “way out of your league”…

Or you just want to understand the hype and what the Major Method’s all about…

This podcast is for you.

All you have to do is press play down below to listen in on:

  • Why Simon prefers the term Memory Castle to Memory Palace, what’s the difference, and which one you should use
  • What’s required (or not) to participate in memory competitions (it’s easier than you may have been led to believe!)
  • Which memory disciplines to devote daily practice to to become a champion of memory…even if you don’t ever compete
  • The reason a distraction-free study zone isn’t ideal for optimal memory training, especially if you study tough subjects
  • How memory competitions can be revamped in order to give a real challenge
  • Simon’s tweak to the Major System that revolutionized his practice (and it can do the same for you and might be interesting, even if you’re using the Dominic System!)
  • Why customization and self-leadership in memory systems is important
  • The reason to be a self-learner if you truly want to improve your memory
  • How photography and film exposure relates to memory training and time (well-spent) in practice

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Simon’s official home on the web

The Canadian Memory Championships

Simon Luisi’s Twitter

Memory Athlete Braden Adams On The Benefits Of Memory Competition

Katie Kermode On Memory Competition and Casual, Everyday Mnemonics

The post Simon Luisi On Expanding The Major System In Your Memory Castle appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Simon Luisi, founder of the Canadian Memory Championships, shares his expansion of the Major System. You will also learn about his Memory Castle approach. Simon Luisi, founder of the Canadian Memory Championships, shares his expansion of the Major System. You will also learn about his Memory Castle approach. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 51:41
How to Memorize a Textbook: A 10-Step Cheatsheet Mon, 30 Dec 2019 15:00:17 +0000 76 <p>Memorizing a textbook is not nearly as difficult as it seems ...</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">How to Memorize a Textbook: A 10-Step Cheatsheet</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Post updated 12/30/19

how to memorize a textbookPicture this:

Exams loom on the horizon and you’re staring at a stack of unread textbooks so large it would make any sane student shake in their boots.

Maybe you got behind in your reading over the course of the semester…

Or maybe your professor assigned additional reading you haven’t gotten around to yet…

Whatever the case, you have a ton of information to memorize before your exams roll around, and you’re feeling the pressure.

Well, guess what?

You are not alone! In fact, almost every student ends up feeling like this as the end of the semester approaches. And hardly a week goes by that I’m not asked about how to memorize a textbook and textbook memorization.

The good news is: memorizing a textbook is not as difficult as it may seem. 

At the end of the day, it’s not just about memorizing — that would be an utter waste of time!

Instead, the real goal is to understand the books you read. And more than just understanding the content, you want to use the textbooks you place in memory to create new knowledge.

In this post, you’ll learn how to:

  • Correctly set your expectations of what the book will contain
  • Understand why you need to read the book (or if you actually need to!)
  • Quickly determine how much of the book you really need to read
  • Make a dedicated Memory Palace system to memorize the parts you really need
  • Learn how to take notes from a textbook onto index cards or flashcards, and 
  • Determine how much time you’ll need to practice the information you’ve memorized

If you want to jump to a particular section, you can do that here:

How to Memorize a Textbook vs a Book
Do You Really Need to Memorize a Book Verbatim?
Set Yourself Up For Success
How to Memorize a Textbook (Realistically)

  1. Examine the book
  2. Make an equation
  3. Get index cards
  4. Find the big points and jot them down
  5. Make use of your Memory Palace
  6. Create crazy imagery to help you recall the info
  7. Stick each crazy image onto a Memory Palace station for recall
  8. Test yourself before the teacher does
  9. Let the info grow into knowledge
  10. Bonus! Save your knowledge for later

Example: How to Memorize Verbatim
Bonus Example: How to Memorize a Formula
How to Study a Textbook for Maximum Retention

Want this post in infographic form?

how to memorize a textbook infographic

You can download this infographic, just like Aldolfo:

Aldolfo Artigas printed AND laminated this “How to Memorize a Textbook” infographic and now his sons are using the technique too!

So are you ready to learn how to memorize a textbook, the right way?

Let’s get started.

The Question That Inspired This Post

So you may be wondering: Hey Anthony, if people have been asking you about this topic for so long, what finally made you decide to write about it?

how to study a textbook

Well, the truth is, I’ve written about textbook (and book) memorization before, just never in the context of memorizing an entire textbook. 

You can check out my post about how to memorize a chapter out of a textbook. And you might also be interested in another post I wrote, about how students with dyslexia can still ace their exams.

In the end, the reason is simple: I decided to write this post and record a podcast to help out one of my audience members.

Here’s what this struggling student wrote:

“Hi Anthony. I want to memorize some physics, chemistry, and math formulas, and also some texts that I have to memorize verbatim, but it needs a lot of Memory Palaces and too much time. Plus, I don’t know how to memorize formulas. 

For instance, memorizing sin(A+B)=AcosB+cos

Do I need just one Loci, and how do I memorize this? Of course, this is a very simple formula, but exams are coming! I need your help.”

Now that we know why this student needs help, let’s quickly talk about the differences between a textbook and other kinds of books.

How to Memorize a Textbook vs a Book

For the purposes of this post, we’ll use the words “book” and “textbook” interchangeably. 

When it comes right down to it, the only real difference is that someone has called a textbook a textbook. Other than that, they’re remarkably similar — pages stuck between two covers with a spine.

Very little else differentiates them, except for some signature that has been applied to them by the author or publisher. Mind you, textbooks often come out in multiple editions, and a quick win is to be aware of how recently the edition you’re reading appeared on the market. You can sometimes find a nearly identical (and much cheaper) version from the year before.

But overall, a book is a book, by any other name.

And whether it’s a book or a textbook (even boring books), the first question you should always ask is: do I actually have to memorize this entire textbook verbatim?

Do You Really Need to Memorize a Book Verbatim?

One of the things I always ask people when they come to me with this question is: why?

textbook reading strategies

Why do you need to memorize the textbook verbatim? Are you certain you need to memorize the whole thing – or even long passages – verbatim? What will memorizing the whole textbook get you?

If it’s just speed that you’re after, think again about how to study fast with this guide to high volume learning at speed.

There are certainly ways to memorize long passages of text word-for-word that are 100% effective. There are people who are known to have done it. 

But, if you don’t absolutely have to put in the time and effort to memorize verbatim, why would you?

Instead, what if you could learn something deeply enough to be able to discuss it, to connect it, and to frame it in a certain context?

Chances are, memorizing in this way will not only be easier, but also more effective. Memorizing verbatim is rarely necessary and the mind will fill in the blanks if you structure your approach correctly.

So in this post, what I really want to teach you is the power of memorizing select material from a textbook.

Your first step, as with any task that’s worth doing, is to lay a strong foundation.

Set Yourself Up For Success

Now, let’s be honest for a minute. If your exams are coming up tomorrow or the next day, this approach probably isn’t going to work for you.

best way to memorize a textbook

In an ideal situation, you would take the time to dig your wells before you’re thirsty. What that means in this context is that you want to know what Memory Palaces are, and have yours set up and comfortable before you start to study for your exams.

You could build a ladder to the moon with all the different memorization techniques out there, but I teach a very particular approach called the Magnetic Memory Method. You may have heard of it, especially if you’re a regular reader.

And because I teach this specific approach, I would recommend that you get yourself set up before crunch time — before exams are staring you down, making your palms sweaty and giving you nightmares!

My approach uses location-based memorization strategies, all based around Memory Palaces. You’ll need more than one Memory Palace, and you’ll need to do some self-exploration. But the good news is… it’s super simple to do, and the process is a lot of fun!

The first step in the process is to have a carefully defined Memory Palace.

Before you ever pick up a book, even if it’s scriptural, you’ll determine how much material you want to memorize from it. And then you’ll create a Memory Palace in advance so you can recall that information with ease when you need it.

But what if you’re new here, and you’ve never created a Memory Palace before? I’ve got you covered — grab my free 4-video memory course below, and the series will get you up to speed.

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

We’ll talk more about how to use your Memory Palaces later in this post. 

Second, you will get in the right mindset for studying.

Setting a good mental attitude is key, before you even pick up the book. This allows you to mentally take away the most essential information. 

And part of getting into the proper mindset has to do with relaxation. Before diving into any memory technique, I always take a moment to chill out and relax. Chillax, if you prefer. I do this by using traditional meditation techniques. 

Now, some people have a very specific vision of meditation and what it means, but for our purposes, it doesn’t have to be complicated.

Meditation, in my mind, is as simple as sitting with your back and neck straight, imagining there’s a hook in the top of your head attached to a string that’s pulling you straight up. Then, you just sit there and breathe.

Some people believe that meditation is about emptying your mind — here are two of my favorite metaphors:

  1. You’re sitting on the bank of a river. Your thoughts are the river, and you just watch them go by. Then, any time you find yourself being sucked away by the river you just bring yourself back to the shore and watch the river again.
  2. Imagine an elephant that’s tied to a chain on the ground. The elephant – your mind – is romping around like crazy. You tie it to the ground with a stake, and then a couple of seconds later, you have to go get it and tie it down again. And with enough training, you can get the elephant to sit down and go to sleep.

That second metaphor – the mind as an elephant – is a bit more appropriate for memory techniques. 

Alan Watts said that meditation should have no goal whatsoever — it should be sitting just to sit. And in this Tim Ferriss podcast, Sam Harris says, “all you’re doing is paying exquisitely close and non-judgmental attention to whatever you’re experiencing.”

So even if you can’t get your metaphorical elephant to stop running off, still take a moment to sit and breathe. Take the time to chillax before you start memorizing.

This allows you to approach memorization with the right attitude: still, gentle, not fighting for or clamoring after anything. You’re just being… and absorbing information. You might even think about it like this: you are a being, and the information is also like a being. You get to absorb that other being into you, something you can bring into yourself!

And if meditation isn’t your thing, you can also do some progressive muscle relaxation exercises or pendulum breathing — this combines physical processes with a particular way of breathing. Or maybe you can listen to some music to get you ready to study.

Now that you’re relaxed and ready to become a metaphorical knowledge sponge, let’s break down the memorization process step by step.

How to Memorize a Textbook (Realistically)

When I was studying for my doctoral exams – and later for my dissertation defense – I needed to read a total of 500 books to be able to sit for the exams and write my dissertation.

500 books. No exaggeration and I’m not kidding. 

(In fact, if you read my post about how to memorize a chapter in a textbook, you’ll see photographic evidence of me carrying a stack of 20 or 30 of those books. I carried many, many piles like that from the library stacks to the private office I had access to in the Robarts Library in Toronto.)

how to memorize a textbook

The good news for you is that you get to learn from my extensive studying experience — how I operate when I’m conducting research or want to memorize the contents of a book. (You can also use this same method to memorize a novel, if you’re reading between the lines…)

Quick note: looking back at the question from our intrepid reader, you’ll notice that they use the word “loci.” I don’t use that word myself, because the Magnetic Memory Method is much more specific. 

There are operational factors in the 10-step method I teach that may not seem to involve memorization. But trust me, each step is essential to the Magnetic Memory Method of textbook memorization.

Remember: before you do anything else, have a carefully defined Memory Palace that involves a location you’re intimately familiar with. I usually chart out at least 10 – but sometimes up to 50 – stations. Sometimes I even use an entire room or spots within a room.

Let’s call that step zero: create your Memory Palace.

A Memory Palace is a mental construct, based on a real location. You use different spots inside the Memory Palace to store information along a very well-constructed journey. Those spots are called “stations” — an entire room is a macro station, and a spot within that room is a micro station (like a bed, desk, or chair). You can leave associative imagery in those locations, so you can then go back along the journey in your mental construct, decode the images, and recall the information you left there.

Now that you have step “zero” behind you, let’s dive in to the 10 steps to help you memorize a textbook.

1. Examine the book

Now we get to the good stuff! Take your textbook, and take a good look at it:

  • Look at the front cover. 
  • Look at the back cover. 
  • Look over the introduction.
  • Read the conclusion, and
  • Be sure to scan through the index, if your book has one. 

And read the colophon page — that’s the place where they include information about the book’s publication, like the place of publication, the publisher, and the publication date. If you didn’t know what a colophon page is, look it up. It’s fascinating. I also find the table of contents of a book to be very interesting.

These parts of the book are what Gerard Genette called the “paratext.” This means the text beside the text. This step takes about five minutes and effectively trains your brain to understand the scope and the dimension of the book with respect to the topic.

Not included in that five-minute estimate is the time it takes to read the conclusion, which could be a much longer process. So why should you take the extra time to read the conclusion?

Partially, so you can judge whether or not the author’s conclusion about their subject was profound enough to warrant reading the book in the first place! Sometimes when you read a conclusion, you’ll realize that the author hasn’t arrived at any conclusion that makes it worth reading the process or the argument that substantiates what the author concluded.

Okay. So maybe that’s a little judgmental. It’s certainly not a foolproof way to decide what to read. But, when you have 500 books on your plate it’s worth taking the time to determine whether or not the book warrants all that reading. You only have so many hours before your exam, after all.

The conclusion (and introduction) will also give you clues as to where the information is in the book — or at least the important information. And this location data is often included in the context of the concluding remarks, which can be quite helpful.

For example, the author might say, “In chapter one I do this, in chapter two I talk about this, and in chapter three I cover that.”

Next, you’ll make some foundational decisions.

2. Make an equation

When I take a look at a textbook, I decide in advance how many pieces of information I want to retain from it.

how to take notes from a textbook

This is what the Magnetic Memory Method calls the “principle of predetermination.” It’s not an arbitrary or random decision. Instead, you will consider the length of the book and the purpose of your studying. Is this for an oral exam or an essay?

Using this method creates an understanding of what your goal is, and what the outcome would be. It creates a border or frame of sorts, to keep you focused. 

Usually, 3 to 5 pieces of information per chapter is enough. And for today’s post, we’ll use 3 pieces of information per chapter as our number.

Before we move along to the next step, let’s examine two reasons why choosing a specific number is important.

  1. Failing to plan is planning to fail.

It might sound a bit cliché, but it’s true — especially when it comes to structured reading. When you’re reading for a particular purpose, then it’s vital to plan how you’re going to read. Books are filled with details, pages full of information, and you can easily become overwhelmed if you don’t plan appropriately.

  1. You can avoid getting overwhelmed

When you predetermine how to approach a book and structure your reading process, you prevent overwhelm. You end up denying it from existing in the first place, because you know you are only going to memorize three pieces of information from each chapter.

Of course, you can always add information later if necessary, but containing and maintaining the information before you even get to it is a good strategy.

Plus, less is always more. Focusing on just a few key points will allow a lot of the surrounding information to stick to your specifically memorized points. Go ahead and try it!

Next, you’ll take out a stack of index cards and start organizing.

3. Get index cards

For regular readers here at Magnetic Memory Method, you might want to sit down for what I’m about to say.

I know that I’m usually scowling and calling for the death of index cards… but in this case, they have a different value, other than rote learning. (As you may or may not know yet, rote learning is a no-no in the Magnetic Memory Method.)

Example Index card with notes from completing a memory course

However! When we’re talking about how to memorize a textbook, we do have a certain mania for index cards. In fact, it’s part of what I call “Magnetic Bibliomancy.”

To join in the fun, grab an index card and let’s get started. 

First, write down the name of the author, the title of the book, and the bibliographic information. 

Please note: there is certain bibliographical (or paratextual) information that doesn’t need to take up space in your Memory Palace. And if you regularly use memory techniques, you’ll find yourself absorbing that information anyway. But I don’t tend to offer Memory Palace space to it, since index cards are something you can hold onto.

Now you’ll have one index card that has all the bibliographic information of the book. Number this card in the top left corner — number 1. (I always label my index cards in the top left corner.)

Next, you’ll begin to fill out your other index cards.

4. Find the big points and jot them down

Now that you’re all organized and have your plan, it’s time to get down to business. 

best way to memorize large amounts of text

Because you read the introduction, paratextual materials, and the conclusion, you should already have an idea which chapters you want to read first. You don’t have to start with the first chapter! There’s a high likelihood that your mind already decided how to prioritize your reading efforts.

Remember, for the purposes of this blog post, we’re looking for three primary pieces of information out of each chapter. So, there are 3 pieces of information you’re going to walk away with from whichever chapter you read first. 

You have your index cards ready to go, and you’re ready to start writing down the key pieces of information on each card, numbering them the same way (in the top left corner).

You will want to have some sort of indication on each card about where you are in the book. This has to do with what I call the “ownership mindset” for textbook memorization. You’ve already adopted the attitude that you’re going to succeed. You literally want to feel like you own the key information in your textbook.

One way you can take on this mindset is to pretend you’re a talk show host on a popular show or podcast, and later this evening you get to interview the author of the textbook. Millions of people will be watching or listening, so you really need to know your stuff. And you need to be able to read the book fast.

When you use this mindset, it allows you to ask questions while you’re reading. You get really curious about the topic, and instead of passively reading you end up engaging with the text. There’s pressure: time pressure, the fact that you’re going to interview the author. You could even imagine that the author is sitting there with you as you read, and pretend like you can read their mind about the answers to your questions.

Studying is a numbers game. I’ve touched on this, but I want you to categorize everything using a kind of numbers game. So when you come across a gem of a detail, write it down on your index card along with the page number where you found the information, and sometimes the chapter name or number. 

This kind of information always goes in the bottom right corner. And if you have secondary ideas, you can use the back of the index card to jot them down. I always do this regardless of whether I’ve copied down a quote from a book or just a note or observation. 

Here’s why I diligently complete this step: if I ever need the information again, I’ll know where to find it. 

At this point, you’re not doing any kind of memorizing whatsoever. Instead, you’re:

  • Familiarizing yourself with the material, 
  • Connecting details with already-known information, 
  • Learning new information, and
  • Gathering new facts and details. 

That’s it — but memorization is not ready yet. You aren’t memorizing the book as you go along, but rather focusing on the book and marinating yourself in it.

Next, you’ll take the information from your index cards and transfer it into your Memory Palace.

5. Make use of your Memory Palace

Once you’ve finished reading the book and filling out your index cards, it’s time to place the information into the correct spot in your Memory Palace.

Let’s pretend for a moment that our example textbook had ten chapters. Since we wrote down three pieces of information per chapter, we now have 30 index cards. And because we prepared our Memory Palace ahead of time, we have 30 stations ready to go.

Now it’s time to memorize, magnetically.

In the next step, you’ll make your information visually appealing.

6. Create crazy imagery to help you recall the info

Take each index card and think of an image that relates to the information on your card. Make the images bright, zany, and exploding with action.

how do you memorize textbooks?

I’ll walk you through a few examples so you can see this step in action.

Example 1: Imagery based on the author’s appearance

Let’s take Gerard Genette, the author of Paratext, as an example. If I wanted to memorize material from the book Paratext, I would use Gerard as a lexical bridge or Magnetic Bridging Figure, helping me move from station to station.

Genette reminds me of Gillette razor blades. Not exactly a one-to-one correlation, but I can nonetheless see him shaving in that first room, if I needed to memorize that he was the author of Paratext. He would be shaving away a beard with wild ends growing out of his face. For the context of “Paratext” I could picture a pear bouncing up and down on a textbook, or a can or Para Paint splashing over a book.

Example 2: Imagery based on concepts from the index card

In this example, index card 2 says, “A text does not exist outside of the text itself.”

It may sound pretty obvious, but we don’t often think about the fact that until someone comes along and reads the book, it essentially doesn’t do anything. There are millions of books standing unread on bookshelves around the world that only exist when someone is reading them or talking about them. 

So our minds are kind of texts, and when we read, the two texts intermingle. The second station will feature the book Paratext itself, and words are trying to escape from the pages. And poor Genette is standing there, trying to beat the words back in — because according to him there is no text outside the text itself.

Example 3: Imagery of the author throughout the Memory Palace

To get some of the other concepts in Genette’s thinking, I might see him giving up the battle and then opening up a lid in his head, which is also filled with words. I could use Genette for each and every station, doing something related to the key phrase on the index card.

I’ve done this with Aristotle’s Nichomachean Ethics. I’ve done it with Plato’s The Republic. I’ve done it with novels. Done it with all kinds of things. Once you get used to it, it’s very easy. 

And when using this approach for Ulysses by James Joyce it’s very easy to see Joyce moving through my Memory Palace, not through Dublin, as he does in the novel.

If I knew Dublin, then I might be able to use Dublin, but I don’t. So I was able to use a Memory Palace based on a familiar location and I see Joyce going from place to place so I can remember the different things that are happening in the plot in order to recall them later.

Now you’ve seen three different examples of how you might use wildly exaggerated information to help you populate your Memory Palace stations. Remember, these images should always be big, bright, colorful, and filled with lots of action.

Next, you’ll assign each crazy image to its own station.

7. Stick each crazy image onto a Memory Palace station for recall

This step is the most straightforward of the ten.

You will begin with card number 1, and memorize the biographical information at station number one in the Memory Palace. Then continue on with index card two and station two, index card three and station three… you get the idea.

If you already know the author and title by heart, you might not need to use that first station for biographical information. Use your judgment, so you don’t waste valuable memory real estate.

Since it only takes a second or two to create a really action-packed image for each station, be sure to take the time to really see them in your mind’s eye.

Next, you’ll test your recall.

8. Test yourself before the teacher does

This is the step many people won’t take: practice recalling the info by going from station to station.

memory palace study techniques

After you’ve gone through and used your Memory Palace to put every bit of information on those 30 cards into the proper station, you can make sure the information sticks. Pretend like you’re testing yourself in a real test situation.

Take the details, facts, concepts, and plot points that you memorized, and write a summary from memory. Your index cards should be somewhere else during this exercise — in a box, on a shelf, or somewhere else you can’t cheat. And you can’t look back and forth the whole time to make sure you get things right as you go along. 

Then, check your summary against the index cards. Did you remember all the points from your cards? Did you remember things in the correct order?

Finally, it’s time to let the information grow into something bigger.

9. Let the info grow into knowledge

One of the most important stages of this process is to turn the information you memorized into knowledge that you can use over and over — not just for this single test or exam.

This is one place where the related information that wasn’t on your index cards will come out to shine, as well. You get to see which pieces of information are “magnetic” and stick to your brain. And you can start to apply the things you learned in other situations, perhaps even bringing some of the information into everyday conversations.

Plus, once you make the switch from information and data points into knowledge, you’re much more likely to pass every exam with flying colors!

And speaking of transforming information into knowledge, you can also pull that knowledge out of your brain banks down the line. Let’s take a look at the 10th and final (bonus) step in your memorization process.

10. Bonus! Save your knowledge for later

When you’re done with your index cards, don’t throw them away!

reuse your memory palace

Once you don’t need the information for your exam anymore, you also don’t need to hold the information in your Memory Palace. You can empty out and reuse your Memory Palace for something else, and let the index cards hold the information for a rainy day.

For example, let’s say you memorized the James Joyce novel Ulysses for a literature class. Once you took your exam, you didn’t need the information rattling around in your brain, so you put the index cards in a box and shelved them away for later.

Five years later, you’re asked to give a talk about the novel. You can simply find the box with your index cards, reconstruct your Memory Palace, and save time in putting together and memorizing your talk. 

There’s a high likelihood some of the information will still be in your brain, tucked away in a corner somewhere. And maybe it’s there in the form of paleness, or there are some ghosts or fossils of other information you’ve stored in the Memory Palace since then. But anything that’s still in your memory will become doubly magnetic after working with it again.

One of my university supervisors required me to submit summaries to prove I was reading the books on my reading list. This is what got me into the habit of writing out summaries, and I learned very quickly that writing summaries out of Memory Palaces was just golden. This is material that – if you use it – will change your ability to study and your understanding of how to take notes from a textbook.

You can also use your summaries again later. Save them, and you might find a way to use them for essays, pieces of a publication, or even a Ph.D. dissertation. By using your recall abilities, you’re becoming an expert on your subject matter. 

You put stuff in your mind, filter it, and then reproduce it — all without the benefit of looking back and forth at your textbooks or index cards. And through the process, you become a master of information.

Now, I know I said you may not need to memorize your textbooks verbatim, but what about the situations where you do actually need to remember things word-for-word? Before we wrap up, let’s take a look at a couple of examples of how to do just that.

Example: How to Memorize Verbatim

We’ll use the first line of Homer’s epic poem The Iliad for this example.

Now imagine this — I used to work (more like play) at Hadey Windey’s school in Burnaby, Vancouver. It was called ELIT or English Language Intensive Training.

She’s got a vibrant, brilliant set of students who come to this after-school program for extra training so they can be superstar students, and I was able to develop a lot of teaching around memory skills for them. I also taught the students other things like interpretative abilities and essay writing skills, all of which are connected to memory. 

And I also was able to build, from this place, an amazing Memory Palace. I never really thought of using it as a Memory Palace until I was training Hadey in using mnemonic techniques and Memory Palaces, and she really didn’t believe it was possible. 

I just happened to have an old translation of The Iliad in my iPhone as we were sitting in a park. And I was explaining Memory Palaces to her, and drawing a map of ELIT, showing her how she could use a Memory Palace based on the school.

memory palace based on location

I said, “Here’s the kitchen, and the office that I have, and here is classroom number 3, and the computer room,” and other things, and I showed how you could make a linear mental journey through this area. Starting in the kitchen, I said, “Imagine I’m limping, and I kick a pail from the kitchen to the door where the Statue of Liberty is standing. In response, she digs with her shovel into the ground and throws the dirt at my office door where I’m standing, writing numbers, and then rubbing the numbers away while I’m coughing.”

Well, the first thing I want to point out is that all of these images are laid out along a journey. It starts in the kitchen and then goes to the door of the kitchen. Then an action goes through the hallway to the door of my office. And other parts carry on through classroom number 3 and the computer lab and so forth. But I’m limping, which reminds me of Achilles, because of Achilles’ heel. I kick a pail. Moving on to the pail, Achilles’ father is Peleus. Now, I don’t need to have the whole Peleus, just pail is enough to remind me of Peleus.

So, “Of Peleus’ son, Achilles,” the pail is now kicked at the Statue of Liberty. “Sing, O Muse.” Now that’s personal to me. The Statue of Liberty means muse to me. It’s just because it’s a woman in a gown, I guess — it works for me. 

The hardest thing to teach about Memory Palaces and associative imagery is that you need to use what works for you. You need to draw from your own personal pool of images based on other things that you know. You’re creating associations. So it might not make sense to you, but, to me, it makes a great deal of sense. 

“Of Peleus’ son, Achilles, sing, O Muse.” Me, limping, kicking a pail at the Statue of Liberty, that brings back “Of Peleus’ son, Achilles, sing, O Muse. The vengeance, deep and deadly” which is the next line — so the Statue of Liberty is really angry about this, but instead of attacking back at me, she digs into the earth with vengeance — “The vengeance, deep and deadly; whence to Greece unnumbered ills arose.” 

So she’s throwing this dirt at my office door, and I didn’t really need to think about the fact that it was taking place in Greece. Any time that you don’t need to memorize something, don’t worry about putting it in the verbatim, because verbatim is a weird thing. Basically, if you don’t need it and it comes back naturally, don’t create an image for it.

So, “Whence to Greece unnumbered ills arose,” well, what am I doing as this dirt comes at me? I’m writing numbers, and then I’m wiping them away. Unnumbered. And I’m coughing, I’m sick — ills. “Whence to Greece unnumbered ills arose.”

That’s a very simple example. I created a vignette since it’s not really a single image or a set of images. And I did this on and on and on for as much of The Iliad as I wanted to memorize to create this example for Hadey. And she was blown away.

After that, she came back two days later and had memorized 100 words of English vocabulary. (English is not her first language.) She was really skeptical at first, but that’s how I finally convinced her to give this a try. Now she’s part of Toastmasters, and she’s giving speeches left, right, and center, right from her mind, directly from using the Magnetic Memory Method.

Now, it’s important to remember that this example was how to memorize a poem verbatim, and you may not need to memorize your entire textbook word-for-word.

And in additional good news, you can use this method for anything you want to remember — it doesn’t matter whether it’s a formula, poetry, a quote, phrase in a foreign language, or a textbook. 

Memorization is memorization, when you get right down to it.

The reality is that you can take a spoon or a bucket — the ocean of information doesn’t care. The memory techniques and your brain treat all information equally well. It’s only the ego that sees a difference, and lack of preparation with the memory tools makes it more difficult. 

And finally, since our intrepid reader asked specifically about how to memorize a formula, I’m adding a bonus example to help anyone who needs to memorize them.

Bonus Example: How to Memorize a Formula

Let’s also break down an example of how verbatim memorization works when you need to remember a formula. We’ll use the example our reader asked about:


how to memorize a formula

As always, we want to start with a well-formed Memory Palace first. 

I think of my friend Shannon because her name starts with ‘S’. I was only in her apartment once to watch a James Bond movie, but that’s all I need to get a good Memory Palace rolling. 

Next, I start creating Magnetic Imagery to encode the first part of the formula. Since the devil is the boss of “sin,” I put him on Shannon’s couch (a micro-station). To memorize the character “(“ I make it a bulldozer. It drives over an Apple computer, which draws upon another technique entirely, called the pegword method.

From this A for Apple computer, an arm emerges and tosses a crucifix at Batman. Why? Because a crucifix is a good memory tool for remember, and Batman helps me remember “b.” 

Now all I have to do is have Batman raise his shield — thus closing this part of the formula with the “)” symbol. But this shield is special because it has two guns to represent the = sign. Then Al Pacino “accosts” Batman throwing a crucifix at Cookie monster wearing Batman “cosplay.”

I know that this process might sound like a lot if you’re a beginner, but you’ll pick it up quickly. And you should — it’s powerful!

So there you have it. Your 10-step cheat sheet for how to memorize a textbook or formula… or any other book you want to remember.

How to Study a Textbook for Maximum Retention

Remember that scenario at the beginning of the post? The one where exams were on the horizon, and you were feeling woefully unprepared?

Now you know how to determine how much reading you actually need to do, how much memorization is on your plate, and the best way to memorize your textbooks so you retain as much information as possible.

Most importantly, you understand that memorizing a textbook isn’t as hard as it might seem!

You’re on the right track to ace your exams and create a whole new set of knowledge that you can use now and into the future.

And if you feel like you could use a little bit more of a memory boost before your exams, check out my free memory improvement kit.


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Memorizing a textbook is not nearly as difficult as it seems ... Memorizing a textbook is not nearly as difficult as it seems ... Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 42:36
What Are Cognitive Maps & Do They Work With Memory Palaces? Wed, 18 Dec 2019 21:07:54 +0000 2 <p>How do cognitive maps help you with directions? In this post, learn all about cognitive maps and how to use them to strengthen memory.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">What Are Cognitive Maps & Do They Work With Memory Palaces?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a woman with a map to illustration a concept related to Cognitive Maps and remembering directionsWhen James called me this morning from the cafe, I was able to give him exact directions to my pad.

I did not have to think about the route. I did not have to look it up on Google Maps.

The path from my favorite cafe to my apartment is laid out clearly in my brain. Every turn, every lane is distinctly mapped in my memory.

How can I do this?

It is my superpower. Voila!

Okay, that’s not correct. It’s not my superpower. We all have this superpower. 

We all use cognitive maps or mental maps every day to navigate unfamiliar territory, give directions, learn or recall information.

In this post, I’ll explain what are cognitive maps, how do they work and how to use them in memory strengthening exercises like memory palaces.

Here’s what I’ll cover:


What are Cognitive Maps? 

Cognitive maps are mental representations or images of the layout of one’s physical environment. That spatial representation can include the exact specifics of a location and the general area of a location. 

As we interact with our surroundings, we interpret and encode them into mental maps or nodes of knowledge. We then use these mental maps or spatial information to travel to our favourite restaurant, nearest hospital or just get to the office.

We can also use mental maps to form powerful memory palaces and memorize anything. I’ll tell you more about this later.

Edward Tolman the psychologist who coined the term cognitive maps

Edward Tolman coined the term “cognitive maps” in 1948.

Coined in the 1940s by American psychologist Edward Tolman, cognitive maps are an internal spatial representation or mental model of the landscape in which we travel.

The term and the concept were introduced by Tolman in an article in the journal Psychological Review in 1948. 

Cognitive maps are also known as mental maps, mind maps, schemata, and frames of reference. They are a small part of a person’s spatial cognition

The branch of cognitive psychology that studies how you gain and utilize knowledge about your environment to identify where you are, how to obtain resources, and how to find your way home is known as spatial cognition.

According to D.R. Montello, in the International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences, 2001: 

“The cognitive (or mental) map includes knowledge of landmarks, route connections, and distance and direction relations; nonspatial attributes and emotional associations are stored as well.

However, in many ways, the cognitive map is not like a cartographic ‘map in the head.’ It is not a unitary integrated representation, but consists of stored discrete pieces including landmarks, route segments, and regions. The separate pieces are partially linked or associated frequently so as to represent hierarchies such as the location of a place inside of a larger region.” 

Importance of Cognitive Maps  

Cognitive mapping has a definite function. It is an essential skill for many living organisms, and it is the reason we do not get lost in places we have been in before.

Tolman believed cognitive mapping to be a type of latent learning where individuals acquire large numbers of signals or cues from the environment and use these to build a mental image of their environment or a cognitive map.

Image of a car blazing across train tracks to express a concept related to memory retention

The fun part?

When you drive or walk the same route every day, you learn the locations of various objects and buildings and build mental models of these routes. The cognitive processes take place automatically. You are usually not cognizant of this latent learning.

Now when you need to find a building or object on that particular route, your cognitive mapping of that route comes into play. Your cognitive processes use existing knowledge of the environment to generate new knowledge or pathways to find the building or object.

You usually do not have a problem locating a familiar place, even if you have access to a wide range of mental models

Cognitive Maps & Mazes

Edward Tolman’s experiments involving rats and mazes was how he was able to visualize the importance of cognitive mapping in the human brain.

Tolman placed a rat in a cross-shaped maze and allowed it to explore the maze. 

After the rat had explored the maze for a bit, it was placed at one arm of the cross, and food was kept at the next arm to the immediate right. 

Since the rat was familiar with the layout, it learned to turn right at the intersection to get to the food. 

Next, the rat was placed at a different arm of the cross maze. Tolman was interested to see if there was a change in behavior.

Did it get lost?

No, the rat was still able to move in the direction of the food no matter where in the maze it was placed. Differences in the position of the rat did not matter. Tolman stated that this was because of the initial cognitive map it had created of the maze. 

Tolman’s experiments with rats ingrained the idea of the cognitive map in cognitive psychology.

How do Cognitive Maps Work? 

What is the process to design cognitive maps in your brain?

Your brain creates a cognitive map using a number of sources. It uses visual stimulus and other cues like olfaction and hearing to deduce your location within an environment as you move through it.

Brain scan of strong memory to illustrate how memory improvement and the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass helps learners

Using these cues, a vector is created that represents your position and direction within an environment. The vector is then passed to the hippocampal place cells where it is interpreted, and the brain gets more information about the environment and your relative locations within the context of the cognitive map.

The entire activity may seem complex, but it happens almost automatically.

The Hippocampus As A Cognitive Map

Interestingly, both birds and mammals form cognitive maps using the brain’s hippocampus. 

In The Hippocampus as a Cognitive Map (1978), neuroscientist John O’Keefe and neuropsychologist Lynn Nadel, say that neurons in the hippocampus form a memory of the animal’s environment. Then when the animal goes to that particular place, these neurons are reminded of that place, as if they were reading from a map. 

The book provided a more allocentric interpretation of the cognitive map.

Other studies by Torkel Hafting and Marianne Fyhn – part of a team headed by Edvard and May-Britt Moser at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology – discovered the existence of grid cells in the brain. They used techniques mastered by O’Keefe to study inputs to the hippocampus. 

The researchers found a new type of spatial cells in the entorhinal cortex. The entorhinal cortex is the part of the brain that sends more information to the hippocampus than almost anywhere else. Surprisingly, the researchers found that these cells fired only when the rat went into specific places in the environment and that they fired in many places. 

Brain Exercises to Improve Memory Magnetic Memory Method Blog Featured Image

More interesting still, these cells formed a hexagonal pattern in which each firing place was the same distance from all its neighbouring ones. 

The study led researchers to the discovery that metric information is inherent in the brain, wired into the grid cells, regardless of its prior experience. 

The discovery proved to be both surprising and dramatic discovery. Scientists drew an important inference. They now understood that the hippocampus is both a map and a memory system.

Does Cognitive Mapping Use Memory?

Cognitive mapping uses spatial memory, but it is more than that. 

Spatial memory records information about one’s environment and spatial orientation.

Now, here’s the most important point to understand:

The fact that you can retain the sequence of streets in the directions to your house is spatial memory.

However, when you see these streets in your “mind’s eye” as you give directions – that is cognitive mapping. 

Are Cognitive Maps Accurate? 

Cognitive maps are not completely accurate.

When you create a cognitive map, your brain will omit information that is irrelevant to the task at hand. 

For example, you and your colleague, who lives in the same apartment block, take the same route to drive home daily. However, while you are in the driving seat, your colleague has a driver. 

So, while you may be able to describe the route from the office to home accurately, your colleague may have a more basic idea of the road and objects en route.


Because he does not have to concentrate on the road during the drive, whereas you must. 

Therefore, both of you sketch maps of the same route differently. The example also shows that travel modes can impact cognitive mapping.

The way people travel has a huge impact on your cognitive mapping – especially if they regularly use neurobics.

Understanding how the brain processes and sketches cognitive maps has important implications for transportation planners and accessibility planning in cities.

Image of a parkour athlete to illustrate a concept related to physical neurobics

What this also means is that a cognitive map can be different from the actual environment that a person is mapping due to the relationships of an individual with the environmental stimuli

Furthermore, the way spatial knowledge is represented in your mind leads to certain patterns of distortions. Spatial knowledge in the human brain is not as well modeled as the Euclidean geometry of high school math. For example, people often think the distance to go from A to B is different than from B to A. 

Moreover, cognitive maps generally get distorted by simplifying assumptions, beliefs and preconceptions. For instance, in your cognitive maps, all roads may join at right angles or straight lines even if they do not do so in the real-world

Are Cognitive Maps Different From a Mind Map?

When it comes to the real of ideas, mind maps do relate. You can think of them as the most simplistic and straightforward type of cognitive maps. 

They are quick to create and have a clear hierarchy and structure. A mind map is akin to a tree with branches, where the bark represents a central topic, and the branches denote the subtopics. 

Mind Map Example for language learning

A quick Mind Map for learning German vocabulary related to cooking (hence the fish).

In mind-mapping, the map represents information and ideas that are connected to each other. Such connections enable you to retain and learn new things quickly and easily. 

Mind map “links” are usually “dynamically passive” – they don’t represent anything more than connectivity used for creativity and enhanced memory. To get really good, I suggest you check out Tony Buzan’s Mind Map Mastery.

In cognitive mapping, a model of the world is created using links as well as concepts. Moreover, cognitive mapping also uses links more actively than mind mapping. But the larger point involves strategy, which is what we’ll cover next. 

How to Build Memory Palaces with Cognitive Maps?

Can cognitive maps enable you to find and build memory palaces?


Here’s how:

As you form new cognitive maps of places you visit or recall your childhood home, college dormitory, a beloved first apartment, or your current residence, try to use them as multiple Memory Palaces.

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Seen a new movie or read a new novel?

Use the layout of the fictional character’s home or environment to create your own mind palace.

Think the tiny home of Frodo Baggins from Lord of the Rings or Monica’s iconic New York apartment on Friends.

In sum:

Just use your natural ability to form mental maps to build strong memory palaces and you can remember anything that you want.

Ready to get started? If not, let me know your questions and let’s get you more clarity so you can!

The post What Are Cognitive Maps & Do They Work With Memory Palaces? appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

How do cognitive maps help you with directions? In this post, learn all about cognitive maps and how to use them to strengthen memory. How do cognitive maps help you with directions? In this post, learn all about cognitive maps and how to use them to strengthen memory. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 29:57
Nir Eyal On Creating An Indistractable Life And Techno Panic-Free Focus Thu, 12 Dec 2019 05:34:22 +0000 2 <p>Tired of devices yanking you around? What if the problem lies elsewhere? Nir Eyal's Indistractable will help you focus and enjoy your tech without issue.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Nir Eyal On Creating An Indistractable Life And Techno Panic-Free Focus</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Portrait of Nir Eyal for Magnetic Memory Method PodcastWriter and philosopher Paul Virilio famously said “The invention of the ship was also the invention of the shipwreck.”

In this day and age, how true, how fitting…

With every success comes unforeseen consequences.

Just look at Facebook.

Once touted as a revolutionary social networking giant, and undoubtedly the forerunner of modern digital communication, it is now more famous for its “scandals” in the 2016 US Presidential election and data breeches (i.e. selling your private data).

Do you think Mark Zuckerberg could ever have imagined this level of influence and power could be his when he dreamed up the platform in his dorm room? Or the consequences and downfall that comes with it?

And that’s just the “big stuff.” What about the role of tech and social media in our everyday lives?

Don’t we enjoy a rush of adrenaline or a bit of a dopamine spike when our device lights up and sounds that familiar ping, or we see our phone buzz on our desk?

We are, without a doubt, under a spell.

And it’s not just Facebook. I’m looking at you Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, Snapchat, and Tiktok (and whatever the hot new app is coming down the pipeline next).

The notifications call.

We answer.

And just like the Titanic, we unwittingly are steering our ship towards an iceberg, all due to distraction.

But what if our lives weren’t ruled by the hefty priced device in our pocket?

Today I sit down with bestselling writer, Nir Eyal, author of Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products and Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life.

Nir is a former Stanford Graduate School professor and accomplished and successful angel investor, consultant, and teacher. We discuss Indistractable and how you can break the cycle of “ding, glance (or in reality 30 minutes later), return to task/conversation/work/sleep, repeat.”

You don’t have to live as a slave to technology. You are not a slave of your own making. You are the captain of your ship.

Curious and want to know more? All you have to do is press play (above) now and you’ll discover:

  • Why “indistractable” is a noun, and not an adjective
  • How a moniker can set you up for success
  • The reason we can look to religion as an example of healthy habits…even if we’re “nonbelievers”
  • The benefit of teaching to form one’s own identity
  • The tactful way you can encourage those around you to be indistractable
  • How we define social antibodies, and how they can help culture, as a whole
  • Why we should lead by example where technology dependence is concerned… but, at the same time, need to push back on the techno panics (I agree to large extent with Nir on this point, but still feel Digital Amnesia is a pressing issue and we’re too early in the game to say much either way)
  • Where blame really lies for technology addiction (and it’s not what you think)
  • Why detoxes, “30 day plans,” and other extremist responses aren’t the solution to calm a distracted mind and life
  • The reason distraction doesn’t always look like what we think (it’s not all Instagram and Candy Crush folks!)
  • The real cause of our distraction and the greatest source of distraction (hint: it’s not an outside source and Evernote is probably okay to use)
  • Why a five year plan approach isn’t the most effective measure of your values…and what is
  • The three key areas to consider when dividing and prioritizing your time

Do I Recommend Indistractable?

As a matter of fact, I do.

Anthony Metivier with a copy of Indistractable

Even though I’m goofing around in this photo, the fact is that without the techniques Nir shares, I’d be a nutcase. I’d never be able to keep up the pace of a nearly-weekly podcast with YouTube videos, blog posts and new memory training products, and read books like his quickly if I couldn’t make myself indistractable.

I learned new concepts from this book and, very importantly, reinforced old ones.

Even if you think you’ve heard it all before, I promise you this book will give you some surprises, compelling new research findings and unexpected help. To wit, you even get a precious analog device that could be worth millions to you one day. (No exaggeration.)

And if you are that rare cat who really has heard it all before, then you already know the wisdom of reinforcement. You have already used the speed of implementation rule to order your copy. Congrats!

In case you don’t know that rule, watch this:

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Nir And Far (Nir’s official website)

Special link for ordering Indistractable

Nir’s scheduling tool

Nir’s distraction guide

Nir’s article on habits vs. routines

Nir on Twitter

Nir Eyal’s Morning Routine on Business Insider

Indistractable’s feature on

Timothy Moser Talks About Memory Skills and Productivity (MMM Podcast)

3 Shocking Ways Smartphone Addiction Erodes Your Brain and Memory

The post Nir Eyal On Creating An Indistractable Life And Techno Panic-Free Focus appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Tired of devices yanking you around? What if the problem lies elsewhere? Nir Eyal's Indistractable will help you focus and enjoy your tech without issue. Tired of devices yanking you around? What if the problem lies elsewhere? Nir Eyal's Indistractable will help you focus and enjoy your tech without issue. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 41:00
Memory Athlete Braden Adams On The Benefits Of Memory Competition Wed, 27 Nov 2019 04:21:48 +0000 0 <p>Braden Adams is one of the most impressive memory athletes of recent times. Learn to improve your memory and how the benefits of memory competition help.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Memory Athlete Braden Adams On The Benefits Of Memory Competition</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Portrait of Memory Athlete Braden Adams with a deck of cardsMemory competition is one way to train your brain and keep your mind sharp.

And who best to talk about how the benefits you can expect from joining a competition than one of the most disciplined students and trainees of memory?

My guest today is fellow Canadian Braden Adams from Chilliwack, BC.

Braden is the cofounder and board member of the Canadian Mind Sports Association on top of being an accomplished memory athlete himself.

He is a multi-time Memory Champion including wins like the  2018 CMSA’s National Memory Champion and the 2018 IAM Canadian Memory Champion.

On this episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast, Braden shares his personal memory journey, beginning purely by chance, and evolving into an absolute passion for mental athleticism.

Braden shares his tips and secrets to his success that just may have you interested in going toe to toe with one of the world’s premiere memory athletes.

Just press play now and you’ll learn all about:

  • The (perhaps unintended) introduction to memory techniques that (probably) 80 to 90 percent of memory athletes in the last decade share
  • Which book may be the most polarizing in the memory world
  • Why memory competitions aren’t as intimidating as you may think
  • How to prepare for “real life” memory challenges in environments that are less than ideal
  • The two-fold benefit to competing in memory sports
  • How memory techniques can help even those with a naturally good memory
  • Why memory training is not so different from drinking water or hitting the gym
  • The way to maximize your time to get the most out of memory exercise
  • How a beloved TV sitcom can help you to remember more than you thought possible
  • The reason magicians make great memory competitors (hint: it’s in an unassuming prop)
  • Why we cannot place limits on our memory

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Braden Adams on Twitter

Braden’s interview with CTV News

Braden’s The Star interview from 2018

“Memorable Victory” on CBC News

2019 Canadian Memory Champion Reveals His Memory Secrets (James Gerwing’s interview referenced in this podcast)

Ready to enter a competition? Read more about the Canadian Mind Sports Association’s 2019 National Memory Championship or check out Art of Memory’s current memory competitions list

The post Memory Athlete Braden Adams On The Benefits Of Memory Competition appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Braden Adams is one of the most impressive memory athletes of recent times. Learn to improve your memory and how the benefits of memory competition help. Braden Adams is one of the most impressive memory athletes of recent times. Learn to improve your memory and how the benefits of memory competition help. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:16:08
Focused Attention: 5 Fun Ways To Experience It And Boost Your Memory Thu, 21 Nov 2019 09:18:01 +0000 0 <p>Focused attention is needed for remembering information over the long term. Everything from mindfulness meditation to rest help. Learn the essential skills that will improve your focus so that you can have better memory now.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Focused Attention: 5 Fun Ways To Experience It And Boost Your Memory</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Dog looking into a camera to illustrate a concept related to focused attentionFocused attention is…look a squirrel!

Aren’t they the cutest?

Gotta get to the laundry.

Now, wait a minute…where was I?

Right! I was writing about focused attention.

It is usually the squirrel’s fault, but often deliberate use of focused attention is needed to do the task at hand or to know what’s happening around you.

So what is focused attention? 

In this post, I’ll explain all about it plus give you five magnetic ways to improve your concentration abilities.

Here’s what I’ll cover on this page:

What is Focused Attention?

Focused attention is the ability of your brain to concentrate on one activity for a specified period of time. 

When you use focused attention, your brain allocates cognitive processing resources that allow you to choose and concentrate on one task at a time.

It is an essential skill that enables you to carry out different tasks in your daily lives with a high level of efficiency. 

However, you need to understand that to pay attention to one stimulus or action, your brain, by default, ignores all other stimuli.

If every stimulus had to be perceived, we would go crazy.

For example, you are at a loud, crowded party, looking for your friend. You look for her blue sequined dress, and you concentrate on hearing her voice over the music. Your brain is continuously, moment by moment, ignoring the voices of other people to focus its attention on finding the voice of your friend.

And there she is! Calling out your name, which your mind was able to hear over the general uproar due to its use of focused attention.

A Few Risky Examples of Focused Attention

Imagine watching TV while cooking. 

You are doing two things, but if your focus wanders away from the pot, you may burn your sauce or over boil the pasta.

On the other hand, when you are concentrating on cooking, you may miss the next Kardashian scandal. 

In effect: 

Your brain uses focused attention to do one task at a time.

If you try to multitask, your performance levels would be low for each task. For instance, it is not possible to try to study while watching TV and retaining the information presented by the book as well as the TV show accurately.

Image of Anthony Metivier helping some local entrepreneurs use Thinkific in Brisbane

Hanging out in a coffee shop after an intense learning session in Brisbane

However, there is something called selective attention that you use when working from a noisy environment like a coffee shop.

How does that work?

A coffee shop is not a quiet place. There are customers ordering lattes, people exchanging gossip or speaking loudly on the phone. However, these levels of background noise are low enough for the mind to concentrate on the work at hand.  

You use focused attention every single day, from when you clean up the table after dinner to when you pick up something that fell off the desk.

Before we move on, let’s take a brief deep dive into other types of attention.

What Are the Different Types of Attention?

The American philosopher and psychologist William James defines attention as “the taking possession by the mind, in clear and vivid form, of one out of what seem several simultaneously possible objects or trains of thought. Focalization, concentration, of consciousness are of its essence. It implies withdrawal from some things in order to deal effectively with others…” (The Principles of Psychology, 1890).

Attention is not a simple process. It is the beginning of other cognitive functions. You need to pay attention before you can comprehend something.

The Sohlberg and Mateer Hierarchical Model breaks attention into five sub-components. 

The model was initially used to test the recovery and development of attentional function in long-term coma patients (after they were awake, of course). However, it was soon found to be useful in determining attentional skills in other people – including students, making this a popular model for the study of “attention”.

The sub-components of the Sohlberg and Mateer Hierarchical Model are:

  • Focalized (Focused) Attention: This refers to your ability to focus attention on one stimulus. For example, when you are writing an exam and need to concentrate entirely on your answers.
  • Sustained Attention: This is your ability to attend to an activity or stimulus over prolonged periods of time. For instance, when you are playing a video game.
  • Selective Attention: This refers to your ability to focus on a specific stimulus in the presence of other distracting stimuli. For example, in a classroom, this would be a student’s ability to maintain focus on the lesson while his peers chatter or pass notes.
  • Alternating Attention: Commonly known as multitasking. This is your ability to change focus attention between stimuli that need different cognitive functions. For example, reading a recipe while preparing a meal.
  • Divided Attention: This refers to your brain’s ability to attend to different stimuli at the same time. For example, when you are driving a car while talking to a passenger.
Image of someone thinking while being talked to for a concept related to divided attention

Even thinking and listening at the same time can divide our attention.

As the cognitive science of attention evolved, it emerged that your ability to pay attention depends on various factors: 

  • It is easier to process a task correctly when you’re motivated and alert than sad or tired, or if the stimulus is monotonous. Anxiety also affects your ability to focus on a job.
  • If a task is complex, your brain finds it more difficult to sustain focused attention on that particular task. It can get distracted easily.
  • Your brain takes less effort to complete a routine task, but if the work is new or unfamiliar more effort is required. 

Your cognitive abilities are affected by your levels of mindfulness when doing a task.

Knowledge of the cognitive science of attention improves our learning of the nuances that affect “attention”. It enables us to understand what processes are needed to function efficiently in our everyday environments and how to eliminate distractions that damage our attention capacities.

What Happens if Your Focused Attention is Damaged? 

Getting distracted is common.

And losing focus or awareness of your surroundings when you are distracted is also usual.

However, if you get easily distracted or have trouble paying attention when conducting everyday tasks like reading a book, listening, writing, or even watching TV, it may be cause for concern.

Image of two brains beaming with light

Your focused attention can get damaged due to disease, disorder, or damage to some parts of the brain.

Hemispatial neglect or heminegligence is a common disorder that can cause loss of focused attention. Hemispatial neglect is a neuropsychological condition caused by damage to one hemisphere of the brain due to stroke or injury. 

ADD Vs. ADHD And How They Degrade Attention

Another known disorder is Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), which majorly affects the attention of the individual, making it difficult for them to detect the target stimuli. 

Usually, a continuous performance test (CPT) detects Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD). However, researchers are now conducting studies to validate the usefulness of a continuous performance test in diagnosing ADHD in children.

Some kids with autism spectrum disorders (including Asperger’s syndrome) also show symptoms which are similar to learning and attention disorders. However, these two conditions are different and need different treatment.

Other disorders that affect focused attention include dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and schizophrenia. But the good news is that memory training helps, such as one of students found when suffering yet another issue: PTSD

The Link Between Focused Attention and Stronger Memory

Have you ever noticed how, when something is interesting, your focused attention is absolute?

For example, you can focus better when watching the World Cup as opposed to when you have to compile the 10-page sales report. 

However, if your boss is waiting for the 10-page sales report, you would work on it despite all distractions to get it ready on time.

image of a person reading a book

So you see, your attention span or focus can change depending on whether the stimulus is exciting (football match) or if the stakes are high (work deadline).

Which also brings to focus the fact that you can train yourself to do everyday tasks with a higher level of focused attention.

And as we all know… 

Concentration or focus is the key to better memory recall. 

Focused attention is essential to well-formed memories and useful recall of information. A lack of attention, on the other hand, leads to difficulty remembering crucial pieces of information.

By becoming more deliberate and paying attention to the task at hand, you can do it with far more efficiency.

What’s even better?

Everything you do to improve your focus will also improve your memory and awareness of your environment.

How can you improve your focused attention?

Let’s find out.

5 Ways to Strengthen Your Focused Attention 

Focus is to memory, what a key is to a lock.

While you can force a lock, if you don’t have the key, it is always easier to open the door with the right set of keys.

By making a few simple changes in the way you work, you can dramatically improve your levels of focus and thereby your ability to remember information fast.

Here are five ways you can strengthen your focused attention:

1. Create Memory Palaces Regularly

Creating Memory Palaces using the Magnetic Memory Method way can quickly improve your attention span.

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

The Magnetic Memory Method Memory Palace approach teaches you how to pay focused attention when you come across new information. 

When combined with Magnetic Recall Rehearsal, this holistic process lets you move information from your working memory into your long-term memory faster and with better permanence.

Memory Palaces also enhance your mindfulness and awareness, which are essential in improving focus.

This video gives you some great hacks to extend your attention span quickly. 


2. Meditate 

Meditation has been practiced for thousands of years to improve focus and concentration.

It is a powerful and scientifically proven method.

What’s more?

Meditation can be practiced anywhere without the need for fancy equipment or extensive training. 

Walking Meditation works for improving focus and concentration

Walking meditation works too!

Moreover, you don’t need to meditate for many months before you can start noticing the benefits of your practice. Within a week of consistent mindfulness meditation, you can experience improved concentration.

Need more motivation? 

Meditation doesn’t just improve focused attention. It also improves your memory, including semantic memory. I memorize lots of Sanskrit in my personal practice to help ensure that.

In an age of endless distractions and heightened stress, incorporating meditation to improve concentration, eliminate emotional problems, and refocus your mind is crucial. 

Meditation has two categories – focused attention meditation and open monitoring meditation

During focused attention meditation, you pay attention to a single object like a mantra, a candle, or your breathing

When you practice open monitoring meditation, your attention is open. You remain aware of everything that is happening, including your thoughts, feelings, emotions, sounds, and bodily sensations.

Here’s a simple, step­-by­-step guide you can use every day to meditate.

  1. Choose a time. Morning, noon, evening, it doesn’t matter. 
  2. Select a place to meditate. It could be your backyard garden or bedroom floor.
  3. Set a timer (This is optional). Initially, set the timer for five minutes and when it rings, turn it off and then sit a little longer. 
  4. Sit and do nothing else. Focus on a specific emotion or general thoughts and feelings. You can even concentrate on your breathing.
  5. When you finally arrive, enjoy, and observe.

Practice this simple form of mindfulness meditation for just five minutes a day, four times a week, and you’ll see improvements in many aspects of your life, including memory and focus. 

Check out The Five-Fold Path To Memory Improvement, if you are keen on a more advanced approach to meditation (the one I use most often).

3. Exercise 

Working out is an excellent way to improve focus.

Apart from improving your happiness quotient and keeping you fit, regular exercise can boost your levels of attention and concentration. 

Image of Anthony Metivier performing deadlifts

Deadlifting helps improve my focused attention and memory. Do you go to the gym?

One study observed that the attention spans of Dutch school pupils improved when 20-minute bouts of aerobics-style exercise interspersed their lessons. 

In another study, a large randomized controlled trial in the US looked at the effects of daily after-school sports activities on the fitness levels of children. Predictably, the study found that the students got healthier. 

What was more interesting was that the students also became more adept at ignoring distractions and multitasking.

The takeaway:

If you’re still thinking about going for a run, get on with it. Take action now to improve your focus and memory. 

4. Rest 

Resting to improve focus may seem a bit odd.

But it’s true.

Rest by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang Book Cover

Silicon Valley futurist Alex Soojung-Kim Pang in his book Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, says successful people throughout history who displayed high levels of focus and concentration took a lot of “deliberate rest”.

From Charles Darwin to Ernest Hemingway to Stephen King, every one of these creative and highly accomplished people took “brain breaks” for extended periods of time to relax and rejuvenate.

When our brain is in resting mode, it switches to the highly active Default Mode Network (DMN). When you focus attention on the outside world, you suppress this default mode of neural processing. 

These brain breaks allow you to update information and gain access to deeper aspects of yourselves, thereby enhancing your resilience, creativity, and decision-making capabilities.

Once you are back from your rest, you can focus better on the tasks at hand.

5. Practice Single-tasking 

Focusing on one task at a time is your brain’s natural way of doing things.

When you avoid multitasking, you make fewer errors. Fewer errors also mean less stress, and that can enable you to concentrate better

Single-tasking also helps to stabilize your mood and improve your memory since you pay more attention to one singular activity.

Give Tasks the Attention They Need

When driving, focus on the road. When eating breakfast, focus on your cereal or avocado-toast. When writing a report, focus on the specific task, and you’ll see how fast and efficiently you’ll get it done.

Giving each task the attention it needs improves your overall efficiency while enabling your mind to transfer information into your working memory

Deliberate attention, in turn, improves retention and recall.

Need more ways to improve memory?

Why not get started with the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass

The post Focused Attention: 5 Fun Ways To Experience It And Boost Your Memory appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Focused attention is needed for remembering information over the long term. Everything from mindfulness meditation to rest help. Learn the essential skills that will improve your focus so that you can have better memory now. Focused attention is needed for remembering information over the long term. Everything from mindfulness meditation to rest help. Learn the essential skills that will improve your focus so that you can have better memory now. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 35:03
Lev Goldentouch On The Ultimate Key To Study Results Without Strain Thu, 14 Nov 2019 00:16:38 +0000 0 <p>Lev Goldentouch is the legendary mnemonist who helped Jonathan Levi become a SuperLearner. Learn about his "key to study" skills from this interview now. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Lev Goldentouch On The Ultimate Key To Study Results Without Strain</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Portrait of Lev Goldentouch, creator of Key to StudyHow many books have you read this year?

What about time spent reading news articles, magazines, or journals?

The numbers are shockingly low.

24 percent of adults surveyed hadn’t even read part of a book last year.

Even more surprising, in 2017, people in the U.S. over age 15 only spent, on average, 16.8 minutes a day reading for pleasure, or not required for work or school.

It seems a bit surreal doesn’t it?

Before television, radio, and, most recently, the smartphone, reading was one’s primary source of both entertainment and a source of news.

If you wanted to stay up to date on current events you picked up a newspaper. If you were looking for a way to escape the day to day humdrum of life you picked up you searched out your favorite author’s newest work of fiction.

It’s astounding to me that reading as a whole has declined so much. It’s no secret that reading is a great method of mental stimulation, stress reducer, and obvious knowledge booster and vocabulary expander. 

The benefits to reading expand far beyond these named few and even boast a benefit that may surprise you…the simple act of reading can improve your memory.

Well, don’t fret. Because…

Lev Goldentouch Has The “Key To Study” That Helps People Read More… Faster!

My guest today is Lev Goldentouch.

He is an author, machine learning and information expert, as well as a lifehacker and technology guru. Through his blog, Key to Study, Lev teaches eager students his methods for improving their reading speed, retention, and therefore, their memory.

I know his skills in a more personal way too. We even share a cafe Memory Palace!

Anthony Metivier and Lev Goldentouch in a Tel Aviv Memory Palace

Dr. Lev Goldentouch and Dr. Anthony Metivier in Tel Aviv

So here’s why this interview is so important for you to hear:

If you want to remember more of what you read with less effort…

If you’ve tried other methods to improve your memory, relying too much on apps programs, and are looking for a change…

If you have a desire to transform your life by picking up a good book…

You’ve come to the right place. This podcast is a real page turner.

It’s as simple as clicking the play button above to discover:

  • The difference between a memory expert, a speed reading expert, and a machine learning expert
  • The overlooked way that people can forget things they would have liked to have remembered (Note: developing some dual-handedness skills can help too)
  • How to compare and contrast the different kinds of reading
  • Why actually having an interest in a subject is an important prerequisite to reading
  • The secret to becoming both more creative and spontaneous (it may surprise you)
  • How visualization is a universal tool, even for those blind since birth
  • Why your goals should meet certain criteria in order for you to be able to achieve them
  • The reason to copy a teacher and not a god or fictional character
  • The power of dancing to improve your memory
  • How it is possible to shape your future and to overcome bad fortune
  • What style of teaching makes a teacher the most effective

I hope you enjoy this episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast and please consider investing in Lev’s complete training course. If you struggle with getting through learning materials, here’s how to complete a memory course rapidly.

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Lev Goldentouch’s Key to Study Premium Training Course

Lev Goldentouch on Amazon

Lev Goldentouch on Twitter

The Simple Reading Technique That Prepares Your Memory For Anything (MMM Blog)

How to Study Fast: A Guide to High-Volume Learning At Speed

11 Reasons You Should Re-read At Least One Book Every Month

The post Lev Goldentouch On The Ultimate Key To Study Results Without Strain appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Lev Goldentouch is the legendary mnemonist who helped Jonathan Levi become a SuperLearner. Learn about his "key to study" skills from this interview now. Lev Goldentouch is the legendary mnemonist who helped Jonathan Levi become a SuperLearner. Learn about his "key to study" skills from this interview now. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 53:21
The Mandela Effect: Is Your Memory Playing Tricks on You? Wed, 06 Nov 2019 22:11:42 +0000 2 <p>The Mandela Effect confuses a lot of people. It's actually a problem with human memory and the brain. These Mandela Effect examples and science explain all.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">The Mandela Effect: Is Your Memory Playing Tricks on You?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of Darth Vader toy to illustrate a concept related to the Mandela EffectHave you ever seen or heard something that felt… just a little off?

Maybe you’re fairly certain you remember an event one way, but when you do a Google search, the information you find doesn’t line up with your memory.

It can be frustrating, confusing, and can even make you wonder if you’re starting to lose your mind (or if you’ve stumbled on a government conspiracy).

Turns out, there’s a name for what you just experienced. It’s called the Mandela Effect, and it’s more common than you might have imagined.

But what is this phenomenon, and why is it called the Mandela Effect?

What Is the Mandela Effect?

The Mandela Effect is a strange occurrence where large groups of people remember an event that didn’t occur or something that never existed. The group usually recalls the exact same thing in the exact same way.

It’s named after Nelson Mandela and his supposed death in prison in the 1980s. In fact, this former South African president was released from prison in 1990 and lived until 2013.


Back in 2009, Fiona Broome launched a website dedicated to the exploration of the Mandela Effect. She wanted to explore and document “memories that didn’t match our current reality and its history.”

Since that time, the Mandela Effect has continued to capture our collective attention. Fun fact: the subject was even broached by the writers of The X-Files (the recent reboot).

Now that you know a little more about what the effect is, let’s look at three of the most famous examples.

Mandela Effect Examples You Might Recognize

What types of events and products could cause mass mis-remembering? Here are a few times where memories don’t match the facts.

Nelson Mandela died in prison in the 1980s

The phenomenon that started it all…

Nelson Mandela was a South African anti-apartheid political leader who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999. Before he was elected, he served a total of 27 (non-consecutive) years in prison for various political crimes against the state. 

While he did suffer from tuberculosis in the late 1980s, he did not die. In fact, he was released from prison in 1990, and went on to be elected President just over 4 years later.

I know these facts because… I went and bought the book. This is my copy of The Long Walk to Freedom, and I read it as part of walking my talk by using the critical thinking suggestions I’ll share with you below:

Long walk to freedom by Nelson Mandela in the hand of Anthony Metivier for Mandela Effect Magnetic Memory Method Blog Feature Image

Reading is a great way to get acquainted with the facts.

The Berenstain Bears are a family affair

One of the most famous examples of the Mandela Effect are the Berenstein… err… Berenstain Bears.

If you Google “Berenstain Bears,” one of the first people also ask questions is: “why did they change the name of the Berenstain Bears?”

Since their original publication in 1962, these delightful treehouse-dwelling bears have been beloved by many. In the 1980s, the characters experienced an upswing in product licensing. This included an animated series, software and video games, museum exhibits, and even an off-Broadway musical.

So, despite a large number of parents and children remembering the “Berenstein Bears,” there’s more than enough evidence out there that the name was always “Berenstain.”

Mandela Effect examples, Star Wars, Luke I am your father

Obi Wan killed your father!

One of the most famous (and most repeated) misquotes comes from one of the greatest movie franchises in history.

In the dialogue between Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader in 1980’s Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, Vader does not say “Luke, I am your father.”

Despite what the widely repeated and meme-d quote would have you believe, Darth Vader’s revelation has one single word changed: “No, I am your father.”

Sorry, movie buffs. You’ve been saying it wrong for almost 4 decades.

Now that you’ve seen a few Mandela Effect examples, you might wonder: how can so many people be convinced of the same (wrong) events and occurrences?

The Explanations Are Out There

There are many different explanations for what’s going on, ranging from the fanciful to the mundane.

Storytelling is woven into the human experience. From our earliest recorded history, human beings have told each other stories to share wisdom. And the more imaginative the story (including reincarnation memories), the more entertainment value it holds for the listener.

When it comes time to explain what’s really behind the Mandela Effect, stories come out of the woodwork.

Multiverse, Parallel Universe, or the Matrix?

One of the most-shared fanciful storylines is that humanity is experiencing an alternate reality. 

Alternate Realities

Some people believe we’re constantly sliding between parallel realities, and the memories that don’t make any sense are from an alternate reality. Say, one where the Berenstein Bears existed. 

Another angle on this theory is that we’re experiencing a many-worlds interpretation. It’s a theory of quantum mechanics, implying that all possible outcomes are physically realized in some universe or other.

Mandela Effect, alternate realities

Others believe we’re living in a version of the Matrix (or a large-scale holodeck), and the Mandela Effect memories are a glitch. Much like the déjà vu Neo experiences when the black cat walks past the door twice in The Matrix.

There’s even a theory that certain quantum science tests, including a CERN project or two, may have transformed the fabric of our reality.

And because quantum physics is such a complex science, there is no way to scientifically disprove any of these theories. But… there is also no scientific proof.

There is, however, a human aspect to these types of misremembering.

Human Error

To err is human, or so goes the line in Alexander Pope’s An Essay on Criticism.

Were you aware that for most big sporting events in the United States (the Super Bowl, World Series, etc) the “winner” merchandise gets printed ahead of time? Do you wonder what happens to the t-shirts, hats, and other merch of the losing team?

And did you know that in 1948, the Chicago Tribune printed papers declaring Thomas Dewey the victor over Harry Truman, before the final electoral count came in? Or that in 1956 the New York Times ran an item announcing the death of Fidel Castro (who didn’t actually die until 2016)?

Whether it’s due to human error or bad reporting, there are times when false information gets out into the world.

Now let’s take a look at the honest truth… your brain is likely the culprit in any Mandela Effect occurrences. 

Your Brain is (Probably) Playing Tricks on You

“Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.” ~Carl Sagan

Our minds are complex. Even in 2019, neuroscientists are still figuring out basic facts about the human brain.

And that complex system gets things wrong. A lot.

false memories

Take Hermann Ebbinghaus’s forgetting curve. His research observed that most people forget newly acquired information within the span of a few hours. And even those with stronger memories kept those facts for at most a few days.

It’s possible to overcome the forgetting curve, but it takes hard work and reinforcing what you learn at regular intervals.

Chances are, current events and popular culture tidbits aren’t the kind of thing you spend time trying to memorize. So it stands to reason, most of those memories aren’t retained.

Compounding the issue is the fallibility of memory in general.

False Memory Syndrome and Pattern Recognition

False memories occur when a person recalls something that did not happen or happened differently than they recall. Sound familiar?

Sigmund Freud and Pierre Janet initially investigated this psychological phenomenon.

Since that time, suggestibility, the incorporation of misinformation, associated information, and source misattribution have been suggested as mechanisms to explain false memory syndrome. Episodic memory might also play a role.

The unreliability of eyewitness reports has long been known. Simply changing an article in a question (for example, “the” vs “a” referring to an object in question) can change the answer a witness gives about what they saw. 

Priming – or factors that happen before an event – can affect a person’s recall. Information learned after the fact can also skew what an eyewitness remembers.

The brain likes to encode similar memories into categories so it can make sense of the world. And humans naturally tend to look for patterns. Chunking allows the brain to store information in easy-to-remember packets.

Incorrect recall can also be caused by effort after meaning. This is the brain’s persistent effort to put unfamiliar details into context and transform information to make it more understandable. Also responsible for memory errors – especially with age – is confabulation, where your brain fills gaps to make more sense of what it sees and hears.

confabulation, false memory syndrome

Elderly woman sleeping with string on her finger

And even people with aphantasia (who don’t have the capacity to form mental images) usually still have the capacity to recall memories. The memory is just a conceptual list of things that occurred, rather than a video playing in their head. 

But does the written word make a difference in how we remember things? 

The Oddity of Reading

The brain is quite skilled at making sense out of randomness. 

Take, for example, our ability to raed ltteers and wrods taht are in teh worng oredr. Randomizing letters in the middle of words has “little or no effect on the ability of skilled readers to understand the text.” However, it does result in slower reading speeds for most people.

pattern recognition

Coming back to the Mandela Effect examples above, let’s look at how Froot Loops also fits the brain’s desire for spelling “sense.”

“Berenstain” is a weird word that can’t be correct due to the incongruity between children’s literature and what “stain” means. The mind probably corrects it to fit the appropriate picture. In similar fashion, Froot Loops shares in this “make it fit” correction. 

Every time I think of the Berenstain Bears, the comedy film The Bad News Bears comes to mind. But because there is no spelling incongruity, there is less likelihood of The Bad News Bears becoming a Mandela Effect trend.

Leaving behind the individual human brain for a moment, let’s explore the collective human brain: the internet.

Your Brain, Online

The Mandela Effect was not documented until the Internet Age. 

And I would be remiss if this post didn’t cover the role the internet plays in this discussion. Never before in human history has information flowed so freely, and been shared so widely. 

Misconceptions and falsehoods easily gain traction because of their entertainment value. Then they are quickly and easily shared via the seemingly endless online platforms connecting the human race. 

In a world where tweets about earthquakes move faster than the earthquake itself, false information spreads just as quickly. And with each repetition, the frequently repeated errors become part of our collective reality.

Mandela Effect, internet age, social media

So with the cards stacked against us – and our memories letting us down – how can we tell what memories are true, and what’s a figment of our imaginations?

It’s time to bust out the debunking tools.

Why Critical Thinking is Key

In a world of false memories, human error, internet untruths, presumptive baloney, and high emotions, you need a way to figure out what is truthful and factual.

While there are several different definitions of critical thinking, for the purposes of this post we’ll keep it simple. Critical thinking involves analyzing facts to come to a well-thought-out conclusion.

critical thinking, memory

In the words of Carl Sagan, we can use critical thinking as our own personal “Baloney Detection Kit.”

In science, every experiment begins with facts. These might be results, data, observations, measurements… which are then put to the test.

Michael Shermer drew on Sagan’s work, and created a newer version of the kit. Here are his 10 Baloney Detection Questions:

  1. How reliable is the source of the claim?
  2. Does the source often make similar claims?
  3. Have the claims been verified by someone else?
  4. Does this fit with the way the world works?
  5. Has anyone tried to disprove this claim? 
  6. Where does the preponderance of evidence point?
  7. Are the people making the claim playing by the rules of science? 
  8. Are they providing positive evidence?
  9. Does the new theory account for as many phenomena as the old theory?
  10. Are personal beliefs / ideologies driving the claim?


By asking these questions, you can determine if:

  • The data is cherry-picked to support a particular belief,
  • The source has an open mind (but “not so open their brains fall out”),
  • The experiment is repeatable with the same results, 
  • There are supporting materials,
  • Most of the evidence leans in one direction,
  • There is evidence in favor of the theory (rather than negative evidence),
  • The new theory explains all the things the old theory explained, 
  • There is confirmation bias,
  • And you’re not just being tricked by something like the flashbulb memory phenomenon.

So, by putting the Mandela Effect to the Baloney Detection test, you can determine that none of the prevailing theories hold water.

Given the facts, and faced with a faulty memory, is there anything else you can do to strengthen your Baloney Detector?

The Power of Positive Skepticism 

Keeping a skeptical outlook can help you fine tune your ability to distinguish between fact and fiction.

But did you know skepticism can also help your memory?

skepticism, skepticism and memory

You may be skeptical of this claim… but it’s true. Here are a few reasons why.

  1. Skeptics tend to follow the laws of a universal rule.

They believe the responsibility for demonstrating the validity of a claim falls on the person making the claim.

  1. Skeptics are often quite determined.

They badly want to get at the truth. So they’re able to tackle memory training with a heck of a lot of diligence.

  1. Skeptics end up creating multiple levels of energy.

They begin, determined their memories can’t be improved. And when they start to realize they’re wrong, a new type of energy takes its place — the energy of excitement about their “surprising” results.

This happens because they go out and investigate. They use their Baloney Detector… and find out they were feeding themselves baloney. Namely, that they couldn’t improve their memories.

Are you skeptical yet?

Mandela Effect: Trick or Truth?

So what about you? Are you convinced that the more out-there explanations of the Mandela Effect are, in fact, baloney? 😉

And do you want to learn more about how to improve your memory, so you’re never taken in by another false memory or cultural phenomenon?

The good news is, you’re in the right place.

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Register for my free course, and I’ll send you my free memory improvement worksheets and videos.

Together, we’ll unlock your natural ability to learn and remember anything, fast – without the woo-woo of things like the Mandela Effect obscuring the bright light of real memory improvement.

The post The Mandela Effect: Is Your Memory Playing Tricks on You? appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

The Mandela Effect confuses a lot of people. It's actually a problem with human memory and the brain. These Mandela Effect examples and science explain all. The Mandela Effect confuses a lot of people. It's actually a problem with human memory and the brain. These Mandela Effect examples and science explain all. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 29:43
2019 Canadian Memory Champion Reveals His Memory Secrets Tue, 29 Oct 2019 02:45:45 +0000 2 <p>James Gerwing completed the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass a while ago. In 2019, he became the Canadian memory champion. Learn how he did it now.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">2019 Canadian Memory Champion Reveals His Memory Secrets</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Portrait of 2019 Canadian Memory Champion James Gerwing For Magnetic Memory Method PodcastWant to become a memory champion?


Competition can encourage you to function at your absolute highest level.

Even if…

You’re retired.

To help you understand exactly why and how anyone can learn so much from joining a memory competition, today’s guest is James Gerwing.

Or Jim, as he signed off when he wrote to tell me:

Anthony, Jim Gerwing, here. About 5 years ago, I began taking your online course and then went into some memory competitions. I am the 4 time, current, undefeated (and record holder) of the Alberta memory championships.

Even better: I just won the 2019 Canadian Memory Championships (AND the first ever pan-provincial championship). Thanks for your input.

As you’re about to learn, I had no solid idea just what he meant by “input”!

But I wasn’t entirely clueless either…

As you can see from my State of Your Memory Address from 2016, he’d already broken a few memory competition records back then.

James Gerwing Magnetic Memory Method Review Success Email

You just have to love what emerges from consistent practice and exploration of these powerful techniques!

And that’s why I just had to get James on the show to talk about how exactly the Magnetic Memory Method served along the way.

About Memory Champion James Gerwing

James is the 2019 Canadian Memory Champion.

He’s also the winner of the 2019 and 2017 Alberta Memory Championships, and earned the bronze medal at the 2018 Canadian Memory Championships in Toronto.

He’s obviously a memory expert too, and has even created his own “Mind Sharp” course.

Portrait of 2019 Canadian Memory Champion James Gerwing Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass Review

In this Magnetic Memory Method Podcast interview, James shares his personal journey of memory improvement, and eventually, entry into the world of memory competitions.

Now retired from an impressive career as an educator, James plans to continue competing. I’m confident he will continue to win!

Do You Have To Become A Memory Champion To Learn These Techniques?

No, but some experience with competition helps.

For example, my own memory skills accelerated in unexpected ways after I sat to compete for charity with Dave Farrow.

Obviously, competition isn’t for everyone, but as Simon Luisi has written on the Canadian Memory Championships site:

“One of the best ways [to improve memory] is to participate in a memory competition.”

Whatever side of the fence you stand regarding competition, I encourage you to take a few minutes and listen to James’ perspective.

Canadian Memory Competition picture with James Gerwing

James Gerwing at a 2018 Canadian Memory Competition on the road to winning the 2019 national top spot.

You just might reconsider where your opinion falls. I know I had and it handed me more knowledge than I ever could have expected! 

Just press play above and you’ll discover:

  • How a love of memory can be ignited at a young age, and memory techniques are vital to the education system
  • The reason competition performance differs from private practice in memory work
  • Why stress can be beneficial to memory improvement
  • The rationale of why memory techniques are not utilized in everyday life…and why they should be
  • How a memory champion really prepares for competition
  • A practical example of the use of the Major Method, and a welcome hack for “odd numbers out”
  • A proven way to relate cards, numbers, Magnetic Stations, and a PAO list
  • Why Memory Palace journeys don’t always have to be linear
  • When your memory associations are better off left unsaid
  • The reason memory competitions aren’t actually an external competition, but a solo performance
  • Plus much, much more, because…

… a second part to this interview is exclusive to the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass. It’s already available in the card course James used to learn the skills that helped him win!

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

James’s interview the Edmonton Prime Times

James’s Mind Sharp Course

Major System Secrets And The Future Of Your Memory With Florian Dellé (referenced in this interview)

Next Level Memory Training Secrets with USA Memory Champ John Graham (referenced in this interview)

Katie Kermode On Memory Competition and Casual, Everyday Mnemonics

Nelson Dellis on Remember It! And Visual Memory Techniques

Idriz Zogaj On The Truth About Memory Training Apps

Memory Improvement Fun And Games: Mark Channon Talks About How To Remember Anything

Do you want to join in the competition? Check out Art of Memory’s current memory competitions list

And if you need help, learn how to create an UNSHAKEABLE Memory Palace Training Routine, so you stand a chance of winning too. Both in learning, competition and life overall.

The post 2019 Canadian Memory Champion Reveals His Memory Secrets appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

James Gerwing completed the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass a while ago. In 2019, he became the Canadian memory champion. Learn how he did it now. James Gerwing completed the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass a while ago. In 2019, he became the Canadian memory champion. Learn how he did it now. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 51:18
Iconic Memory Defined And Why Photographic Memory DOES NOT Exist Thu, 17 Oct 2019 20:35:33 +0000 2 <p>Iconic memory explains why images disappear from our minds in a flash. But it's not photographic memory, even if it affects short term and long term memory.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Iconic Memory Defined And Why Photographic Memory DOES NOT Exist</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a wooden camera for iconic memory blog postShe disappeared in a flash, but when I closed my eyes, I could see her beautiful face looking pleadingly in my direction. 

Reads like romantic fiction, doesn’t it?

It’s actually your iconic memory recalling a visual stimulus in its technicolor glory.

In this post, you’ll learn all about iconic memory, why it’s important and how to improve it to enable better memory and recall. I’ll also break a few myths about picture-perfect memories.

Here’s what I’ll cover in this post:

  • What Is An Iconic Memory?
  • Why Iconic Memory is Not The Same as a Photographic Memory
  • How is Iconic Memory formed?
  • George Sperling & Other Experiments 
  • How Does Iconic Memory Move to Long-Term Memory?
  • What Function Does Iconic Memory Serve?
  • How Can You strengthen your Iconic Memory? 

What Is An Iconic Memory?

Iconic memory is one type of sensory memory. 


It is a short-term visual memory and lasts only a few seconds before getting discarded.

Your brain uses iconic memory to remember (for a brief time) an image you have seen around you. 

Your sensory memory stores all information that you experience through your five major senses – touch, taste, sight, hearing, and smell. Check out these sensory memory exercises for a wild, mental adventure.

Such storage of all stimuli is an automatic response by your brain. If sufficient attention is given to this stimulus, the information may then pass into your short-term memory, and from there, it can get encoded into your long-term memory. 

However, in most cases, sensory information is thrown out within a few seconds.

Image of a woman in VR glasses to express a concept related to iconic memory

This Puts The “Icon” In Iconic

When some kind of sensory input enters your visual system, it goes into your iconic memory. The visual system includes the iconic memory, visual short-term memory and long-term memory.

Iconic memory is simply your brain’s way of processing visual information. The brain sees this information as distinct flashes or ‘icons,’ hence the name iconic.

For instance, imagine you are driving through the countryside and a lovely cottage with a red front door flashes past. You continue to drive, but can still see the “image” in your mind’s eye. 

This after-image of the cottage in your mind’s eye even after it ceases to exist in your visual plain is the working of your iconic memory.

Here are some other examples of iconic memory:

  • Your friend is reading a book, and you ask her which books is it. Your friend shows you the cover of the book for just a brief moment before hiding it, leaving you with only the impression, or iconic memory, of what the book’s cover looked like.
  • You come home one evening and as you turn on the living room light the bulb burns out, leaving you in darkness. But your mind’s eye can still visualize (albeit briefly) what the room looked like in the luminance of the bulb.

In other words, your brain takes a snapshot of every image it “sees” and stores that as an after-image only for a few seconds in your iconic memory. Apparently, this happens in your brain, even if you have aphantasia.

The question is… how is it like a camera taking a picture?

Is it the same as a photographic memory?

Iconic Memory is Not The Same as a Photographic Memory

Let’s get one thing clear.

Photographic memory does not exist.

The phenomenon where you have instantaneous recall of any and all events by uniting your visual, spatial, audio, and verbal memories is not possible by humans.

You may have heard that Teddy Roosevelt could repeat aloud entire newspaper pages as if he was reading from it, or of artists like Arturo Toscanini, who was able to conduct the opera from memory after his eyesight became too poor to read the music. 

Image of a woman looking at herself in a camera with text to express a problem with photographic memory

Many world champions and memory experts like Nelson Dellis can memorize and recall many digits of Pi, but there is no verified case which shows memory working like a camera with total and complete recall. 

But what if you can remember your experience in great detail – right down to the color of the car that you took to go to Disneyland when you were five years old? Does that mean you have a photographic memory?

Simple answer: No.

What you can have is an eidetic memory – a memory that is very vivid and has great potential for recall.

However, to clarify – eidetic memory is not photographic memory. It simply means you can remember many things in great detail, but not all the details. 

More importantly, eidetikers may even invent details that were never there.

Quick side note:

Some researchers found that a mutated fruit fly could potentially possess a form of photographic memory. 

Over the course of their brief lives, a fruit fly with a boosted CREB gene could have a form of photographic memory. While humans also share DNA with fruit flies, the potential for a similar boost in humans is yet to be researched.

So, if iconic memory isn’t photographic, why do we even need it?

It seems unimportant, right?

Maybe not. You’ll know in a minute.

Let’s first understand how iconic memories are made.

Photographic Memory Puzzle Piece portrait on Magnetic Memory Method Blog

How Is Iconic Memory Formed?

The occipital lobe is the central part of the brain involved in iconic memory. This lobe is responsible for processing and regulating visual information.

When you “see” something, the visual information is received by the photoreceptor cells in the eyes and sent to the occipital lobe. Here it is stored for a few milliseconds before being it is forgotten or transferred to the temporal lobe. 

This visual memory or visual persistence is then converted from visual short-term memory to long-term memory by the hippocampus, which is located inside the temporal lobe.

There may be psychological visual persistence of a visual stimulus for some time after its physical offset. There are three senses where it can persist.

The Three Persistences

The first is neural persistence which occurs when neural activity continues after the stimuli are gone.

The second is visible persistence – when you continue to see an image even though it is gone, such as with a flash of bright light.

The third is informational persistence –  when an observer continues to retain information about a visual stimulus for some time after the stimulus is gone.

Research into these three stages of visual persistence was done by Max Coltheart.

In 1980, Max Coltheart performed research into the three stages of visual persistence.

His study also suggests that any physical stimulus must be temporarily attached to a representation in semantic memory. However, episodic memory is not involved in this process. This temporary storage of information is what constitutes iconic memory. 

Iconic memory capacity is also extremely brief. Usually, the duration of iconic memory is less than one second, and this duration is fixed irrespective of how long visual stimulus is displayed.  

Iconic vs Echoic Memory

The iconic memory and echoic (auditory) memory are the two most extensively studied sensory memories.

The other main types of sensory memory include touch or haptic memory, taste or gustatory memory, and smell or olfactory memory. 

Binaural Beats and Memory Improvement Magnetic Memory Method Podcast

One big difference between iconic memory and echoic memory is regarding the duration and capacity. 

While echoic memory lasts up to 3-4 seconds, iconic memory or short-term visual memory lasts only up to one second. However, while iconic memory can preserve 8-9 items, the capacity of the echoic memory is 4-5 items.

George Sperling & Other Experiments With Iconic Memory

American cognitive psychologist George Sperling documented the existence of iconic memory. 

Cognitive psychology is the study of mental processes such as memory, perception, problem-solving, attention, language use, etc.

Through several experiments, Sperling showed that humans store a perfect image of the visual world for a brief moment – as icons – before it is discarded from memory.

However, it was psychologist Ulric Neisser who in 1967 labeled this form of quickly fading visual memory as iconic memory.

Sperling’s initial experiment used a matrix with three rows of three letters. The participants were asked to look at a visual display of letters, for a short period, and then recall them immediately. Under this technique, subjects were able to, on average, recall 4-5 letters of the 9 they were given. 

The results helped Sperling conclude that our short-term visual memory can hold the information even if it is exposed to it for a few seconds. 

He reasoned that the reason the subjects were not able to recall all of the letters was that this memory disappeared in less than a second.

Sperling didn’t stop there. Next, he tried a variation to this experiment, known as the partial report method. 

In this partial report method, after the visual display of letters, Sperling sounded a high, medium, or low tone. The tone was a cue for the participants. Depending on which tone was sounded, the participant read the high, medium, or low row of letters.

This time around, when the participants had a cue they were able to recall more letters. The partial-report experiments determined that even though we see all the visual image of letters, we cannot recall them all because the memory is fleeting. 

While Sperling’s experiments with memory tasks mainly tested the information related to a stimulus, others such as Coltheart performed directs tests of visual persistence. 

Coltheart also questioned the relation between visual persistence and iconic memory.

In his report, Iconic memory and visible persistence. Perception and Psychophysics, (27, 183-228), Coltheart says “Iconic memory and visible persistence are often treated as the same. However, whether these two phenomenon are the same is an empirical question.

“The earlier review established that two properties of visible persistence are 1) an inverse relationship with stimulus duration and 2) an inverse relationship with stimulus luminance, or intensity. Iconic memory must exhibit these two properties before it can be equated with visible persistence. 

“There is no evidence that the duration of iconic memory and luminance are inversely related. Furthermore, although there is some evidence that increasing stimulus duration has an effect on iconic memory persistence, this effect is direct rather than inverse. Thus, visible persistence—which is very sensitive to physical display features—and iconic memory seem to behave differently.”

Nearly two decades after Sperling’s original experiments, visual persistence and informational persistence emerged as two distinct components of visual sensory memory.

How Does Iconic Memory Move to Long-Term Memory?

A lot of focused attention is needed to move information from iconic memory to durable storage – which is your short-term memory and subsequently, your long-term memory. 

The human memory system works on encoding, storage, and retrieval of information. In 1968, Atkinson and Shiffrin suggested this model for human memory. It includes three components – sensory memory, short-term memory, and long-term memory. 

Sunglasses reflecting a scholarly bookshelf

The Human Memory System Simplified

Here’s a simplistic explanation on how your memory system works:

In the first stage, any incoming sensory or perceptual information is held in the sensory memory. The information gathered through the senses is an exact copy of what you perceive. This information is stored in your sensory memory for a very short duration. 

For instance, as soon as you get a visual stimulus – you see an apple – it is processed by your eyes and moved into the occipital lobe. Next, recognition occurs, and this information is then placed into iconic memory. All this takes place very quickly.

From the iconic memory, only a limited amount of information that you consciously pay attention to moves into the visual working memory – this is your short-term memory for visual stimuli. Everything else is discarded.

This short-term memory does not have unlimited capacity. It can only store a limited amount of information

Conscious perception makes a significant difference in the memory process.

The information can remain in the working memory for several minutes before being discarded or stored in long term memory.

Over time, memories get etched in long-term storage. For this, you need rehearsal and petition to practice your recall of information which enables you to move information from short-term to long-term memory.  

What Function Does Iconic Memory Serve?

If iconic memory lasts only for a few microseconds, is it at all important?


The role of iconic memory in creating new memory is significant.

This form of sensory memory provides a steady stream of visual information to the brain, which can then be processed by your short-term memory into more stable and long-term forms of memory.

Scientists are also using iconic memory to make revolutionary discoveries. One of them is the role of this memory in change blindness or our inability to detect significant changes in our visual field. 

In certain experiments, they discovered that we tend to have trouble with change detection from one scene to another if we face brief intervals between them. 

According to researchers, that happens because that delay or interruption wipes out the iconic memory of the scene, which makes detecting differences all the more difficult if not downright impossible.

Iconic memory loss has also been linked to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, so it may be prudent to strengthen this type of sensory perception.

Image of a man with rainbow passing through his head to illustrate a concept related to adult coloring books

How Can You Strengthen your Iconic Memory?

Since iconic memory is one type of sensory memory, improving your overall sensory perceptions will result in better retention of visual information.

Attention also plays a vital role in not only transferring information from iconic to working memory but also when the iconic memory is formed.

According to this study, the formation of iconic memory is disrupted when attention is diverted even if that happens for a brief period of time. 

The human mind is capable of faultless information processing, just like a computer. It takes in information, organizes and stores it to be retrieved at a later time. 

However, for this information processing to be accurate, you need to be aware and deliberate in your learning.

Be Intentional To Have Better Memory

When you are intentional, you perceive things better.

Why is that?

Because you are paying attention to everything around you – all your senses are sharper and focused on absorbing the information around you.

Greater attention means better perception, which results in good memory.

Memory exercises can be used to strengthen your attention which in turn will improve retention and recall.

However, your memory improvement training should always be linked to memorizing information that will immediately improve your life. It should always be measurable since tracking your outcomes leads to rapid improvement.

This is where creating Memory Palaces using the Magnetic Memory Method can come in handy. 

It enables you to unlock the power of all types of memory – autobiographical, sensory, episodic, semantic, procedural and more so that you can move information into long term memory faster and with predictable and reliable permanence. 

Keen to unlock your natural ability to learn and remember anything fast? 

Why not try the Magnetic Memory Method today? 

The post Iconic Memory Defined And Why Photographic Memory DOES NOT Exist appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Iconic memory explains why images disappear from our minds in a flash. But it's not photographic memory, even if it affects short term and long term memory. Iconic memory explains why images disappear from our minds in a flash. But it's not photographic memory, even if it affects short term and long term memory. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 29:28
Memory Palace Software: Matthew Snow on Using MemoryFiler Thu, 10 Oct 2019 07:01:04 +0000 0 <p>Looking for Memory Palace software? Check out Matthew Snow's MemoryFiler. It promises to help you use the method of loci faster and better. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Memory Palace Software: Matthew Snow on Using MemoryFiler</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> MemoryFiler Memory Palace Software LogoEver heard the phrase “Work smarter, not harder”?

Well, what if there was a way to translate this idea into your memory improvement efforts?

Sure, there are a lot of apps and learning systems that promise big results.

In reality,  most fall flat as tools and memory aids. But there is something potentially revolutionary in the memory software world that I want you, the Magnetic Memory Method Community, to know about.

Today’s guest, Matthew Snow is the creator of the app, MemoryFiler.

A former Army serviceman, Matthew initially became interested in memory techniques as a way to better himself personally.

Using mnemonics eventually grew to Matthew’s desire to help others attain their memorization goals through using his fascinating Memory Palace Software. Here’s a demo:


Matthew’s Memory Palace Software is highly personal, and isn’t a hack or a shortcut.

Far from it:

You’re still putting in the work, but it actually aids you in remembering your Magnetic Imagery. You do the encoding, and you make the associations. However, with this memory software, your images are at-the-ready for Recall Rehearsal as you work on committing them to memory to use in your work.

The Difference Between This Memory Palace Software And The Rest

That’s the difference between MemoryFiler and the flooded market. It takes your best efforts, your commitment, your encoding, and your imagery, and gives you a little boost, so that you can work smarter, not harder.

So if you’re looking for a way to maximize your imagery, and if you’re searching for a more high tech way to record that imagery instead of putting pen to paper – if flashcards simply aren’t a tool in your personal toolbox, listen up.

Simply press play using the audioplayer at the top of this page to discover:

  • How Matthew’s military experience was helped by the Memory Palace technique, and what servicemen and women really need to know for a promotion
  • The secret to getting “unstuck” with visual imagery used in memory techniques
  • What traits are necessary for success in entrepreneurship (and how consistency and routine relates to memory training routines)
  • Strengths and weakness of kinesthetic and visual learning styles
  • The benefit to reducing cognitive load through the use of apps, and why you shouldn’t “beat yourself up” over using them
  • Why social media is really asocial media, and why this is a metaphor for other “memory games” on the market
  • The need for analog and digital to work in tandem, and why we can’t “throw the baby out with the bathwater” when it comes to choosing one over the other
  • The reality of the generational gap between Generation X and Generation Z, and the influence the digital age has had on these groups
  • An explanation of dual-path readership and its development in modern culture
  • Why you should be concerned with media sovereignty
  • The real way to improve focus and concentration
  • The reason pop culture junk may be more useful than you think for memory work (Hint: It has to do with semantic memory)
  • Warning signs and indicators you’re dealing with the “pain of disconnect”

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Matthew’s App, MemoryFiler

MemoryFiler on Facebook

How To Find Mnemonic Imagery ANYWHERE (MMM Blog)

3 POWERFUL Elaborative Encoding Memory Exercises (MMM Blog)

4 Powerful Ways to Use the Pegword Method [10 Examples Included] (MMM Blog)

3 Blazing Fast Ways To Increase Memory Retention (MMM Blog)

The post Memory Palace Software: Matthew Snow on Using MemoryFiler appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Looking for Memory Palace software? Check out Matthew Snow's MemoryFiler. It promises to help you use the method of loci faster and better. Looking for Memory Palace software? Check out Matthew Snow's MemoryFiler. It promises to help you use the method of loci faster and better. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:02:27
Martin Faulks On The Memory Palace In The Masonic Tradition Tue, 01 Oct 2019 21:54:05 +0000 4 <p>Freemasons have long used the Memory Palace in a number of ways. Martin Faulks, author of A Mosaic Palace, shares his experience with memory and Masonry.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Martin Faulks On The Memory Palace In The Masonic Tradition</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Martin Faulks portrait for Magnetic Memory Method PodcastHave you ever thought about how improving your memory can improve your life? Not just surface level, daily routine improvements, but really transform who you are as a person? 

Did you even realize that memory training makes personal improvement possible?

Or do you limit memory improvement in your mind as merely a tool for remembering dentist appointments and names?

Well, here’s great news:

The art of memory goes far beyond showing up on time and not having to look down at name tags and desk plaques.

With practice, thorough memory training based on a scientifically sound application of the Memory Palace technique will radically transform you.

Not just your outward life and the things you do from day to day.

It will expand the limited notion of what you think your “self” to be.

This outcome isn’t just what the ancient gurus promised, but also the same kind of results respected neuroscientists like Sam Harris are actively promoting in our time.

How is this possible, you ask?

My guest today is memory expert Martin Faulks. He’s also an expert in the field of meditation.


Complimenting his mediation and memory training experiences, Martin’s a martial artist, yoga teacher, and author of over half a dozen books on subjects such as enlightened living and tai chi. His newest book, A Mosaic Palace: Freemasonry and the Art of Memory explores the link between the ancient tradition of memory techniques and the secretive fraternal organization, the Freemasons.

But Martin also takes on fun and unique memory challenges. For example, check out this interested memory demonstration:

You really can incorporate fun activities with personal self-development.

To that end, Martin and I explore memory as an internal transformative art that can change the very core of our being. Martin argues that while in antiquity inner transformation through memory was a common practice, too much of this tradition it has been lost in our modern age. The secret then to restoring this idea lies in your approach to committing to the techniques themselves with carefully chosen goals.

The best part?

It’s possible to have that transformation with a bit of guidance because the keys are already within you. What you seek is attainable, and it is within your means to take control of your own life.

Whether you suffer from anxiety, unhealthy coping mechanisms, constantly feel a sense of failure when it comes to interpersonal relationships, or you find yourself sabotaging your own success you can benefit from the advice Martin so freely gives in our conversation.

All you have to do is click play to learn about:

  • Memory training and the potential for learning leading to inner transformation (and how what you put into your consciousness can change who you are).
  • How the Renaissance caused the art of memory to become a path of cultivation of virtue instead of simply utilitarian
  • How Memory Palaces are useful as a form of meditation
  • The impact of adaptive strategies on our personality and coping and life skills
  • The hidden ways your mind is trying to help you
  • The method in which you learn something affects how easy it is for you to reference it
  • Why the church banned texts like the Ars Notoria as a “sorcery version of memory”
  • How the memory method of corporeal similitudes is the most powerful way to create associations for memory
  • The debate about whether Sherlock Holmes is a figure to look up to (otherwise known as a hero of an extra level of functioning) to when it comes to memory goals
  • Comparing and contrasting memory and sorcery, and memory palaces and magic circles
  • Why Giordano Bruno was a memory master and “terrible” teacher
  • The differences in the definition of a memory master according to various cultures

After listening to this interview, you might be wondering…

Should You Read A Mosaic Palace By Martin Faulks?

Martin Faulks portrait for Magnetic Memory Method Podcast

In my view, absolutely.

Anyone serious about the memory improvement tradition owes it to themselves to read as much about mnemonics as they can.

It’s not just about you, as you’ll discover today. It’s about everyone’s role in preserving knowledge for the good of the whole.

The number of ideas you discover when you focus on continuous study will impact your practice.

A Mosaic Palace provides historical insight and diagrams that you can translate into powerful Memory Palace training exercises.

For example, Martin’s book inspired me to rethink some of my previously held notions about how the method of loci was used in the past.

Few memory books combine history, philosophy and technique directed at self-realization. In a world cluttered by competition-based books, A Mosaic Palace is a breath of fresh air.

Plus, Martin has more exciting contributions coming. I also can’t wait to read The Hermetic Art of Memory by Alexander Dicsone.

The adventure never ends!

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Martin Faulks on YouTube

Martin’s official website

Scott Gosnell Talks about Giordano Bruno (MMM Blog)

How to Memorize Like Sherlock Holmes with a Mind Palace (MMM Blog)

How to Train Your Memory By Phil Chambers (Book review)

Memory Craft (Discussion with Lynne Kelly)

The post Martin Faulks On The Memory Palace In The Masonic Tradition appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Freemasons have long used the Memory Palace in a number of ways. Martin Faulks, author of A Mosaic Palace, shares his experience with memory and Masonry. Freemasons have long used the Memory Palace in a number of ways. Martin Faulks, author of A Mosaic Palace, shares his experience with memory and Masonry. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:07:30
3 Kinds of Neurobics for BETTER Memory Boosts And Brain Exercise Thu, 26 Sep 2019 03:00:02 +0000 2 <p>Neurobics prevent brain health issues and provide memory boosts. They're great brain exercise and here are 15 of them in 3 categories for you to try.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">3 Kinds of Neurobics for BETTER Memory Boosts And Brain Exercise</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Feature image of a young man with goggles and headphones to demonstrate 3 kinds of neurobic exerciseHave you done any cross fit training or heavy lifting with your brain lately? If not, you need neurobics.


Well, for one thing, this special form of mental exercise makes your ability to focus and concentrate a lot sharper.

On this page, I’ll show you what they are and how this special form of brain fitness can help your mental life thrive.

I’ve broken the kinds of neurobics into 3 categories and will share 15 kinds of exercises you can try.

Make sure to bookmark this page and come back to it often each time you want more ideas for getting the benefits of this most powerful form of brain fitness.

Neurobics Defined:
Memory Boosting Routines That Pack Small And Play Big

Neurobics are activities, or mental (cognitive) exercises that stimulate the brain, prevent memory loss, and improve memory recall. 

Just as physical exercise stimulates the muscles, so the muscle of the brain is stimulated with neurobic exercise. We all are familiar with the benefits of aerobic exercise to the heart and the lungs, but we often overlook the benefits of neurobics to strengthening of neurons and neuronal networks. The association here is so simple, and yet so often ignored.

In sum, neurobics comprehensively stimulate different areas of the brain.

Why A Fit Brain Is The Best Way To Preserve Memory

Neurobics, when practiced consistently, have the power to prevent memory loss.


Memory loss comes from atrophy of the brain. In the same way that bone density goes down and muscles shrink with no training, so the brain can become deteriorated with no stimulation. This is why neurobics are so important, not only for your memory goals now, but in the future, years to come.

Neurobics can also potentially improve memory recall.

That means regular mental fitness is the best line of defense and the best compliment to a memory training system.

While neurobics will not improve your memory in the same way as a laser-targeted, focused memory improvement practice, the element of discipline neurobics can bring are a perfect companion to tools like Memory Palace training techniques.

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

From Better Mood To Laser Sharp Focus:
Brain Benefits On Tap

Besides the benefits to your brain and memory, incorporating neurobic exercise into your life can improve your mood, focus, memory, and mindset.

Do you want to be in a better mood?

We all do, don’t we?

In fact, no one wants to dredge through their day, dreading the next one to come when their head hits the pillow at night. That’s no way to live, if you can even call that living.

Brain stimulation through neurobics creates blood flow. Because feelings and physiology are inextricably linked this circulatory response that accompanies neurobic exercise can trigger feelings of joy.

Neurobic exercises are based on the idea of focus, making a conscious effort to perform tasks that have been, essentially, automated by our brains. With this “focus on focus” with simple activities we can, therefore, improve that focus.

The Link Between Neurobics and Memory Exercise

Neurobics also have the potential to improve your overall memory.

By performing the exercises I want to share with you on this page, your memory will be strengthened. By simply making the conscious effort in, essentially, mundane tasks, your brain is engaged and primed for incorporating more formal memory training exercises.

Finally, neurobics can help with one of the greatest struggles in modern-day society: negative self-talk.

We have all been guilty of weaponizing our own thoughts against ourselves.

We have no energy because we are constantly beating ourselves down, but neurobics can help you escape from the negative framework that has you trapped. A shift in focus, from belittling yourself for no good reason, to congratulating yourself for a job well done is possible, all with some unassuming, but powerful, exercises.

And let’s face it:

When you feel better, you have a better mindset. It’s just that simple.

The 3 Major Categories Of Effective Neurobic Exercise

Neurobics often include some kind of physical component, an environmental component, and auditory component. You will interact with the world, creating neuroplasticity in your mind, with these three major categories of neurobic exercise:

Image of a parkour athlete to illustrate a concept related to physical neurobics

Category One: Physical Neurobic Exercise

Our brains are tailored towards efficiency, which is beneficial when we encounter a problem or new activity. We automatically problem solve, which is amazing, but these “same old, same old” routines do nothing for mental development.

1.Non-dominant hand exercises with writing

One of the most obvious examples of this shortcut in our brains is the concept of a dominant hand. Which hand do you unconsciously pick up a fork with? How about waving to a friend across a crowded room? The hand that you use for daily activities without even so much of a thought is considered to be your dominant hand.

In neurobics the most beneficial physical neurobic exercise is non-dominant hand development.

Just switch up your daily activities and use your “opposite” hand. This will bring a mindfulness and pause so that you must actually stop and think about the activity you are engaged in.

Start small with brushing your teeth with the opposite hand. This is just a small, almost minuscule change that can bring a different sensation to an obligatory, automatic morning routine.

For more of a challenge try to write with your non-dominant hand. I discovered I was a bit ambidextrous in this sense. Working as a professor it would bring me joy to, instead of physically moving to a new spot on the blackboard, to simply switch hands.

You can incorporate this technique into your memory journal as well. Try to do your gratitude journaling and general personal development goal-setting with your non-dominant hand, or try writing from right to left, instead of left to right.

Memory Journal Example from Joe Illustrating the Magnetic Memory Method Vision Statement Exercise

Don’t worry if it’s sloppy at first. With practice your penmanship will improve. Instead, really focus on the goal of giving different parts of your brain different exercise.

Plus, you can apply this kind of journaling to language learning as well.

This minor change can have major impact. You are increasing your focus on the content. Form and content will come together, and your focused attention makes you pay greater attention to what you’re doing, which gives it more meaning, more impact, and because you’re activating more of your brain, this makes your thoughts much more likely to be translated into action.

2. Non-dominant hand music exercises

If you are a musician, make changes in your playing. If you are a bass player and tend to play the higher tones with your left hand, try switching hands. At first you may want to simply cross your body, before moving onto something more complex. From here you can build your skills to eventually playing left-handed if you normally play right-handed with 10 to 15 minutes of consistent, daily practice.

3. Playing card non-dominant exercises

If music’s not your bag, perhaps cardistry or legerdemain. I practice both myself:


Everyone loves a good card trick that leaves the crowd wondering “Now how did he do that?”

To this end, I’ve trained myself to do magic tricks with my non-dominant hand and shuffles with my non-dominant hand. In standard practice think of mirrored tricks that take both hands to operate equally. You can build your skillset for dual handed tricks by using your non-dominant hand.

5. Neurobic exercises with your mouth

You can also use your tongue in neurobic exercise. Because “the tongue and lips are among the most sensitive parts of the body, even more sensitive than the fingertips,” the benefits to using these muscles in neurobics is paramount.

6. Ear Pinch Squats

Finally, try ear pinch squats. I know it sounds wild, but you are incorporating movement and function in several muscle groups, and we know this has palpable benefits.

Think back to the idea of cross training. Try crossing your arms, pinching your ears, then go into a squat. You can build this practice by upping your squat reps, or holding the squat longer, like a chair pose in yoga.

Image of New York City

Category Two: Environmental Neurobic Exercise

Move beyond your personal motor skills and take your practice to the world around you.

7. Eyes closed navigation exercise

Take a familiar, unobstructed area, and walk through it to a destination of your own choosing with your eyes closed. If you are in an apartment, step off the elevator, or out of the stairwell and walk down the hallway with your eyes closed.

8. The key exercise

You can increase the challenge with the eyes closed key exercise.

Everything, from getting out of the elevator, walking to your front door, getting out your keys, identifying the key that’s needed, putting the key into the keyhole, turning the key to unlock the door, opening the door, stepping inside, and closing the door, can, with, practice, be done with your eyes closed.

You’ll find your spatial recognition and your other senses will be in a heightened sense of awareness, all by removing sight from the equation.

9. Eyes closed showering

When you’re in the shower you are creating a diffuse in mental environment, really, without realizing it. This is why a lot of creative ideas come in the shower, due to your mind wandering.  

Maximize your focus and concentration by letting this natural mind wandering occur while showering at the best possible time of day, mornings. You can even try cold showering, breathing, chanting, and Wim Hof techniques in tandem with eyes closed showering for an even greater boost!

10. Eyes closed eating

Another exercise that is easy to incorporate multiple times a day is eyes closed eating. You will experience a different tactile sensation, experience, and different sounds.

Food may even taste different, better. We often do not focus on the act of eating itself as we are distracted by our environment.

With eyes closed eating you can appreciate what’s on your plate more by consciously separating the environment from your nourishment, separating outside noise from chewing and the sensations of eating in your body from the sensations of the environment, such as other diners walking past in a restaurant. You will be more in the moment, and therefore appreciate the act of eating more.

11. Take different routes

Finally, try changing your micro routes.

With minor changes en route to your destination you make your journey an experience. You will find, if you take notice, that you walk down the street the exact same way daily. What about just circling a mailbox for no other reason than to change the micro route?

Circle a street sign, clockwise one time and counterclockwise the next. Engage in your travel by injecting a bit of play into your routine. If you rely on public transit and are looking to expand this idea of course change, leave the house earlier and take a different route, or on Google Maps select the “avoid highways” option in traveling to your destination.

Image of an elephant with a human brain struck by lightning to express a concept related to neurobics

Category Three: Auditory Neurobic Exercise

12. Tracking individual instruments

Instrument tracking incorporates the sense of hearing, or active listening, into neurobics. Try listening to a song, only listening to one particular instrument throughout. Isolate one instrument and follow it through the song, or throughout a favorite album. The next play through follow the rhythm guitar if you were tuned into the bass, or the lead guitar if you were listening for the drums.

13. Reading exercises

Try reading either ultra-slow or ultra-fast out loud. You are incorporating the physical sensation of moving your mouth and tongue, exercising those muscles, but, at the same time, exercises your focus of hearing as you articulate the words audibly. You can even study auctioneers and their techniques for ultra-fast speech as auditory neurobics. 

14. Covering the beat

Try setting a metronome to a certain beats per minute and try to “cover” the click with clapping or snapping. Practice with setting the clicks farther apart, then closer, varying the speed as you build your rhythmic skills. This is beneficial not only to musicians, but anyone who wants to improve their auditory and motor focus.

This brain exercise can be hard to imagine, so please check out this video for a demonstration:


15. Breath counting

Finally, count breaths out loud.

This exercise requires no equipment, no outside stimulus, and can be done anywhere. T

ry either breathing, counting, one, breath, two, another breath, three, or audibly counting “one, two, three” as you are breathing.

Focused breathing, concentrating solely on your own breath, can transform not only these small, conscious moments, but your overall life, reducing anxiety, pain, and even muscle tension relief. Make the unconscious a conscious act.

Two Arrows to illustrate the next steps needed for people interested in neurobics

Your Next Steps

Start small with just one of the neurobic exercises and commit to putting it into action. Set a realistic goal for practice, whatever that looks like for you. Maybe “I’m gonna do this neurobic exercise every day for a week,” if that is an attainable, yet challenging goal for you. Whatever it is, commit, with intention.

Then, simply, execute to completion. If you say you will do the exercise for a week, for seven days actually do it.

Then pick another exercise and repeat. Try for a loftier goal, a longer time period of daily practice, or a shorter time period with multiple daily exercises. You know what is a challenge for you and what is right for your life. Find the benefits in changing up your routine and relish them. You’ll find this is the best motivation for continued practice.

To help those serious about ongoing mental fitness, I created the Brain Exercise Bootcamp. It includes 40 special brain exercises designed to do just that: help you continuously enjoy the benefits of regular mental fitness.

Brain Exercise Bootcamp

Consistency is important because these exercises changing your brain structure.

That’s what action does. You can’t see the world in a particular way if you’re not taking action. Your perspective can’t change. You can’t shine light into the darkness if you’re not moving.

And, for better or worse, you’ve got to keep moving.

Of course, I know uncertainty about what’s gonna happen can be horrible. But if you do a reality check, and just let go of the need to know what will happen, then you’re going to have much, much better results in life.

This is an important fact because you can’t know anyway. Even if someone could say “This is exactly what’s gonna happen. This is exactly when it’s gonna happen. This is exactly how it’s gonna happen,” it’s not true until it happens to you. And because you cannot know and will not know, what you need to do is you need to just take action anyway, no matter what happens.

Start small and be ready to grow. Just as athletes expands their litheness with cross training, you can take small steps and conscious effort to expand your focus, concentration, and improve your memory, and life. It takes just seconds to take that next step.

The post 3 Kinds of Neurobics for BETTER Memory Boosts And Brain Exercise appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Neurobics prevent brain health issues and provide memory boosts. They're great brain exercise and here are 15 of them in 3 categories for you to try. Neurobics prevent brain health issues and provide memory boosts. They're great brain exercise and here are 15 of them in 3 categories for you to try. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 30:57
How Mike McKinley Memorized 66 Psalms WITHOUT A Memory Palace Thu, 19 Sep 2019 02:18:00 +0000 2 <p>Struggling with the Memory Palace technique? Good news: Mike McKinley memorized 66 Psalms without one shares with you how he made it happen. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">How Mike McKinley Memorized 66 Psalms WITHOUT A Memory Palace</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Dresden sculpture of man with Bible for Memorizing Psalms without a Memory Palace podcastDo you struggle with the Memory Palace technique to complete large learning goals?

For example, have you always wanted to memorize a substantial body of scripture, but…

Kept putting it off?

I know, I know…

We all have something in our life that continuously gets pushed to the bottom of our never-ending to-do list…

We all say “I’ll eventually get around to it”…

We’re all guilty of never making moves to cross that item off our list.

And yet…

My guest for this podcast, Mike McKinley, has managed to AVOID that mistake when it came to making steps toward completing one MASSIVE goal.

Portrait of Mike McKinley

Mike is an alumni of the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass. He is also an electrical engineer and specialist in the area of radio frequencies.

On top of those duties, Mike is a husband, father, seminary graduate, and full-time employee. Using the memory techniques he’s learned from the MMM Masterclass, he completed a three-year seminary course and memorized 66 chapters of the Psalms (and counting)!

Image of a Latin Hymn Bible

So if you’re intimidated by the idea of undertaking an entire course to improve your memory…

If you feel as though you don’t have the time to commit in an already packed schedule…

Or you think, “How could I ever memorize something so lengthy?”…

Just click play on the button above now and learn from Mike all about:

  • Why information is easier to remember in story form
  • The reason early Christians memorized the scriptures
  • Why recitation is an important memory improvement exercise
  • How actors and memory students are one and the same
  • The way manufacturing “spoiled us” with uniformity
  • The importance of small memorization goals and practicing the loci method when taking on large learning projects
  • The role of visualization exercises in memorization 
  • The role of compounding or compressing in memorization 
  • A tip on how to “reuse” celebrities, like actors, multiple times as symbols in memory work
  • The way long-form memorization is like running a marathon
  • The reason dogma has no place in the world of memory training and why memory is a creative event

Of course, you might be thinking…

What if I Want To Memorize Scripture In Another Language?

No problem!

Check out this incredible success story from one of Mike’s fellow Magnetic Memory Method students:


Jeannie Koh Magnetic Memory Method Review for Bible Memorization


(For more success stories, please visit the Magnetic Memory Method review page.)

Like Jeannie, I also use a Memory Palace for memorizing scripture in other languages.

Here’s a demonstration and discussion of how I make it work with a Sanskrit text called Ribhu Gita:

What’s the secret to this memory method?


Take it one S.I.P. at a time:

Study memory techniques

Implement what you learn progressively so you improve your…

Practice (daily is best)

It really doesn’t get any easier than that, and the outcomes of having scripture in your mind and heart are profound.

Dive in!

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

How to Memorize Scripture And Verse Numbers In 5 Minutes Or Less (MMM Blog)

The Good, The Bad & The Wicked Charlatans of Vocabulary Memorization

3 POWERFUL Elaborative Encoding Memory Exercises (MMM Blog)

4 Powerful Ways to Use the Pegword Method [10 Examples Included] (MMM Blog)

12 Brain Exercises To Improve Memory (Step-By-Step Tutorial) (MMM Blog)

How Do You Choose What Bible Passages to Memorize?

The post How Mike McKinley Memorized 66 Psalms WITHOUT A Memory Palace appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Struggling with the Memory Palace technique? Good news: Mike McKinley memorized 66 Psalms without one shares with you how he made it happen. Struggling with the Memory Palace technique? Good news: Mike McKinley memorized 66 Psalms without one shares with you how he made it happen. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:02:48
Semantic Memory: An Example-Driven Definition And How To Improve It Thu, 12 Sep 2019 04:42:57 +0000 4 <p>What is semantic memory? It differs from episodic memory, short-term memory and other levels in key ways. This post explains all and helps you improve it.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Semantic Memory: An Example-Driven Definition And How To Improve It</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a Woman with Information Surrounding Her HeadDid you have toast and eggs for breakfast while reading the newspaper?

Well, even if the answer is no, check this out:

The fact that you know and recognize objects like toast, eggs, and newspaper (without being told each time) is the working of your semantic memory.

However, recalling that you had toast and eggs for breakfast yesterday is part of your episodic memory (more about that later).

In this post, I’ll explain what is semantic memory and why is it important, how is it formed and how can you improve it.

Here’s what I’ll cover:

  • What is Semantic Memory?
  • History of its Discovery
  • Is it Different from Episodic Memory?
  • A Brief Deep Dive into Types of Memory
  • Why Is Semantic Memory Important?
  • What Affects Semantic Memory?
  • How are Semantic Memories Formed?
  • How to Improve This Kind of Memory?
  • Higher Attentiveness = Improved Memory

What is Semantic Memory?

Semantic memory is the structured record of facts, ideas, meanings, and concepts about the world that we accumulate throughout our lives and our capacity to recollect this knowledge at will. It is part of your long-term memory. 

The breadth of information stored in the semantic memory can range from historical and scientific facts, details of public events, and mathematical equations to the knowledge that allows us to identify objects and understand the meaning of words.

For instance, understanding what the word “memory” means is part of your semantic memory.

Semantic memory is independent of the context of learning and personal experiences like how we felt at the time the event was experienced or situational properties like time and place of gaining the knowledge.

The level of consciousness associated with semantic memory is noetic because it is independent of context encoding and personal relevance. This was the finding of Endel Tulving in 1985.

For instance, you “know” that Mr. Darcy is a famous character from Pride and Prejudice, which is written by Jane Austen. 

You may have read the book, seen the movie or someone may have told you about this character and the author. How you acquired the knowledge and in which context is not essential. What is important is that your semantic memory stored that bit of information as general knowledge. 

You can now recall this bit of general knowledge whenever necessary independent of personal experience and of the space or time context in which it was acquired. That is the beauty of your semantic memory.

Usually, the recall semantic memory is automatic when particular information is prompted. However, there might be cases where you have to really think hard about certain facts stored in your semantic memory. 

Here are a few use examples of semantic memory:

  • Naming the state and capital city of your country correctly.
  • Knowing that trees give oxygen or fish swim in water .
  • Remembering your favorite drink or food or color.
  • Being able to understand what the other person is saying.
  • Knowing what the words you read mean.
Giordano Bruno Statue of Mnemonist and Memory Palace Innovator With Anthony Metivier

The fact that this is a statue of Bruno in Rome is a semantic memory. My personal recollection of visiting it is an episodic memory.

History of Semantic Memory

Canadian experimental psychologist and cognitive neuroscientist Endel Tulving introduced the idea of semantic memory as a distinct memory system in 1972. 

Portrait of Memory Expert Endel Tulving

Memory Expert Endel Tulving

Before Tulving, there had not been many in-depth studies or research in the area of human memory.

Tulving outlines these memory types in his book Elements of Episodic Memory. He notes that semantic and episodic differ in how they operate and the types of information they process.

Here’s Tulving’s definition:

Semantic memory is the memory necessary for the use of language. It is a mental thesaurus, organized knowledge a person possesses about words and other verbal symbols…

(Episodic and semantic memory, Tulving E & Donaldson W, Organization of Memory, 1972,  New York: Academic Press)

Cover of Elements of Episodic Memory by Endel Tulving

After Tulving, two other experiments noting the differences between episodic and semantic memories were conducted by Kihlstrom (1980) and Jacoby/Dallas (1981). 

The study by Jacoby and Dallas was the first to note that implicit memory does not rely on depth of processing as explicit memory does. (Jacoby LL, Dallas M. On the relationship between autobiographical memory and perceptual learning. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. 1981)

J.F. Kihlstrom’s study showed that a suggestion for posthypnotic amnesia produced impairments on episodic but not semantic memory tasks. (Kihlstrom, J. F. (1980). Posthypnotic amnesia for recently learned material: Interactions with “episodic” and “semantic” memory. Cognitive Psychology, 12(2), 227-251.)

These experiments paved the way for further investigation into semantic memory. 

However, it is only in the last 15 years where interest in semantic memory has greatly increased.

One of the reasons for this newfound interest is an improvement in neuroimaging methods like functional magnetic resonance imaging. These neuroimaging methods reveal that the brain does not have one specific region dedicated to semantic information. Semantic memory is organized throughout the brain.

It is now also known that semantic memory can be divided into separate visual categories such as size, color, and motion. Since specific parts of the brain are responsible for the retrieval of specific semantic memories, semantic memory can be divided into categories.

For instance, the parietal cortex retrieves semantic memories of size while the temporal cortex retrieves memories of color. (, Feb 2, 2011, Semantic Memory) 

Is it Different from Episodic Memory?


Both semantic and episodic memories are part of your long-term memory and are known as declarative memory or explicit memory (memories that can be explained and declared). 

However, while an episodic memory involves the conscious recollection of specific events and experiences; semantic memory refers to the mere recollection of nuggets of factual knowledge collected since childhood. 

Image of clocks to illustrate concepts related to episodic memory and semantic memory


Let me simplify it for you.

Episodic memory allows us to consciously recollect past experiences (Tulving, 2002), while semantic memories are devoid of information about personal experience. 

For example, to be able to recall what happened during the last football game that you attended is an episodic memory. However, “knowing” that football is a sport without ever watching a game is a semantic memory. 

Here’s another example:

When you say “summers in India are hot,” you are drawing that knowledge from your semantic memory.

But when you remember walking down the streets of Delhi on a summer afternoon, licking ice cream, you are drawing on episodic memory

A Brief Deep Dive Into Types of Memory

We cannot comprehend the entire concept of semantic memory without knowing a bit about the brain and different types of memory.

Brain scan of strong memory to illustrate how memory improvement and the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass helps learners

Our brain has three major components: the cerebrum, the cerebellum, and the brain stem. The cerebrum – responsible for our memory, speech, the senses, and emotional response – is covered by the cerebral cortex (a sheet of neural tissue).

About 90% of our brain’s neurons are located in the cerebral cortex. This cortex is divided into four main regions or lobes –  frontal lobe, parietal lobe, temporal lobe, and occipital lobe.  

Now, the part of the frontal lobe that plays an integral part in processing short-term memories and retaining long-term memories is known as the prefrontal cortex.

When we generally talk of “memory,” it is long-term memory.

However, there are two other memory processes – short-term memory (also called working memory) and sensory memory (it retains sensory information after the original stimuli have ended). These must be worked through before a lasting long-term memory can form. 

This model of memory works as a sequence of three stages from sensory to short-term to long-term memory and is known as the Atkinson-Shiffrin model after Richard Atkinson and Richard Shiffrin who developed it in 1968. It is the most popular model for studying memory systems.

Now long-term memory can be further divided into explicit (or declarative) memory and implicit (or procedural) memory. 

Declarative memory or explicit memory is the type of memory that deals with facts and events. It refers to memories that are consciously recalled. Procedural memory or implicit memory is the type of memory that deals with how to do things – like riding a bike or playing the piano. 

Here’s a fascinating fact:

The hippocampus, entorhinal cortex, and perirhinal cortex encode declarative memories. These are then consolidated and stored in the temporal cortex and other brain regions. Procedural memories, on the other hand, are encoded and stored in specific brain regions – cerebellum, putamen, caudate nucleus, and the motor cortex.

Image of two brains beaming with light

Declarative memory is further subdivided into semantic and episodic memories (now you know the context  of our brief deep dive into types of memory).

Another category of declarative memory known as the autobiographical memory, is similar to episodic memory in that both are personal memories from the past. However, while autobiographical memory is more general, for example, when you recall the street name of a house growing up, episodic memory is more specific to time.

Why Is Semantic Memory So Important?

We all need semantic memory to function smoothly in our daily lives. We use it every day to learn, retain, and retrieve new information. It is part of our cognition.

Children and teenagers use it to retain new information that they learn at home or in school, while adults need it to know the sequence of tasks necessary to do their job.

Without semantic memory, you wouldn’t know that the sky is blue or that birds can fly. Your concepts about time and space or meanings of emotions like love and hate are incorporated in your semantic memory.

Banksy image of Einstein spraypainting Retrain Your Brain

If your semantic memory is damaged due to any type of disease such as Alzheimer’s disease, you may not be able to identify or name everyday objects, understand the concepts of liberty or know what the word “coffee” means.

There are many benefits to strengthening your semantic memory.

A stronger semantic memory would result in improved long-term memory in students – enabling them to do better in studies.

More importantly, strengthening your semantic memory would enable you to perform better in all aspects of your life without taking vitamins for memory.

How are Semantic Memories Formed?

We all learn new facts, tasks, or concepts from our personal experiences. So, in general, a semantic type of memory is derived from the episodic type of memory.

For example, when you learn a new piece of information, your short-term memory relays it to episodic memory. Initially, you remember the exact time or place where you gathered the information. 

Memory Improvement course store image for the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass

However, over time a gradual transition from episodic to semantic memory takes place, where your association of a particular memory to a particular event or stimuli is reduced so that the information is then generalized in your working memory as semantic memory.

When it comes to the encoding process, both semantic and episodic memories have a similar process. 

However, semantic memory mainly activates the frontal cortex and temporal cortex, whereas episodic memory activity is concentrated in the hippocampus. The other areas of the brain involved in semantic memory use are the left inferior prefrontal cortex and the left posterior temporal area. 

Binaural Beats and Memory Improvement Magnetic Memory Method Podcast

Visual,  acoustic, and meaning are the three main types of encoding used to commit information to semantic memory. 

Individuals may encode information to semantic memory through pictures or reading words and numbers, by repeatedly hearing the information, or by connecting the information to something else that has meaning in the memory.

Different people have different learning styles. One person may do very well with visual aids. Another type of person may encode semantic memory through meaning or repetition. 

At the end of the day, there is no single route to semantic memory formation. But you can study better using mnemonics. Just make sure you don’t get into some of the issues we’ll discuss next.

What Affects Semantic Memory?

Some diseases and disorders may cause memory impairments in older adults

For instance, in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, there may be impairments or deficits in your short-term memory or working memory.

Kasper Bormans Memory Palace Alzhemier's

Kasper Bormans demonstrating what happens to a brain suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Notice the Memory Palace allusion.

However, as the disease progresses, patients experience more long-term memory loss and deficits, including erosion of episodic and semantic memory.

Patients with Alzheimer’s disease may have difficulty identifying objects or finding words to describe something. They may also suffer from impairments in their ability to recall significant events, such as weddings.

Other types of dementia can also affect short-term memory and long-term memory. For instance, a person with dementia of Alzheimer’s type can find it difficult to store information in the long-term memory, and also can have challenges with retrieval

Any damage to the medial temporal lobe that plays a critical role in acquiring and retrieving both semantic and episodic memories can also affect your semantic memory.

Studies have also been done on different effects that semantic dementia and herpes simplex virus encephalitis has on semantic memory (Lambon, Lowe, & Rogers, 2007). The study revealed that semantic dementia has a more generalized semantic impairment.

Brain scan to illustrate how memory techniques can light up the right side of the brain

Moreover, amnesic patients also have great difficulty in retaining episodic and semantic information.

Your semantic memory function also is extremely susceptible to cerebral aging and neurodegenerative diseases

A neuropsychological evaluation can reveal how your brain functions. Neuropsychologists use neuropsychological tests to characterize behavioral and cognitive changes resulting from disorders of the central nervous system or injury, like Parkinson’s disease or other movement disorders.

While you may not be able to protect your memory from all types of diseases, there are ways to improve your memory so that it doesn’t fall victim to age-related memory loss or dementia.

But don’t worry. As Nic Castle found, it’s possible to recover, even from ailments like PTSD.

How to Improve Semantic Memory?

Here are 3 simple ways to improve your semantic memory:

1. Magnetic Memory Method

The easiest and most powerful way to improve your semantic memory, as well as episodic memory, is by learning how to build Memory Palaces using the Magnetic Memory Method.

Magnetic Memory Method Logo

The Magnetic Memory Method Memory Palace approach is better for remembering and learning than something like mind mapping on its own.

It is an incredible combination of intelligence and memory strengthening tool. Combined with Recall Rehearsal, this holistic process lets you move information from short-term memory into long-term memory faster and with reliable permanence.

What’s more?

You can use all other memory methods inside of Memory Palace, however, you cannot use a Memory Palace inside other memory techniques. This unique approach maximizes the power of the loci method and combines nicely with the pegword method.

All that matters is that you don’t overthink the technique. We all learn it by doing it.

2. Exercise Your Brain

It is essential.

Exercising your brain regularly is the most effective strategy to improve memory and retention. 

Memory impairment or memory loss in older adults is common. However, there is a strong relationship between brain exercises and improved cognition and retrieval in older adults.

Brain Exercise Bootcamp

Numerous tools and exercises can help you to assess your memory and enhance it through games and training exercises. It is a known fact that the more you utilize your neural circuit, the stronger it will get. 

This fact can also be applied to numerous neural networks associated with contextual memory, auditory memory, visual memory, short-term memory, working memory, naming, and more. 

You can improve your skill of identifying the right word to use for a concept or an object by training the neural network in your brain accordingly.

Here’s a video that will inspire you to use memory techniques and treat them as the ultimate brain exercise

Brain Games [Memory Improvement Inspiration!]


3. Learn a New Language

When you learn a new language, it requires you to learn and expand new sentence structures, grammar rules, and vocabulary. 

Such activities ensure that your semantic memory is continuously being utilized and strengthened as you make progress with the new language. 

Here’s a video that helps you learn and memorize the vocabulary of any language.

Learn The Vocabulary of Any Language


Higher Attentiveness = Improved Memory

Your relationship with the world around you is dependent on your ability to learn and recall factual knowledge accurately. 

Being mindful of the things around you and paying attention when you come across new information is essential to creating long-term memories that can be recalled when necessary.

When you practice mindfulness in everyday activities, you are more attentive. Attentiveness, in turn, helps you encode information better in semantic memory.

Moreover, when you combine attentiveness with the Memory Palace method, your ability to retain and recall factual knowledge is stronger and faster.

If you are interested in the Memory Palace method, please don’t hesitate to get started. I want to help!

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Now then, time for a quick test of your semantic memory:

Can you recall the name of the character in the novel I mentioned near the start of this article? 

You could, if only you devoted yourself to more memory training. Ready to get started? 

The post Semantic Memory: An Example-Driven Definition And How To Improve It appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

What is semantic memory? It differs from episodic memory, short-term memory and other levels in key ways. This post explains all and helps you improve it. What is semantic memory? It differs from episodic memory, short-term memory and other levels in key ways. This post explains all and helps you improve it. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 44:53
How To Stop Overthinking The Memory Palace Technique Thu, 05 Sep 2019 07:36:59 +0000 4 <p>It breaks my heart when I see people overcomplicating the Memory Palace technique. The good news is that there are ways to get out of "analysis paralysis." Listen in and learn all about them.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">How To Stop Overthinking The Memory Palace Technique</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a man with a lightbulb head overthinkingAre you overthinking the Memory Palace technique?

If so, you’re interrupting your progress.

Worse, you’re delaying your ability to memorize information at lightning speed.

And no memory expert or memory champion wants that for you. That’s why we all keep working so hard for you to share in the miracle of life after you have the tools for memorizing anything.

On this page, I want to help you get out of the “analysis paralysis” problem.

If you take the right steps without getting caught in mental sand traps, I’m confident you can develop your first Memory Palace Network quickly and easily. If not, you risk having a skull that is still spinning its gears long after death, having missed out on so much fun and adventure.

Image of a skull with gears winding away to illustrate the problem of overthinking the Memory Palace technique

Ethical “scare tactics” aside, here’s another reason to read this page in full:

I want to help you escape overthinking in other areas too. Having the tools to feel that something is complex and do it anyway is important because too much thinking has been proven to carry many ill effects.

The truth:

Thinking is involved in using the Loci Method, no doubt about it. But thinking without overthinking is achievable, and today you’ll learn precisely how.

How To Defeat The Over-thinker By Becoming A Mnemonic Mechanic

The first problem with overthinking is how it slows you down.

For example, imagine walking into a business meeting.

You meet three potential investors. Learning their names, on the spot is pretty important, wouldn’t you say?

Well, if you want that ability, you don’t have the luxury of time to overthink the situation.

Feature Blog Image of a person with lots of ideas to illustrate overthinking the Memory Palace Technique

Instead, you need a system in place so you can deal with those three names, without thinking about the technique needed to memorize them. Everything should happen (almost) on autopilot. You just plug those names into your system and recall them effortlessly on demand.

To make this outcome possible, let’s start with a higher-order guiding metaphor:

Consider the mechanic and his toolbox.

A mechanic is so familiar with the contents of his toolbox that he knows exactly what he needs for each job. He knows which tool can perform which function and in which instance he would use each one. He just knows when he needs a 10mm socket or a flathead vs. a Philips screwdriver.

Memory techniques can be these tools in the toolbox of your mind. What’s the key to the mechanic’s innate knowing?

Two words:

Preparation and practice.

Prepare Your “Mental Lego” Before You Need It

The speed of making associations in your Memory Palaces comes from not having to think about the technique and how it works.

How is this possible?


The “thinking” part is already done before you need to use any of the tools. Your “in the moment” thinking is minimal. 

It’s just like being a mechanic who has the right tools in the toolbox so he can perform the job onsite without a passing thought.

So, what are the tools you need? If nothing else, I suggest you develop:

  • A Memory Palace Network
  • At least one alphabet list/celebrity list
  • The Major Method/Major System

Think of the Memory Palace as a foundational field. The “Magnetic Imagery” of your lists and systems are the “Mental Logo” that you plug into place.

For example, if you meet someone named Rose and you put Axel Rose on her shoulder, Rose is the Memory Palace and Axl Rose is the Mental Logo.

If you have Axl Rose doing something memorable using the Magnetic Modes, then he becomes a Magnetic Image.

When you have these three components ready to go and practiced, you’ll be prepared to perform, every time the need arises.

Let’s look further at each tool.

How To Master The Memory Palace

The Memory Palace, like a hammer, is the most basic of tools. Every toolbox has a hammer. Every memory technique arsenal has a Memory Palace Network.

What is this network?

26 Memory Palaces, one based on each letter of the alphabet. Would you like some videos and worksheets that walk you through how to develop this powerful system?

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Mastery of the technique seems to occur about halfway between creating all 26 and filling each with approximately 10 pieces of information each.

Anything less just isn’t leading you to the “Magnetic” effect I have in mind for you.

Skeptical about this techniques? No worries. Here’s the science behind why this memory technique works so well.

Enter The Alphabet List

Some people may call the alphabet list by another name, such a celebrity list, bestiary or “sun list.” No matter what you call it, the principle is generally the same.

An alphabet list is simple a list of figures that you’re able to draw upon that you have figured out in advance. It’s not unlike one of the four pegword systems out there. 

Your Memory Palace Network can help to generate your alphabet list. Here’s how:

If you have one Memory Palace with 26 Magnetic Stations, place one Magnetic Image on each station in alphabetical order.

Remember Axl Rose?

He’s a perfect ‘A’ figure for station one of this Memory Palace.

How about Bill Murray for ‘B’? Christian Bale for C?

(Now, I know what you might be thinking:

“Didn’t he just use Axl Rose for Rose? Is he an ‘A’ or an ‘R’?!?”

My friend, I’d be dumbing this down too much if I didn’t tell you the truth:

Every Magnetic Image with a first and last name can be both. Is that too hard to grasp? 

If so, I suggest you catch yourself, because it really isn’t that difficult. Every shoe lace is one shoe lace, but we still make two ears to tie a single bow, if you catch my drift.) 

Cartoon of a man overthinking making a simple PAO list

Go ahead and try this by simply writing out A-Z on a sheet of paper and filling in 26 celebrities.


Just get a pencil and some paper and make it happen.

Then, the next time you have to memorize something, look at the first letter of the information and use your “Magnetic Image” to help you.

A simple Alphabet List, Celebrity List or Bestiary

This simple Celebrity List took 2.5 minutes to create. In medieval times, mnemonists called this technique the “Bestiary” and would have used primarily animals that symbolized concepts with which they were deeply familiar.

For example, I memorized a Chinese word yesterday that had ‘Z’ for the first syllable and ‘G’ for the second. I saw Zorro playing Sega Genesis, guided by several of my lists.

Should you create several lists?

Yes! Having more than one list is essential if you want to become a human mnemonics dictionary (recommended).

But there’s a catch:

Although you want fixed references that you draw upon, you also want flexibility.

For example, I might meet someone name Rose, but perhaps Axl Rose won’t appear that day (for whatever reason).

For that reason, I’ll want to be able to spontaneously come up with another, equally powerful version option.


By practicing creating lists. That’s what makes it easy to come up with mnemonic examples spontaneously when something from your lists doesn’t appear.

Why The Major System Simplifies Everything
(Even If It Appears Difficult At First)

Let me be blunt:

Everyone needs a technique in place for number memorization.

Although the Dominic System is a strong option, I’ve always preferred the Major.

In case you’re not familiar with these terms, both help you transform numbers into sounds that you can turn into words. The grid you need to memorize is this:

Major System on the Magnetic Memory Method


Once you’ve got this in your mind, it takes just a bit of practice to spontaneously generate words for numbers.

For example, I might think of “chuck” when I need to remember the number 67.

However, remember the principle of preparation.

As with the alphabet list, it’s far better to have all of your possible characters ready in advance.

A list based on either the Major System or the Dominic System is often called a 00-99 list or a P.A.O. (Person, Action, Object.)

This is where you might think…

I thought you told me not to overcomplicate this process!

And you’d be right, which is why I suggest beginners focus only on the grid listed above in the beginning. I used it with no problems for a few years before assigning a character to each two-digit number combination.

It takes four minutes to memorize if you just notice a few things about each association:

  • D and T both have a single downstroke that looks like the digit 1.
  • N has two downstrokes, and Noah took the animals onto the ark in pairs.
  • M has three downstrokes, and looks like a mustache or McDonalds logo on its side.
  • R looks kind of like a rounded 4, but it’s facing the wrong direction.
  • L is exactly the shape you’ll see your left hand thumb and forefinger make if you hold it out in front of you.
  • Ships kind of look like the number 6 if they’re tipped on their side… especially if they’re hauling jars filled with chip.
  • K is kind of like two 7s lying on top of each other.
  • F and V are produced by making the same basic shape with your lips. Go “vroom” for a few minutes while thinking about a V8 engine.
  • B and P either contain or look pretty much like the number 9.

Don’t make it more complicated than this – because it isn’t.

Practice until you’ve got it down pat and then start listing your words. Here are some tips for that:

Next, practice memorizing real world numbers:

Go to the store and memorize the prices of the items you see.

Commit historical dates of movies to memory, or even the release dates of your favorite artist’s discography.

Whatever numbers are important and applicable to your life, make those your learning goal. Use these Memory Palace examples to help you understand how to store the imagery.


Practice Makes Progress

Once you have your tools in place, what next?


You must practice “snapping” your Mental Lego together. Your Magnetic Imagery has been doubled checked and organized. All the heavy lifting is done.

Image of a brain shining with radian light

But seriously, where do you start?

Here’s what I suggest:

Names are the most essential information on the planet.


Because every piece of information, every item, every action and every place is assigned a name.

Even better:

There are several low-pressure, low-stress memory exercises that let you practice name memorization.

Sheet music

Try this:

Go through your CDs at home, or your records, or your tapes, if you still have tapes, and then think “Do I know every member in this band?” If not, practice with these names in the comfort of your living room. 

If you like movies, you can work with movies.

For example, you can go through movie collection and think “Okay, what are the directors of these movies?” 

What’s important about these kinds of practices is they’re all low stress. You’re not going into a room and memorizing a bunch of names and only stressing yourself out.

But when you’re ready for the challenge, go into restaurants and memorize the names of staff members. If you make a mistake, don’t worry about. They’ll forget all about it and you can analyze what went wrong with your Magnetic Imagery and Memory Palace strategy. 

The Power Of Practicing With Vocabulary and Phrases

Once you have a firm grasp of names, you can practice vocabulary and phrases.

You can either search out a Random Name Generator on Google, or take the exercise analog with a real dictionary if you want to avoid digital amnesia.

Image of Scrabble letters saying Carpe Diem to express the need to take action now with memorizing vocabulary

For phrases, this is where a larger memorization project comes in. Is there a particular famous speech you want to memorize, a poem, or other text? Break the entire piece down, phrase by phrase, and apply your memorization tools to this exercise.

Why This Time Commitment Pays Huge Dividends

You might be asking, “How long should all of this take?”

It’s an okay question, but not the best one.

The reality is that only you hold the answer for how long memory mastery will take. After all, your definition of “good” may differ wildly from another person’s, depending on how laid back your practice is, or how many perfectionist tendencies you possess.

But let me be direct based on nearly a decade of teaching these skills:

On average, within two to five hours, most people have all of the tools we’ve talked about on this page covered.

Compared to other fields, this is only the amount of time it would take to:

  • Run a marathon.
  • Cook a stellar three course meal.
  • Assemble a dresser from Ikea.

Isn’t your memory worth this truly insignificant amount of time?

Sure, it’s a couple of hours. But that’s not a huge time commitment considering the lifelong value you get out of the tools.

Plus, the development of your systems is as important as the systems themselves. It really all comes down to finding a starting point.

The Secret To Just Getting Started

If you don’t know where to start, you need to come up with a learning goal. What is it you would like to achieve? What would you like to accomplish? If you can figure that out, then the starting point will become clear.

Here are some further tips on setting goals and crafting a Magnetic Vision Statement:

Take the time to set a proper course, and you will be rewarded with focus.

But don’t just settle for goals.

Build the systems that enable you to make steady progress towards accomplishing those goals. It’s about bringing vision and step-by-step planning together. Speaking of which, here are…

Your Next Steps

Once you have your starting point and the desire for creating your own systems, complete your first Memory Palace and Celebrity List. As we discussed, your Memory Palace will help you to memorize all the other tools. Consider developing these tools both the first and most important step.

With these tools in place your next step is to choose a meaningful learning project.

My suggestion:

Learn and practice these memory tools with something that will improve your life:

  • What will lead to a promotion at your job?
  • What doors will learning a new language open for you?
  • What skills can you learn that will truly transform your life?

In sum, you will learn way more by doing and reflecting, than just overthinking the process in advance.

Think of it this way:

If you are tasked with walking a mile, what is the only thing that causes you to travel that distance?

Putting one foot in front of the other.


Don’t stress yourself out over these techniques. 

And don’t let your need for “success” stop you from taking action.

Need a “guaranteed” outcome is the biggest flaw of overthinking. It’s the worst kind of overthinking and leads far too many people to a standstill. Overthinking leads paralysis analysis, which is like being caught by the dark side.

And that is something we should all use the “force” of memory to resist.

The post How To Stop Overthinking The Memory Palace Technique appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

It breaks my heart when I see people overcomplicating the Memory Palace technique. The good news is that there are ways to get out of "analysis paralysis." Listen in and learn all about them. It breaks my heart when I see people overcomplicating the Memory Palace technique. The good news is that there are ways to get out of "analysis paralysis." Listen in and learn all about them. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 32:32
Loci Method: 9 PRACTICAL Memory Palace Practice Tips Thu, 22 Aug 2019 07:58:02 +0000 12 <p>The loci method is easy to understand, but hard to practice consistently. These 9 PRACTICAL tips will help you accomplish your Memory Palace learning goals.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Loci Method: 9 PRACTICAL Memory Palace Practice Tips</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a glass ball magnifying a mansion to express a concept related to the loci methodAre you intimidated by the idea of building your own Memory Palace using the loci method?

After all, the word “palace” brings to mind an elaborate dwelling. 

It’s huge. 

And complicated, right?

It doesn’t have to be that way. 

Just think of the phrase “Memory Palace” or “Mind Palace” as a name that helps you cherish the knowledge you put into it. It’s not really about the place itself.

And the term “loci method” really just means that we’re turning space itself into a mnemonic device. I think of this memory tool as a “location-based mnemonic.”

Personally, whenever I get stuck on how to best use the technique, I mind map out as many method of loci examples as I can.

But on this page, I want to go further. 

I want to help you learn the loci method well and build your first Memory Palace Network in a way that is completely stress-free.

That’s why I’ve put together these nine practical tips that will help you practice the technique once you’ve learned it.

Let’s dive in.

#1: Learn To Use The Loci Method Simply

This means exactly what you think.

No clickbait here. Just keep it simple.

Don’t overcomplicate or overthink the Memory Palace technique.

It’s easy to overthink and analyze, of course. It’s in our nature, right? Well, we can still scrub it out. Here’s some help:


#2: Add Complexity As Your Skills Grow

Just because we want to keep things simple, doesn’t mean we’re going to stand still. 

Although you use of the method of loci should be simple in the beginning, naturally adding complexity as your skills grow is important.

For example, your first simple Memory Palace of your childhood bedroom can grow to include:

But before you expand, you’ve got to get good with just one Memory Palace.

Image of complex archicture to express how people use the method of loci in advanced ways too soon

That means starting with your existing competence. Don’t overcomplicate things.

With practice you will see that there are some places where simplicity will always rule and complexity is not desirable.

Ever heard of the phrase, “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should?”

That’s a great rule of thumb to keep in mind when using this memory method.

#3: Use Different Sized Journeys

Once you have grown your practice to where you have built several Memory Palaces, you’ll want to have a way of linking them together, right? This is where the Method of Loci, or journey method comes in. 

Consider this:

You’re planning a road trip to a big music festival several hours away.

You can take several routes to get there.

You want to get there as quickly as possible, to get your tent set up, your campsite secure, so you won’t miss any of the bands on the lineup. You’re not wasting any time between loading up your car and pulling up to the front gate. 

Then on the way back you need some time to decompress. You’ve spent four days in a field, listening to the biggest names in music from sun up to well past sundown. You’re not in a hurry to get back to the “real world.”

You take the scenic route home, stopping at greasy spoon diners and tourist traps along the way. You make a game of it by telling Google Maps to “avoid highways” even.

Both these routes got you from point A to point B (or B to A as the case may be) but they were significantly different. They had a different purpose. Think of your journeys linking your memory palaces in this same way. You have shorter and longer journeys, more complex and simpler journeys, all to serve you differently.

#4: Use White Space

“Less is more.”

While it can be useful to have very condensed Memory Palaces, and those memory palaces can be filled and overloaded with tons of stations, it can also be very beneficial to see what happens when you have less. Try working in a manner that’s spaced out, instead of overloaded.

Photo of an empty room with white walls

You can apply this idea to not only your Memory Palaces, but what you encode in them. Memorize less, encode less, and see if you’re able to have more recall from focusing on fewer pieces of information. 

The goal is to avoid the “Dr. Faust effect.”

The legend of Faust warns us against a downfall caused by a greed for all knowledge. He was unsatisfied with a mastery of law, logic, science and theology, and turned to the dark arts, where he eventually was damned after he sold his soul to Mephistopheles for more knowledge.

Instead of just collecting information, and never feeling satiated, why not be satisfied with the big ideas, and having an appreciation of the “white space”? You’ll find that your mind will fill in the blanks and you don’t need that overload of information. The white space will take care of itself. Let your Memory Palaces breathe.

#5: Complete Both Short Term And Long Term Projects

To keep your practice fresh, have both short and long term projects you are working towards.

A classic short term project is to have a daily run through of memorizing playing cards. Keep a deck handy (maybe beside your coffee pot in the morning, or near your reading nook) so you can shuffle and memorize a handful in your downtime.

For a longer term project, this may be learning a new language or memorizing a collection of poetry.

Toggling these two projects will keep you from becoming bored and burnt out with a singular goal. 

#6: Explore Indoor vs. Outdoor Memory Palace Options

As you move toggle between short and long term projects, explore using indoor and outdoor Memory Palaces for your memory journeys.

As an alternative to viewing your memory tools as simply one large Memory Palace, what if you thought of it as a collection of smaller memory palaces?

Kevin Richardson skydiving while wandering a Memory Palace

Okay, Kevin… Not that far outside!

For example, a home is a collection of room, a room a collection of areas and corners. A park can be seen as a playground area, hiking trail, community pool.

(Or you can skydive and wander your Memory Palaces like Kevin Richardson does while using Recall Rehearsal for learning Japanese with mnemonics.)

Be flexible and bring a sense of playfulness to creating your Memory Palaces. They will be far more beneficial as living and growing entities instead of a static, fixed creation.

For more on outdoor Memory Palaces, check out my discussion with Lynne Kelly on the craft of memory.

#7: Understand That Memory Palaces Are Pegs To Which You Can Add Pegs

Think of your Memory Palaces as pegs to which you can add pegs, or spaces to which you can add pegs.

When people first get started with memory techniques they may see these tools as mutually exclusive, instead of elements that can be used in partnership.

Yet, the Peg System works exactly how you would imagine, pegging or linking one thing to another. Building upon what you do know, you connect the new information to it in your mind. 

(No, peg system is not that different from the pegword method, but it’s worth exploring both.)

#8: Persist with S.I.P.

Now even though I’ve broken down mastery of the Method of Loci down to nine simple tips, it may not always be easy peasy. You will be faced with challenges along the way. There’s just no getting around it. Success with these methods is not about not having those setbacks, but that you know how to deal with them. 

And one of the best ways to deal with those challenges is to make sure you have a good library of memory training.

Use all of the information you have available to you. Utilize it constantly and consistently. Take S.I.P. to heart: 

S = Study the techniques for yourself consistently over time

I = Implement what you learn from you study of memory techniques and its tradition.

P = Practice these techniques with information that improves your life.

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Be ever vigilant in tweaking your practice and improving it. As Nicholas Castle found, this practice can release you from some big problems in life, as it did with his PTSD

#9: Keep A Memory Journal

Finally, keep a memory journal. It is crucial to have a place, a record of what you’re doing, how you’re doing it. Only then are you able to proceed and know where you’re going if you know where you’ve come from.

Although you could use something like Evernote for better memory journaling, I personally don’t see the attraction.

Instead, consider going back to “keep it simple.”

Anthony Metivier using the Freedom Journal

And if you’re feeling overwhelmed, just start with just one of the tips on this page.

See how implementing it improves the ease and speed of which you can create memory palaces and progress through the Method of Loci.

Mix and match these principles to maximize your efforts and you’ll see just how effortless the process can be with practice over time. Then move on to these more advanced Memory Palaces training exercises

The post Loci Method: 9 PRACTICAL Memory Palace Practice Tips appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

The loci method is easy to understand, but hard to practice consistently. These 9 PRACTICAL tips will help you accomplish your Memory Palace learning goals. The loci method is easy to understand, but hard to practice consistently. These 9 PRACTICAL tips will help you accomplish your Memory Palace learning goals. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 26:08
Scott Young On “Ultralearning” In Your Self-Directed Education Journey Fri, 16 Aug 2019 04:25:39 +0000 4 <p>Ultralearning by Scott Young shows you how to master hard skills at a greater pace. Learn how following simple rules can help you outsmart the competition. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Scott Young On “Ultralearning” In Your Self-Directed Education Journey</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Scott Young author of Ultralearning profile pic for Magnetic Memory Method PodcastYou’ve probably spent time in your educational career feeling frustrated, right?

You know the routine:

It’s the night before a test, and instead of resting…

You’re “cramming” to try to remember the things that didn’t quite stick during a lecture.

Here’s the thing.

It’s not your fault.

And there truly is a better way to learn.

No, it’s not sitting and listening to a professor, reading or copying from a textbook, conversing with a language learning partner, or mindlessly practicing yet another skill suggested by a learning “guru”.

To help explain what really works, my guest today on the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast is Scott Young, author of the new book, Ultralearning. 

Ultralearning by Scott Young Book Cover

In this book, Scott shares the stories of people like language learner Benny Lewis, Eric Barone, World Championships of Public Speaking finalist Tristan De Montebello, and the French Scrabble world champion Nigel Richards.

These are people just like you. The only difference is they’ve discovered a better way to learn, through “aggressive,” self-directed learning.

Today’s conversation with Scott not only explores the concept of “ultralearning,” but Scott shares his own efforts to learn more, better, and faster.

To be frank, a lot of involves simply directing your energy towards what works. Isn’t that better than spending years trying to fit into a traditional learning model that may not work for you?

So, if you’ve ever struggled to learn a new language through books alone…

If you’ve sat in a classroom only watching a professor demonstrate a chemistry experiment and not been able to “get it” because you lacked hands on experience…

If you’ve used trial and error to make the perfect recipe and still ended up with a soupy mess for pancakes or an overly salty roasted chicken…

Ultralearning can be the breakthrough you’re looking for to finally discover what really works for you to achieve you learning goals.

Press play now and learn all about:

  • The definition of ultralearning and the origin of the term
  • The difference between autodidacticism and ultralearning
  • Why self-education is not always the best choice for effective and efficient learning
  • The importance of being a skeptic while being a reader
  • Why we really don’t know what we’re truly capable of…we’re actually shortchanging ourselves
  • How ultralearning can be masochistic, yet beneficial
  • Why you should actually care about the act of learning
  • Why self-testing and feedback are necessary, even with self-directed learning
  • The role of free will in education
  • What meaningful progress looks like in achieving your learning goals
  • The difference between procedural and declarative memory
  • How and when mnemonics are useful 
  • Overcoming challenges with consistency in a learning practice
  • Contrasting the traditional work model and entrepreneurship (pros and cons of each)

When it comes to consistency in scheduling, Scott is also tremendously generous in sharing how he schedules his time. Check this out:

So you see?

It’s really not so hard.

Does Ultralearning Get My Thumbs Up?

Ultralearning by Scott Young Book Cover

You bet!

I’ve actually been reading Scott’s emails for a long time and even sought out his okay to hold this live stream walkthrough of a piece on his blog about critical thinking:

I hope he and I will have a chat to discuss the role of critical thinking in learning more in the future. But for now…

Don’t miss this book and make sure you follow Scott Young!

Further Resources on the Web, this podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Scott’s official website

Scott Young on Twitter

Scott’s Facebook page

Scott’s YouTube Channel

Scott’s interview with The Leefkoe Institute

21 Study Tips on

Brain Exercise Apps: Do They Help or Hinder Cognitive Development?

The post Scott Young On “Ultralearning” In Your Self-Directed Education Journey appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Ultralearning by Scott Young shows you how to master hard skills at a greater pace. Learn how following simple rules can help you outsmart the competition. Ultralearning by Scott Young shows you how to master hard skills at a greater pace. Learn how following simple rules can help you outsmart the competition. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:28:28
Memory Craft: Lynne Kelly On The Potent Power Of Ancient Mnemonics Thu, 08 Aug 2019 04:44:51 +0000 2 <p>Lynne Kelly joins the podcast to discuss her new book Memory Craft. We discuss the Memory Palace technique, her bestiary, rapscallions and much, much more. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Memory Craft: Lynne Kelly On The Potent Power Of Ancient Mnemonics</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Cover of Memory Craft by Lynne KellyIt only took three pages for Memory Craft to become my favorite book on the art of memory.


The answer is simple:

Lynne Kelly, the author of Memory Craft, is devoted to helping people memorize information that matters.

And in a world cramped with endless memory improvement books devoted to directing memory skills at insignificant trivia, Memory Craft is a breath of fresh air.

Here’s why:

Memory Craft concentrates on learning facts, languages and processes real people can use in every day life (like using the multiplication table directly from memory). She also addresses memory science and how these techniques can be used by young people.

Now, you may remember Lynne Kelly from a previous interview where we discussed her fantastic book, The Memory Code.

I’m thrilled to have her return to The Magnetic Memory Method Podcast to talk about her newest release. The full title is: Memory Craft: Improve Your Memory Using the Most Powerful Methods From Around the World.

For those of you not familiar with Lynne, here’s the lowdown:

Not only is Lynne Kelly the author of several books on memory, but she is a highly skilled researcher, science educator, author and memory competitor.

Lynny Kelly portrait with a cover of Memory Craft

Most known for her theory about Stonehenge’s purpose, she has also contributed to work in popular science and is a promoter of skepticism.

Lynne’s critical thinking and contributions to such a wide range of science subjects has led to awards from the Royal Zoological Society of South Wales among others. As a memory expert, Lynne Kelly is that rare practitioner who takes on large learning projects and shares the journey in addition to attending memory sport activities.

And that’s what makes today’s conversation with Lynne so special. Lynne helps us explore our need as a species to treat our minds as “muscles” that deserve ongoing development, ideally through a combination of learning and play.

Using tested memory techniques for completing fun and engaging memorization tasks, Lynne traces the timeline of the important role these skills have placed from ancient times to today’s memory competitors.

As a unique book on accelerated learning techniques, you’ll discover visual alphabets, medieval bestiaries, indigenous learning systems, and modern card memorization as Lynne has explored and updated them for citizens of the modern world.

If you want to learn a foreign language, you need to memorize and deliver a speech, or you’re a student preparing for an exam Lynne has a solution for your memory dilemma. The best part?

Lynne’s suggestions for incorporating mental exercise into your daily routines work even if you only have 5 minutes a day.

Intrigued? Press play above and you’ll discover:

* The real reason why stores play such upbeat, catchy music.

* Why outdoor Memory Palaces can be so helpful for memory retention.

* The benefits of “setting aside” time for memory training versus incorporating practice into everyday life.

* How vivid, violent, or vulgar imagery can bring abstract concepts to life.

* Why “rapscallions” are useful memory tools and not just mischievous little creatures.

* How art can help you remember more in a Memory Palace.

* The pros and cons to living with aphantasia.

* The key to using hooks and layering to create dynamic visuals.

Lynne Kelly holding a copy of her book Memory Craft* How to “dialogue” with your memory aids.

* Why we should encode using music and places for maximum mental skill (and possible mental health) benefits.

* The usefulness of memory techniques for school aged children and their long-term effects.

* The secret to overcoming “ghosting” when using memory techniques.

Further Resources on the Web, This Podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Lynne Kelly (The Memory Whisperer)

Lynne Kelly on Twitter

Lynne Kelly’s TEDxMelbourne Talk

Lynne Kelly on Amazon

The post Memory Craft: Lynne Kelly On The Potent Power Of Ancient Mnemonics appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Lynne Kelly joins the podcast to discuss her new book Memory Craft. We discuss the Memory Palace technique, her bestiary, rapscallions and much, much more. Lynne Kelly joins the podcast to discuss her new book Memory Craft. We discuss the Memory Palace technique, her bestiary, rapscallions and much, much more. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 54:18
9 Awesome Accelerated Learning Techniques [Beyond Mnemonics] Thu, 01 Aug 2019 06:38:36 +0000 6 <p>Accelerated learning techniques are a dime a dozen. But there are two problems common to all of them. Listen now as we weed 'em out and focus only on the best from the highest possible level. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">9 Awesome Accelerated Learning Techniques [Beyond Mnemonics]</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a clock for accelerated learning techniques blog postDo accelerated learning techniques really speed up learning?

Well, if you’re looking for ways to maximize your study sessions and get the most “bang for your buck,” here’s the real deal:

Most of the shortcuts people associate with “speed learning” and “speed reading” actually make things longer and harder.

That’s right:

Speed reading is not a shortcut!

(This is because most people can neither comprehend nor remember when they’re skimming like a maniac.)

But if you want a collection of techniques that will truly accelerate your learning process and help you master your discipline in a shorter amount of time, then it really does need to be just that:

A collection.

And to be clear:

Learning “faster” isn’t always about efficiency.

In fact, the fantasy of efficiency throws up one of the biggest barriers around. People waste time trying to master shortcuts that are never going to work.


Because they haven’t mastered the fundamentals that allow the learner to even understand the shortcuts, let alone effectively use them.

And that’s why we’re going to start this training by busting some of the myths around learning techniques that some self-proclaimed learning gurus (strangely) vilify:

  • Highlighting
  • Re-reading
  • Keyword notes

We’ll cover when and why these 3 techniques can actually be great, and then explore 6 of the classic accelerated learning techniques everyone should know.

What Makes A Learning Technique “Accelerated”

I don’t know about you, but I’ve personally found highlighting and re-reading to be very helpful.

But there is definitely a right and a wrong way to perform these strategies. 

In fact, they are deeply problematic if you don’t take into account what matters:

Context and strategy.

(Especially with respect to effective note taking techniques.)

Whenever evaluating a learning technique, ask yourself important questions like, “What context am I in?” and “Does this apply to what I’m learning?”

Take into account your desired outcome and the application of strategy in context.

Use A Mind Map And Vision Statement To Help

Literally map out what you want to achieve and see how relevant a learning strategy is to that goal. I suggest you use Tony Buzan’s Mind Map Mastery to help.

I also suggest you create a vision statement. Here’s how:

Then, analyze your results with the technique you implement into your study sessions. It literally requires some trial and error before you pass final judgment on what works in different contexts.

Finally, you must be willing to conduct experimentation to improve your results. Don’t be afraid of making mistakes while searching for what works best for you. There is no end all, be all when it comes to study techniques.

It doesn’t matter what others say. Highlighting can be useful in context, and I’ll explain why. Re-reading can be a great strategy for learning. Keyword notes can be extremely beneficial to achieve your desired outcome.

My advice? Don’t listen to the critics who dismiss these techniques so easily…instead let’s explore them a bit more in depth.

3 Bad Learning Techniques Made Good (In The Right Contexts)

Image of Bible with Sharpie to illustrate how sensible highlighting can be an accelerated learning technique

  1. Sensible Highlighting

Highlighting can be useful for names, dates, key terms, and definitions.

Why is it a useful technique?

Certainly not because it helps you concentrate better while reading a text. After all, no matter how much you refine the approach, you’re still stopping and starting the reading process.

Nonetheless, the benefit of highlighting’s usefulness is rooted in delayed benefits.

For example, when you return to the text you can rapidly flip through the pages and say:

“That’s information I need.”

You don’t get the results immediately, but in context, the benefits can be powerful.

Used in a sparse and targeted manner, highlighting is a great alternative to having to search for specific kinds of information.

What kinds of information? When I was in university, I used highlighting for creating “beacons” that helped me rapidly gather:

  • Names of people
  • Dates
  • Key terms and definitions

I identified them on the first read, and then circled back to pick them up for memorization later.

Color Coded Highlights?

Should you experiment with color coding your highlighting?

If it helps you rapidly distinguish names from dates, why not? I’ve personally never found pausing to change colors worth the time, but you might.

For me, I limit this technique to specific “seek and find” tasks. Highlighting in just one color – sparingly – is the best strategy when I don’t mind marking up my books.

Alternatives to Highlighting

There are alternatives to highlighting as well. These are tidier and a bit easier on the eyes than a sea of neon in your text.

For example, try something I’ve coined the Marginalia Dot, a simple dot in the margins.

The Marginalia Dot learning technique illustration

You can also use squares, circles, stars, or some other shape. These are much easier to scan and I find they work a lot better than brackets or underlining in a text. Their non-intrusive nature preserve the aesthetic value and readability of the book too. 

Even better, this technique introduces an element of memory exercise. Instead of “feeding” yourself the information you wanted to remember, the Marginalia Dot prompts you to remember.

The book’s content helps remind you, of course, but you’re not taking the simple way out. You’re forcing yourself to grow.

What do I do after laying out all these tiny dots? I use this textbook memorization technique with index cards.

In all cases, develop your own system so you can discover what works best for you. Only you can, so dive in!

  1. Re-Reading

I’m no stranger to re-reading a text, as you know.

Personally, I feel that re-reading is always a good idea after pre-reading and priming as well as after reading a book, and even after note gathering and memorization.

Now, I know that one of the reasons why re-reading is frowned upon is not because of the effectiveness of the technique itself.

It’s user error.

People have just not thought to budget and schedule the time for re-reading. The key is to set aside the time, instead of blaming time for being what it is.

  1. Keyword Notes

While the precise definition of “keyword notes” varies from person to person, it generally just means boiling bigger ideas down into individual words that help us unlock the larger concept.

For example, on this mind map, I boiled down an entire concept related to practice down to just that keyword, even though multiple ideas were involved.

Not madness like this early mind map I created (though this approach was not entirely for nothing):

Anthony Metivier Mind Map For A Book Without Tony Buzan Mind Map Mastery Tips

A problem that many learners face is that they just don’t know what keywords they should use to unlock the larger concepts.

The best way to gain clarity? Ask.

Ask your professor, ask other students, or even the department secretary. Ask for copies of previous exams, or explore related texts by using indexes, bibliographies and online search tools suggested by librarians.

You must become a bit of a self-directed detective. Learn to ask the “right” questions by just getting started with asking them.

Also, here’s a next-level mindset tip: Let go of the idea that you could ever know everything there is to know. We are all constantly learning. We are lifetime learners, constantly searching out “keywords.” Accept this fact and enjoy the ride.

What Makes The “Good Accelerated Learning Techniques” Coming Up So Good?…

If highlighting, re-reading, and keyword notes are bad, what makes an accelerated learning technique good?

The same things that make the bad, bad! (Mind-blowing, I know.)

Remember, it’s not so much about the techniques, as it is the strategic deployment of the right technique in the right context.

When it comes to the classic accelerated learning techniques, let’s explore more of the details that will help you choose based on the learning situations you find yourself in.

  1. Self-Explanation

There are many ways to practice self-explanation, such as the Feynman technique:

Another method is to perform regular progress checks. Here’s how:

Record and analyze your progress. You don’t have to be hard on yourself if you don’t see a rapid improvement or something you believe is measurable, but really invest the time to explore where you are at with your learning journey.

For related tips like these, please see:

How to Create An UNSHAKABLE Memory Palace Training Routine

Take Practice Tests

Whether they be in textbooks, online, or are previous tests from your department of study, there are practice tests widely available for you to utilize if you seek them out.

Once you take the time to find “where you’re at,” and know what needs improvement in your knowledge base, fill in the gaps with some “brute force learning.”

Although this accelerated learning term sounds like cramming, it isn’t.

Instead, putting on a timer and gobbling up as much related information as you can helps foster better understanding. It’s a powerful alternative to saying “I don’t understand.”

Instead, you tell yourself “I’m going to understand this. This is not something that I get right now, but I’m going to write out what it is I don’t get, and then I’m going to craft a plan that helps me seal the gaps.”

In this way, you are taking charge of your education through self-explanation and a little tough love. So the next time you get hung up on something, journal the nature of the problem and then write out the most likely way to solve it.

Like this:

“I don’t understand this concept about nuclear fission. My book defines it as ______________. What I don’t understand specifically is _____________. To help myself understand, I’m going to search the key terms on Wikipedia, YouTube and try to find a few blog posts from experts on Google.”

Isn’t a small bit of time spent in self-explanation better than giving up?

  1. Elaboration

Elaboration is a mental process where you repeatedly ask yourself the classic questions of “Who, what, where, when, why, and how?”

Instead of just reading a text, this approach allows you to dig into it contextually. It’s essentially a means of manually injecting curiosity into your learning process.

Image of a tangled set of electrical wires on a pole

For example, when dealing with mathematical formulas (for example) you can ask:

  • Who came up with this?
  • What were they doing with it?
  • When did they come up with it?
  • Where were they when they came up with it?
  • Why did they come up with it?
  • How exactly did they come up with it?

Really engage in the mental process of doing more than reading, but exploring, through questioning, the context.

Historical context can be very important!

The more you look at historical contexts, the more you’re able to compound a variety of levels of information. This act is itself a memory aid because you create more mental connections while doing it.

You’ll also want to use tools of comparison and contrast. Compare things historically, geographically, and geo-historically.

The possibilities are infinite. Use the power of combining multiple levels with these simple questions to your advantage.

The Power Of Consequences

Finally, take into consideration consequences of things which are always important to know.

For example, you can ask: “For those who understand the consequences of this knowledge, what happens for them as a result?”

Albeit conceptual, this is yet another layer of information that can deeply bolster your understanding and instantly make things more memorable.

At the end of the day it all comes down to getting granular with the text and diving deeper than a surface level of engagement so common amongst those who read passively.

Image of archery to illustrate a concept in using memory techniques to learn a language

  1. Proper Goal Setting

You must have a purpose and a why to what you’re doing. Too many times young people are pushed into making major life decisions at a very early age. Even if these people do become successful, they often wind up wearing golden handcuffs.

What exactly are golden handcuffs?

Golden handcuffs chain your life when you’re successful in completing goals, but you wind up miserable because you’ve led yourself into a career that is very different from what you wanted to do.

For example, how many highly successful doctors or lawyers had childhood dreams of becoming artists or musicians? What about the corporate executive who really wanted to be an author when he or she grew up?

At surface level they have it all figured out and should be happy. But we all know how it goes. In reality, so many people who seem successful are actually unfulfilled. And sometimes, accelerated learning techniques helped lead them into the maze that traps them.

How can this be avoided?

Easy: Proper goal setting.

Set goals that:

  • You can actually accomplish
  • You actually want the outcome of,
  • Help you grow
  • Give you options beyond the outcome so that you’re able to go in different directions after you’ve accomplished a certain level of goal.

Many people set goals that require smaller goals on the way to a larger goal, like stepping stones.

The smaller goals build up larger and larger until the ultimate goal is accomplished, one leading to the next.

Understand that even the smallest goal has to start somewhere. This should be based upon your existing competence. Proper goal setting takes into account an already established knowledge base, no matter how small.

Proper goal setting also is conscious of the Challenge-Frustration curve. You may find yourself bored as things get easier, as your goals are achieved, and, admittedly, that is a tortuous thing.

Experiment and find the balance of giving yourself sufficient challenge, but not so much that you are constantly frustrated and become burnt out.

Finally, take into consideration the 80/20 rule when goal setting.

  1. Remove or Manage Distractions

Easier said than done right?

After all, distractions can be internal or external. Oddly enough, it’s the internal distractions that are bigger, meaner, and nastier than anything from the outside world.

Brain Exercise apps illustration questioning the wisdom of installing brain games on your phone

Internal Distractions

Internal distractions are largely mental. The stories we tell ourselves, and the way we convince ourselves we’re not good enough, smart enough, or capable is grossly unfair.

Although such rotten mental content has no place in an intelligent mind, nonetheless, it’s there.

More crazy:

We reason and justify negativity so that we believe it’s logical and our truth. It’s a constant inner battle.

In my experience, meditation and taking care of diet and sleep are the best cure.

External Distractions

Distractions can also be external.

Take into consideration your learning environment. Is it too crowded? Too noisy? How is the lighting? Find out if a steady hum of people and bright lights is beneficial to your or a distraction.

Also, do you work better in a more dimly lit space with silence? Experiment with your study space to find what works best for you. Take steps to remove or reduce those environmental distractions to multiply your efforts.

  1. Multi-Sensory Learning

We’ve talked in great detail about the Big Five of Learning – reading, writing, listening, and speaking and their benefits to memorization and learning. By creating a multi-sensory experience, far more physical and mental connections are made.

When you use multi-sensory learning across multiple disciplines, the material becomes more naturally etched in your mind.

In addition to the Big Five explore the idea of distributed practice. Experiment with studying in short sessions, learning broken up into smaller bursts, over a long period of time.

Learn Faster By Changing Spots

Finally, try changing contexts or locations. The novelty of a new learning environment may be exactly what you need for retention.

Once you’ve found your ideal learning environment explore places with the same aesthetic.

Rotate between several cafes or area libraries. If you find yourself hitting a wall at a location, move to the next. You can even take the opportunity to walk between the places as a Memory Palace journey. Here’s how:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Yes, taking a break to walk between locations really can help you learn faster. It’s great for writing too (most of the articles on this blog were written while walking between cafes, as it happens.)

Tony Buzan with Anthony Metivier and Phil Chambers

Tony Buzan with Anthony Metivier and Phil Chambers

  1. Coaches and Mentors

Coaches and mentors are huge for accelerating your learning.

If you don’t have one, you should figure out how to get one.

Not only do you have the actual expertise of the person who’s gotten where you want to get, but they can see what you’re doing with a granular level of detail that someone who is not at that place that you want to get can never see.

We know there are benefits to a study group and discussion among peers, but a coach or a mentor is next level engagement. They can pick up the details of what you’re doing wrong, and what you’re doing right and give you advice, from personal experience, on how to improve.

If your discipline is so niche or you are unable, for any reason, to find a mentor, consider Tim Ferriss’s  idea of DiSSS.

D stands for deconstructing.

Look at top level experts or performers in your field. Analyze what they are doing right, or what works for them. What techniques have led to their success? What strategies have they utilized to excel at their craft?

Find and use the great ideas, but also use your critical thinking skills. What failures and setbacks have they had along their journey? Knowing their weaknesses and making note of their failures and missteps can help you to avoid those same mistakes.

(I has no representation. It is simply a placeholder vowel so the acronym can be spoken, therefore easily remembered.)

S is selection from similarity.

Selection involves meta learning or knowing how to learn. For example, if you have a goal of learning multiple languages, start with the second language where you started with the first.

If you are learning vocabulary and you began with household objects for your first language – bed, table, door, chair, etc., –  begin with this same vocabulary for the next language. Craft a modus operandi.

S stands for study. You have to put in the work. There’s no shortcut there. Studying is focused time and effort.

The final S represents stakes. Simply put, we’re talking about having skin in the game. Invest in yourself. Make sure you have the best possible training that you can get. If coaching and mentorship is an option for you (and even if it isn’t), make it happen.

Image of a man drinking from a straw with I love simplicity logo

Is Simplicity Actually Worth It?

There’s a trend out there these days that involves learning gurus urging people to seek out simplicity. After all, we naturally shy away from complication, and the sharks know how confirmation bias works. They’re singing exactly the tune most people want to hear.

Instead, I suggest that you ask yourself this difficult question:

“Should I simplify or look complexity in the eye?”

If you really want to experience accelerated learning, I challenge you to avoid the easy route. Stop simplifying things for simplification’s sake.

Learning doesn’t need to be simple, and the best science we have shows beyond a doubt that learning must be challenging in order for growth to take place.

Instead of simplifying information, make it manageable. Not easy, but manageable. In other words, deconstruct the steps involved, just as Tim Ferriss suggests.

Above all, remember to keep flexible. You may need to rework your plans, examine your goals for practicality’s sake, or raise the stakes. For many people, they’re goals actually aren’t lofty enough.

And just get started!

Once in motion, you’ll soon see that everything that once seemed tough looks very different on the other side.

I’m talking about the side of acceleration that you’ll be proud of.


Because it is real, earned and entirely your own through authentic experience.

The post 9 Awesome Accelerated Learning Techniques [Beyond Mnemonics] appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Accelerated learning techniques are a dime a dozen. But there are two problems common to all of them. Listen now as we weed 'em out and focus only on the best from the highest possible level. Accelerated learning techniques are a dime a dozen. But there are two problems common to all of them. Listen now as we weed 'em out and focus only on the best from the highest possible level. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 42:17
How to Create An UNSHAKABLE Memory Palace Training Routine Thu, 18 Jul 2019 02:27:51 +0000 2 <p>It's easy to get overwhelmed when using memory techniques to achieve your learning goals. But if you create a Memory Palace training routine the right way, daily results fall into place. Learn how now. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">How to Create An UNSHAKABLE Memory Palace Training Routine</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Feature Image For How to Create An UNSHAKABLE Memory Palace Training RoutineIf you want to create an unshakable Memory Palace training routine, here’s the most important point:

Your memory exercise routine needs to be immovable from your schedule.

Like a mountain.

Think for a second about what mountains represent:

Mountains symbolize strength, and they dominate the landscape. Mountains endure extreme weather, erosion, and yet remain sturdy.

Now, you may not think of your mind as being as sturdy and consistent as a mountain.

But when it comes to establishing memory ability and the mental power consistent memory training can create in your life, this level of sturdiness is possible.

All it takes is self-discipline, the application of the right techniques, and an established routine you love to maintain.

Image of a mountain to express how sturdy habits can be

How do I know?

For one thing, I’ve recited the same passages from memory for nearly two and a half years (Ribhu Gita and Upadesa Saram).

For many years more, I’ve released podcasts, blog posts and videos with (almost) weekly consistency. Only a regular memory practice and personal discipline makes accomplishing such goals possible.

Along the way, I’ve interviewed and made friends with many of the best memory athletes and memory experts on the planet. They’ve inspired me on my mission to spread knowledge about memory techniques as far and wide as possible, and to keep up with memory training each and every day.

Here’s what I’ve learned about Memory Palace training routines along the way.

Image of a mind projecting a human growing up over time to express a concept related to mindset in memory training

How To Topple The Biggest Barriers To Consistent Memory Training

First things first, you must master your mindset.

This step will help you eliminate the pain people associate with training, and the flight mode the fear of pain places people in.

Listen, I know it’s easy to get overwhelmed when you’re building your first Memory Palace Network.

Heck, for some people, even the first Memory Palace can be a challenge.

That’s why I created this free course and separated it into smaller and simpler steps:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

But here’s the truth:

Even the simplest course in the smallest amount of steps will still challenge you.

Not only is challenge to be expected…

It’s normal! Authentic brain exercise that leads to better memory must be a challenge. Otherwise, you won’t grow.

This fact (one that all scientists and top performers acknowledge) means that challenges are never a reason to accept defeat.

Yet… I’ve heard the same complaint a thousand times:

“Oh this is so much work.” “How will I ever have time for this? What if it doesn’t work?”

Image of a hamster trapped in pain vs gain thinking

How To Escape The “Pain Vs. Gain” Hamster Wheel

Well, what if?

Mental mastery starts with giving up fear of the unknown.

Why is this so important?

Because life is – and always will be – filled with unknowns!

For example, I just started memorizing Chinese characters.

All of a sudden, my brain starts melting under questions for which there is no answer:

  • What if I spend time on characters I won’t use?
  • What if I don’t have enough Memory Palaces?
  • What if I give up?
  • What if, what if, what if…

The good news is:

I know how to shut these questions about the unknown off. And I can help you. Here’s how:

You need to separate your “pain thoughts” from your “gain thoughts.”

After all, the dread created by thoughts of “so much work” erases the promise of what you stand to gain.

Plus, you can get all kinds of interference, as memory scientists call it, just one of many causes of forgetting.

How To “Flip The Script”

Instead of focusing on the pain, flip the script. Ask instead:

“What if I actually had a fully functional Memory Palace Network and could memorize information quickly? AND not only memorize it, but have it at my fingertips, when I need it?”

Replace focus on the pain with a serious grasp on the outcomes, the benefits, and the goals needed to help you create your first Memory Palace Network. Then create the simple systems that will help you achieve those goals.

Want proof that the Memory Palace technique works? This memory science makes it undeniable! All you need to bring is the practice. The tips below will help. Keep reading!

Image of a fist of ice and a fist of fire to illustrate the fight vs flight problem in memory palace training

Fight Vs. Flight:
How to Raise The Fists Of Your Memory And Keep Punching

Are “fight” or “flight” behaviors typical for you?

If you’re not sure, think about the last time you faced a really big challenge.

Did you dive in, or did you sit still and further cement your status as a “couch potato?” through more inactivity? (Let me know in the comments below if you wish.)

Now think about creating that Memory Palace Network (here are some varying examples of this memory technique to help you).

Do you see it as a challenge you can rise to or something to run from?

If you’re running from it, see if you can’t craft a different story for yourself. See yourself diving into battle without fear, for example.

Such a simple shift in mindset really can enable you to make it happen instead of throwing your hands up in the air, admitting defeat and hiding your head in the sand.

You really can harness those runaway, unhealthy, defeatist thoughts. You just need to step back from your ego a bit and objectively view the nature of your thoughts. Or use this simple tip:

Contrary to popular belief, this form of self-inquiry like this does not lead to paralysis analysis.

Instead, an honest analysis of how your mind creates fears and endless self-doubt really can help you take action. You really can start to understand that the barriers you face are really just thoughts in your mind. Walking meditation can help if you don’t like asking and answering these kinds of questions while sitting still.

In all cases, you must take action in order to fully understand how memory techniques work.

Put it this way:

How would you know that you can’t lift Thor’s hammer until that you’ve actually had the handle in your grip?

This is where having a proper mindset separates the wheat from the chaff.

You must have an “all-in” attitude. You’ve got to go for it with laser-focused intent.

The only question is… how do you develop the mindset that allows you to leave your fear and overwhelm about such a “big task” behind?

Image of an arrow hitting the bullseye to illustrate the need to find your why

Use The World’s Most Powerful Cliché And Find Your “Why”

“Know your why” is a cliché, to be sure.

But it works for a reason, and not just because it’s identifiable and relatable.

Thinking about your why causes you to take a long, hard look at your reason behind doing anything, much deeper than surface level reasons like looking smarter or getting a raise.

For this reason, every time we think about our Memory Palace training routines, we will do very well to revisit our why.

How To Dig Into Your Why

Ask yourself “What do I really need these techniques for?”

It is to become a memory champion? To pass exams? To learn languages?

Is it that you want to be able to deal with a large volume of information, or are you more concerned with the speed at which you’re learning and retaining information?

Next, dig deeper.

I recommend that you look for at least five levels of why.

These reasons do not necessarily have to be in a hierarchy of importance. It’s just important that you have enough fuel to draw upon when times get tough or other priorities start to compete with your memory training schedule.

Example of Five Levels Of Why

For example, here are my five levels:

  • To grow the garden of my knowledge through multiple layers of connection
  • To deepen my understanding of how world history and philosophy connect
  • To correct errors where they exist and increase factual accuracy
  • To increase cultural understanding and communication through ongoing language learning
  • To maintain brain health through continual brain exercise

You might struggle at first to reach five reasons. Keep practicing and you’ll get there.

Image of a unique bucket list on a chalkboard

The Bucket List Technique

Another way to find your why involves creating a “bucket list.”

Think of the things you would really like to do, and then ask yourself “Why would you like to do them?”

Then ask yourself “Why else?” and repeat.

If you can’t figure out five reasons, or five whys, why you want to do a thing… what are you even bothering wanting to do it for? Do you really want it after all?

This high level “why” will help you not to waste time on training for things you don’t actually want to do, because your training will fall apart if you don’t actually want the goal you set out for.

Do you have to stop at five?

Of course not.

But when you have at least five, you’ll discover it’s easy to complete the next, crucial step: Crafting a Vision Statement.

And as you can see from Joe’s email and extract from his Memory Journal after he watched the video above, this technique really works:

Memory Journal Example from Joe Illustrating the Magnetic Memory Method Vision Statement Exercise

Vision Statement from Joe’s Memory Journal

“Hey professor 🙂

I just wanted to say thank you again for putting that vision statement video out. If you want to see what I ended up with for a vision statement, I attached it to this email. There’s 18 pages of work I had to go through to get it boiled down to this. It was exactly what I needed at the time I needed it.”

Thanks for sharing this part of your journey, Joe!

Now all you have to do is…

Link Your “Why” To Missions That Use Simple Systems

Wait a minute? Isn’t having a fully developed why enough?

In a word:


A why is only as good as the action-based systems to which you link it.

Put it this way:

The biggest problem I’ve found is that a lot of people create goals that are forced. They proceed toward creating outcomes they’re not entirely passionate about.

For example, their parents have the vision of them becoming a doctor or lawyer, when they’d rather write children’s books or become touring musicians.

No wonder they don’t have a why they can create systems and missions for! You really can’t get a clear understanding of your why when… it isn’t yours. I know this from my own experience, when I once tried completing a mission with no truth to it whatsoever (long story).

Condensed Memory Training System Example

Here’s an example of a daily system I currently use:

  • Wake up, drink water, stretch
  • Recite memorized Ribhu Gita, Upadesa Saram and Bhagavad Gita verses in Sanskrit
  • Memorize playing cards (a brief, but powerful eleborative encoding memory exercise)
  • Gratitude journal and then recall the memorized cards
  • Memorize more verses in Sanskrit

How is this linked to my five levels of why?

Very simple:

I spent years getting a PhD that involved understanding Western history and philosophy. As great as this mission was, I learned next to nothing about the Eastern traditions.

By studying a language and philosophical world of an Eastern tradition I grow connections between schools of thought in the garden of my mind. I deepen my understanding and develop greater factual accuracy. My cultural understanding develops and it all happens while fortifying my brain health through the combination of multiple memory exercises.

And in case you’re wondering about the playing cards, it is well known that a simple creative memory exercise helps prime the mind before taking on a harder task.

Plus, there are at least 13 reasons for memorizing playing cards. I thoroughly believe this memory activity is something everyone should do.

Image of a woman with many clocks to illustrate the theme of structuring your time

How To Structure Your Time

Obviously memory training takes place over time.  It is a process and if you want the full benefits of what memory training can do for you, your practice sessions will take place over a period of time.

Don’t say you’ll get to it when you “find the time.” Time isn’t something you stumble across. Time is something you structure. Structuring time is itself something you must practice, so the good news is that memory training lets you kill two birds with one stone.

How to get started?

It depends on your goal. For example, if you don’t yet have a Memory Palace Network, that should likely be your first goal so that you can practice effectively.

Here’s how:

Set aside the time to create one Memory Palace per day.

That’s it. That’s not that difficult is it?

It’s a goal that’s easily attainable for anyone, even someone just starting out. Squash those thoughts of overwhelm right off the bat using the tools discussed above.

Image of a boxer and boxing bag with a playing card to illustrate the need for a memory training routine

Commit to a routine and this will happen:

In less than a month you’ll have the minimum recommendation of Memory Palaces in place to serve you (and they will last for the rest of your life).

Two to five hours is all the Memory Palace Network takes for most people. You can knock it out over a weekend.

Once you have your Memory Palace Network in place, your mini-missions can evolve. You can incorporate card memorization, section off time to work on a larger project (like learning a foreign language), and practice encoding and Recall Rehearsal daily.  

For an extended example, here’s The Story of How to Learn and Memorize German Vocabulary.

For these larger goals, I suggest encoding five to ten pieces of information in each Memory Palace per day.

You can structure your time mentally, of course, but I would encourage you to save the mental space and journal.

I use tools like the Freedom Journal, Mastery Journal, and Snapshot Journal. They help with keeping track of time spent and progress towards goals. When you look back over your days, weeks and months, you can make comparisons to see just how far you’ve come by utilizing “captured” time in your journals.

Image of an ashamed knight who did not keep a Memory Journal

How To Track Your Memory Palace Training Results

The same methods for structuring time can also be used to help you track your results.

But first you might be wondering…

What does tracking results actually accomplish?

In a nutshell, tracking helps you:

  • Self-monitor and recognize when you’ve fallen off the wagon
  • Spot trends (both positive and negative)
  • Correct or improve negative trends (you’ll spot what isn’t working)
  • Harness the value of positive trends (you’ll spot what is working and improve it)
  • Produce solutions to training problems
  • Create positive feedback at a glance that keeps your morale high
  • Emphasize and ensure flexibility in your memory work

When you’re properly tracking your progress, you’ll never frustrate yourself when mistakes take place or you have a down day.

Instead of saying “Oh, this just isn’t working,” negative assessments will be replaced with, “That’s curious. What is it that I can do to improve this? What could I do to make a little change and experiment tomorrow?”

Then, track the adjustments you make, note your progress, and you’ll be amazed at how far you’ve come. This will create an endless supply of enthusiasm, and therefore motivation to keep that daily practice as priority.

Image of an electrician to illustrate a concept in memory training troubleshooting

How To Troubleshoot Memory Palace Training Problems

What about when mistakes happen, or you fall off the wagon?


Maybe you need to get some memory coaching.

There’s a continuing huge trend in the field of life coaching, and for good reason. Perhaps you’re surrounded by “yes men” in your everyday life, or just people who needlessly enable you.

Invest in someone who not only will listen to your B.S., but who will point out the nature of it. Seeing things through an objective lens will help you move forward, and move forward consistently.

It doesn’t have to be a memory expert. Just establish some accountability through real communication, not just surface level, but real, honest, communication.

What if You Miss Just One Day?

We all know life happens and we should, at this point, expect the unexpected, right? We can’t predict the when of when life will throw us a curveball, but we know, at some point, it’s coming. That’s no surprise. We can’t control it…

But what we can control is our reaction to the unexpected, when our daily routine is thrown off course, when we miss a day of practice. What happens then?

First we must accept it. Just accept that you missed a day and don’t beat yourself up over it. Don’t give up when a minor setback occurs.

Nicholas Castle used memory techniques to help him overcome PTSD. His story demonstrates how anyone can overcome setbacks of any kind. 

Revisit your why and review your mission often. If you get off track revise your mini-missions.

Most importantly, get back on the horse. It may be a real struggle at first, but if you train yourself you’ll develop that skill of resilience. Starting over again is itself something to practice.

It leads to resilience, which leads to strength.

Image of a person with a fidget spinner choosing to be distracted

How To Remove/Manage Distractions

I can’t believe how many people make light of their procrastination and how easily they get distracted.

It’s no joking matter.

You need to identify the aspects holding you back and them eliminate them.

Start with these questions and avenues for exploration:

Are your internal distractions more physical than mental?

If they are internal and psychological, look at your diet. Is it helping or causing harm?

How restful is a night’s sleep for you? Are you getting enough sleep?

Take a long look at how you are treating your physical body because it correlates directly to the results you can achieve mentally.

What about external distractions? Is your scheduled time really protected?

Take into consideration your learning area and the environment you need for you to learn best in. Also:

  • What time of day are you most productive?
  • What lighting do you need for your clearest focus?
  • What noise level is appropriate to your study routine?

All of these external factors can have a great impact on optimization of your scheduled time, for better or worse.

At the end of the day, you might just need to make your memory training activities more visible. For example, with your card memorization practice, keep a deck of cards in a prominent place. You’ll find it difficult to forget your commitment to memorizing them.

You don’t have to memorize a full deck, or make a huge time commitment of it.

Just stop on the way to the kitchen, or your way out the door to encode just five cards, one word, or whatever it is you’re memorizing. Make stopping and practicing a habit simply by repeating the behavior because it’s inescapable.

Image of a garage with the Batman logo to illustrate the need to master mnemonic devices

How To Master the Must-Have Mnemonic Devices

Think about Batman, Iron Man or any of the great comic book heroes that aren’t aliens, mutants or otherwise supernatural in some way.

What is the greatest weapon in their arsenal?

Their tech, right?

They have no superhuman abilities, no unusual strength, rapid healing, or anything like that.

Yet, they are known for their tools. In fact, they’d be nothing without them!

You must also have the right tools in place.

This fact means you must have a Memory Palace Network and Magnetic Imagery.

Know these techniques in depth and practice them.

Next, take the time and create your own 00-99 P.A.O. using either the Major System or the Dominic System. I also highly recommend an alphabet list using the pegword method.

But above all these mnemonic devices, here’s the most important tool in your tool belt of all:

Image of someone preparing to do pushups and maintaining beginners mindset

You Must Maintain A Lifelong Beginner’s Mindset

Ditch the holier than thou, “been there, done that,” know it all attitude.

Can we ever really know it all? It’s impossible. There’s always more to learn, always ways to improve.

After all, we don’t even know what it is that we don’t know.

To counter this eternal problem, we develop routines, we show up consistently, day after day, to continuously improve our skills and ourselves.

Face it:

You will never reach the finish line on this journey of memory, because there is always more to know. If you approach your training with this mindset the possibilities for your transformation are infinite.

Image of a young elephant learning to illustrate a memory training concept
The Most Important Memory Palace Disciplines to Train

If you’re wondering what memory discipline to start with, here’s what I suggest:

  • Names are the core foundation of memory training because everything is a name, right? Everything in this world has a name attached to it, whether that be the number 44, or Dave, who you just met at a networking event.
  • Vocabulary memorization is the core means of improving your mother tongue and learning another language. It also begins your path to memorizing…
  • Verbatim. This includes quotes, speeches, poetry, scripture and any important text that has to be memorized word for word.
  • Numbers. Although we don’t dial from memory anymore, historical dates, prices, passwords and computer code all still have them.

Summary And Your Next Steps

Now that you have your why, you have the tools in place, and your daily system is established, now what?

Journal your why. Really understand what it is that you’re doing and what you’re training for. What is the outcome that you want and why do you want it?

Identify your mission. If you’re thinking “Well, isn’t my mission identifying my why?”…

Not necessarily. If you want to learn a language, there’s multiple layers to that. Is your goal A1 or A2 mastery? Establish that specific mission inside the mission to get your outcome.

Then break even that mission down into even more precise mini-missions.

For example, with learning language, you could say “Today I’m going to study the colors,” or “Today I’ll focus on words that begin with the letter A.” Break everything down into manageable tasks day by day.

Finally, get the tools in place if you don’t have them already and schedule your practice.

That is all, and it really isn’t too much to ask. Not if you want a truly unshakeable Memory Palace training routine.

Not if you want to be sturdy as a mountain.

Do you?

The post How to Create An UNSHAKABLE Memory Palace Training Routine appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

It's easy to get overwhelmed when using memory techniques to achieve your learning goals. But if you create a Memory Palace training routine the right way, daily results fall into place. Learn how now. It's easy to get overwhelmed when using memory techniques to achieve your learning goals. But if you create a Memory Palace training routine the right way, daily results fall into place. Learn how now. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 28:16
3 POWERFUL Elaborative Encoding Memory Exercises Thu, 04 Jul 2019 04:21:36 +0000 0 <p>Elaborative Encoding is a memory science term. When I dug into it, I discovered some powerful memory exercises. Read these now for better memory.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">3 POWERFUL Elaborative Encoding Memory Exercises</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Feauture image for Magnetic Memory Method post on elaborative encoding memory exercisesElaborative encoding isn’t the sexiest term memory science has come up with, is it?

No, but it sure is fantastic when it plays out in real life.

After all, use this memory technique well, and you can  memorize a dozen names (or more) at any meeting or party.

Not to mention several dozen details about:

  • Occupations
  • Hobbies
  • Relationship statuses
  • Locations
  • Educational and professional backgrounds
  • … and much, much more!

Imagine being able to remember so much about all the people you meet… within seconds of hearing the details.

Wouldn’t that be a great skill to have?

(If you don’t think so, I’d love to hear why not in the comment section below!)

The best part (when you have these skills)?

You’ll have it all perfectly organized and reachable in your mind. These details will have literally gone from short term memory to long term memory within seconds.

Don’t Fear Memory Science!

Now, I realize that a lot of people hear the scientific terms for how memory techniques work and are immediately turned off.

If that’s you, here’s the blunt truth:

You’re missing out on a huge opportunity to improve your memory by understanding more about how and why it works.

And even though a term like “elaborative encoding” sounds complicated, it is actually:

  • Simpler than you might think
  • Something you’re doing already …
  • And always beneficial to practice so you get better over time

To help you out, I’ve designed three memory-boosting elaborative encoding exercises.

But first, you’ll be best served by understanding exactly what elaborative encoding is.

Image of a networked globe to express a concept related to Elaborative Encoding

Effective elaborative encoding is like having a vibrant, multi-connected ecosystem of connections in your mind

What is “Elaborative Encoding”?

Defining elaborative encoding is elementary! Yes, really!

And it’s not so much a thing, as it is a thing you do when using memory techniques.

This simple mental task starts with linking information that you want to remember with existing knowledge.

For example:

There’s a guy named Hunter at Burger Project (in Brisbane) where I go to get grass fed beef burgers (no bun).

I memorized his name almost automatically because I linked the information, Hunter’s name, with information I already know about hunters.

And I put several layers of that information together within seconds of hearing his name. I linked him to a camouflage-clad man with a gun, and not a generic one. Rather, I used my favorite Looney Tunes hunter, Elmer Fudd.

Image of Elmer Fudd on a hunter as a mnemonic example

Elmer Fudd with the old Nintendo gun for Duck Hunt worked great as my Magnetic Image for “Hunter”

At the same time, I put that old plastic gun from the Nintendo game Duck Hunt in Hunter’s hand. (Not in reality, but in my imagination.)

By taking his name and associating it with Elmer Fudd and then going one step further and adding Duck Hunt, I was elaborating my mental imagery. In addition to thinking about what all of this looked like, I also:

  • Heard the sound of a duck-hunting gun and Elmer Fudd’s voice
  • Felt the Nintendo gun in my hand
  • Imagined the smell of gun smoke
  • Imagined the taste of roasted duck

In each case, I made the image weird, larger than life and filled it with vibrant action. Hunter literally shot Elmer Fudd before I started eating him as if he were a duck.

All combined, these layers of elaboration made the name Hunter even more memorable. This process only took a few seconds, and I’ve never forgotten his name since.

What Else Can This Style of Mnemonic Elaboration Be Used For?

Not, you may think that this all sounds fine and dandy for names. But here’s the thing:

Elaborative encoding can be applied to any knowledge.

If you can take that knowledge, make associations and manipulate size, color, speed, duration, distance, mood, emotion, and space… you can memorize anything.

When can elaborative encoding be used?

Any time.

But in the beginning, just focus on the keywords related to the information you want added to your knowledgebase.

From there, you can branch out to more challenging memory tasks, like memorizing scripture.

Otherwise, you’re creating more work for yourself before you have the needed skill set. Why put the cart ahead of the horse?

The Main Tools of Elaborative Encoding

Elaborative encoding is both semantic and echoic.

Semantic encoding has to do with the structure, and oftentimes, meaning of information.

For example, in learning the letters of the alphabet, you probably didn’t start with the letter Q.

Instead, you learned your A, B, Cs through song, in alphabetical order (a structure).

You concentrated on each letter individually as you learned the sound each letter makes.

Later, you learned how to recognize them when written, and how to write them yourself.

The Magisterial Role Of Mental “Free” Association

To take another example, if I say the word “red,” you might picture a stop sign, firetruck, or big, juicy apple. You associate red with its meaning, with examples of that color in the world. This is an element of elaborative encoding.

But that’s not all …

Elaborative encoding can also be echoic, or relating to sound.

It can be the literal interpretation or imitation of sounds, such as onomatopoeia:

A frog croaks, bees buzz, cats meow, and horses neigh.

These sounds are familiar and engrained, so that when we hear a “woof,” we instantly picture a dog.

All of these connections are already in your brain. That’s what makes it so easy to use them along with the classic memory techniques.

Sound like “free” creativity?

It is. The only cost is being human.

What Else Can You Elaborate? …

You don’t have to stop with elaborating your mental imagery. You can also…

Elaborate organization itself.


Memory Palaces are the go-to tool of most mnemonists. They are in essence the palette upon which we “paint” our elaborative encoding.

Other tools include the alphabet image list of the pegword method, as well as the 00-99 PAO List.

These organizational tools, powerful on their own, can be multiplied by using them in combination with each other. Think of them as elaboration inside of elaboration.

I help you further here:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Elaborate your state.

Think of the state that you’re in. What is it that you’re doing? Are you relaxed, present, and aware, or just simply floating through your day? Make use of relaxation and meditation techniques, even breathing exercises, to elaborate your personal state.

For example, in the beginning, you’ll want to beware of noise. It can distract you as you try to memorize. Later, as memory expert John Graham shares, yo should practice Memory Palaces in both noisy and quiet environments for mental simulation.

Elaborate your memory consolidation.

It is no secret that sleep is very important for memory consolidation, but it is not as widely known that is dependent on your age, meaning memory elaboration decreases with age.

It’s therefore a “no brainer” that we should try to squeeze every ounce of benefit to our memory by practicing good sleep habits, as well as tending to our overall health in general.

This means a proper diet, socialization (face-to-face interactions with others, and a consistent, daily routine, including a morning ritual to start your day off in the best possible way.

So how do we put all these ideas into practice so that our memory improvement efforts flow? With three simple exercises (check this out for more advanced Memory Palace training exercises):

Title card for the abstract concepts memory exercise

#1: The Abstract Concepts Elaboration Exercise

The goal of this exercise is to practice the elaborative encoding of concepts.

To begin, select a list of non-visual concepts, or words.

Nothing fancy!

Seriously. There’s no need to run to a dictionary of philosophy (though you can if you want).

Just start with concept words you already know. These are words that contain basic concepts and ideas like:

  • Justice
  • Truth
  • Economy

Try to come up with a list of 10 such conceptual words that are already familiar to you.

If 10 is too much, you can always scale back. Challenge yourself appropriately, while avoiding piling on so many concepts that you just wind up frustrated.

Once you have your list established, use a Memory Palace with an appropriate number of Magnetic Stations, and make associations that let you memorize the words on your list.

James Hetfield pointing at statue of justice with his guitar

For example, if you’re a metalhead, Metallica’s …And Justice for All probably comes to mind when you hear the term justice.

In this case, you could use James Hetfield to represent justice. Or maybe an icon of justice has stolen his guitar, and he wants it back.

Are you more of a comic book fan?

No problem! Think about Superman and his infamous tagline, “Truth, justice, and the American way.”

Encode your entire list, making associations with your memory palace, elaborating these associations – maybe Superman is tossing tea on James Hetfield’s guitar, causing Hetfield to seek justice. By bringing the two together…

You’re elaborating elaboration!  That is a very powerful way to boost your memory, indeed.

Finally, test the strength of your abstract elaborations. Use Recall Rehearsal as you write out your list into your Memory Journal.

For more practice, add more conceptual words. Now might be the time to get out that dictionary of philosophy!

Title card for the name elaboration exercise

#2: The Name Elaboration Exercise

Next, put together a list of names.

What kind of names? How about ones that relate to your field of interest?

Are you a budding scientist? List pioneers in your field.

If you’re an aspiring artist, who are your influences?

Are you a talented home cook? Who are some of your favorite professional chefs?

To take another example, memory science is obviously important to me, both personally and professionally. Two innovators in the field are Fergus Craik and Robert Lockheart.

I can remember Fergus Craik by recalling my aunt’s mother who used to live in Fergus, Ontario.

Craik sounds similar to kraken, a mythological sea creature. So, perhaps my aunt’s mother is battling a kraken.

With Robert Lockheart, I remember this same aunt’s brother was named Robert.

While her mom is battling the kraken, Robert is having his heart ripped out by the Loch Ness monster.

Quite an image, right?

Not until it has all of the Magnetic Modes, it isn’t.

I need to add sound, some sense of feeling, and everything taught in the Magnetic Memory Method Masterclass to make sure the images really pop out in my Memory Palaces.

With your list of names, always seek to push the limits. The more “out there,” the more poignant it will be in your mind.

Encode your list, just as you did with concepts, using names, practice Recall Rehearsal, and test yourself.

Title card for the vocabulary elaboration exercise

#3: The Vocabulary Elaboration Exercise

For this exercise, choose vocabulary in your mother tongue.

(Or, for more of a challenge, choose words from a foreign language. Here’s 15 reasons why learning a language is good for your brain.)

Make associations for this vocabulary in Memory Palaces, elaborate the associations, and then test yourself.

If you feel like you’re doing “too much,” or going “too far,” it’s just right.

Focus on the elaboration of the information and elaborate the elaborations. Then you can focus on increasing memory retention

Push forward and make sure you’re not just settling with good enough in your practice. Good enough will not sharpen your skills when it counts. You need to be challenged.

Your Next Steps Along The Never Ending Memory Adventure…

It’s easy really.

Step beyond the exercises and into the realm of use.

And as many kinds of use as you can.

For example, use these memory exercises in your daily learning practice across multiple disciplines. The more connections you make along your daily learning journey, the faster and more intuitively elaborations will come to your mind.

Finally, challenge yourself.

Try adding numbers to names. Learn the Major Method or Dominic System to make this possible.

Also, mix and match these powerful brain exercises. Use vocabulary paired with names and concepts.

Constantly evolve your practice by adding challenges. Scale back if frustration occurs, and then add more challenge before you’re ready so you keep growing.

Then, the next time you’re at an event and you meet new people, you’ll have no problems whatsoever coming up with the perfect Magnetic Image for each and every person you meet.

Bonus Memory Training Content:

Check out the replay of this training with a live audience in the house. And make sure you’re subscribed if you want to join us for future sessions.

The post 3 POWERFUL Elaborative Encoding Memory Exercises appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Elaborative Encoding is a memory science term. When I dug into it, I discovered some powerful memory exercises. Read these now for better memory. Elaborative Encoding is a memory science term. When I dug into it, I discovered some powerful memory exercises. Read these now for better memory. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 22:26
Delayed Gratification Tips For Memory Training With Matt Dobschuetz Wed, 19 Jun 2019 23:18:51 +0000 0 <p>If you don't have strategies for delaying gratification, you're robbing from your memory training efforts. Matt Dobschuetz of Recovered Man offers help.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Delayed Gratification Tips For Memory Training With Matt Dobschuetz</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Matt Dobschuetz portrait for Magnetic Memory Method PodcastAll self improvement requires delayed gratification, especially memory training.

Now, I’m going to take you on an 180 degree spin, into the heart of a storm many millions of people face. Particularly men.

You see, I get a lot of private questions from people about memory.

And one of them involves online addiction, particularly around porn.

And that leads to compulsive behaviors, one of them being masturbation, more colorfully known as “fapping.”

Guess what?

Too much of it, especially when you’re wired for hours in front of a screen, definitely robs your memory of energy that could be used for memory training.


There’s no denying that more of this behavior is happening now than ever before.

The good news is that people have become incredibly frank about the problem.

In fact, I often receive this question in my inbox:

“Should I try a no-fap challenge to help me improve my memory?”

To date, I’ve never addressed the question formally.

An instead of taking the stance and saying, “If porn and masturbation is a distraction from your memory training, eliminate it and see what happens,” I decided to call in an expert. 

So let me introduce you to my friend Matt Dobschuetz.

Matt’s the man behind Porn Free Radio and He is a podcast show host, author and recovery coach for men dealing with addictions to pornography with one on one and group coaching through REV Group Coaching, which he founded.

On this episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast, Matt and I discuss the problems porn addiction creates for your memory training progress. 

Memory Vs. Porn Addiction (And How You Can Win)

We cover methods to overcome these memory-robbing impulses, and the science behind why that dependency develops in the first place.

Matt shares his own journey with overcoming porn addiction and we discuss how it relates to memory, and how using memory techniques can help to eliminate porn dependency.

If you struggle with true intimacy with a partner…

If you find yourself gravitating towards masturbation for stress relief …

If your sexual confidence is so low it’s almost nonexistent …

And if you habitually watch pornography and don’t even know why …

This podcast is for you.

Press play now and learn more about:

  • The rise in pornography accessibility with broadband internet and smartphones
  • How erectile dysfunction relates to porn dependency
  • Lack of focus as the result of a pornography habit
  • The true reason behind lack of confidence in the bedroom
  • How the experience of failure with overcoming porn addiction can bleed into everyday areas of life (school, work, and even simple conversations with the potential partners)
  • How to recognize patterns that create opportunities for eliminating porn use and change those destructive patterns to positive growth habits
  • Relating the Challenge-Frustration Curve to breaking the porn addiction cycle
  • How to use memory techniques and exercises to overcome porn dependency and porn habit behaviors
  • What triggers porn addictive behaviors (it’s less automatic than you think)
  • How to deal with triggers and threats when they occur in real-life situations, both head on and through elimination techniques
  • Using self-identification as a means to combat porn habit behaviors
  • Being present and connected as powerful tools for recovery

My biggest takeaway from our interview?

I feel like the issues boils down to an inability to delay gratification. If you’d rather watch this episode of the podcast to discover tips for better strategies, just click play below:

Further Resources From And on the Web:

Recovered Man (Matt’s official website)

REV Group Coaching

Recovered Man on Facebook

Matt Dobschuetz on Twitter

“Is Pornography Addictive?” (APA online)

Neuroscience of Internet Pornography Addiction

Your Brain on Porn

Surviving PTSD with the Help of Memory Techniques featuring Nicholas Castle

The post Delayed Gratification Tips For Memory Training With Matt Dobschuetz appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

If you don't have strategies for delaying gratification, you're robbing from your memory training efforts. Matt Dobschuetz of Recovered Man offers help. If you don't have strategies for delaying gratification, you're robbing from your memory training efforts. Matt Dobschuetz of Recovered Man offers help. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:27:38
3 Ways Low Student Debt Helped Me Preserve Memory In Grad School Fri, 14 Jun 2019 23:38:47 +0000 5 <p>Taking on student debt stresses your memory. I was able to preserve memory while in university by taking fewer loans. Listen now to find out how.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">3 Ways Low Student Debt Helped Me Preserve Memory In Grad School</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a wallet clamped in a vice to illustrate a concept relating to debt and negative effects on memoryDon’t you hate that feeling every year as more fees and living expenses stack up… and it always seems like job prospects are plummeting? 

If you’re nodding yes, let me tell you:

I’ve been there. 

I remember one day during the depths of my deepest depressions receiving an ominous letter. It said that my loans were coming due much earlier than expected. 

The loan people didn’t care that I had a documented history with mental illness and even won some scholarships just for people with medical issues like mine.

They didn’t care that they were sending the letter at the worst possible time as I my exam dates were drawing ever nearer during the dark of winter.

The Debt Collectors Don’t Care About The Stress On Your Memory

And they certainly didn’t give a damn that my doctoral supervisor had recently given me a soul crushing reality-check speech. While on a walk, he told me how it was very unlikely that anyone graduating during my year was ever going get the job of their dreams. 

Well, even though this letter hit me hard when I received it, I at least had one thing going for me that most of my fellow students did not. And this special strategy ensured that I had a high return on investment, even while going into debt. 

Let me tell you all about it, along with a few other strategies that helped me keep my debt low that ANY student can put in place right now. I’m also including a powerful fact about student debt at the end you’re not going to want to miss.

The Tips Are For University Students, And Good
For Anyone Struggling With Debt

None of what I’m about to share with you is meant to make you think I’m an arrogant braggart.

Far from it.

I’ve just had a low tolerance for risk all my life. That’s a good thing. It’s made me productive and reduced a lot of problems. My hope is that these tips will help any student stop risking so much so you can focus on the lovely adventure of life without so much strain and pain.

Plus, I’ve made sure these tips will help anyone struggling with any kind of debt. You don’t need the stress on your memory.

The best part?

Low stress helps you preserve memory ability, the number one asset we all need to cherish and protect above anything else.

So here’s the first thing I want to share that helped keep my student debt incredibly low while making sure that my jobs weren’t a waste of time:

1. Get The Best Possible Jobs

I always worked during university, and with a few rare exceptions, I found jobs that either directly supplemented my education or kept my mind free for contemplation. 

Okanagan University College Salmon Arm British Columbia

The first institute of higher learning I attended and worked at.

In this first case, I worked in three libraries:

The Okanagan University College library on the Salmon Arm campus, the Prince George Public Library and as an assistant to the head research librarian at York University. 

Prince George Public Library

The Prince George Public Library is a great Memory Palace and workplace.

These jobs were great for one simple reason:

In each position, I could either listen to audiobooks while replacing books and shelf-reading, or do my own research while learning from a master. 

Being able to spend time on my own goals while sharpening my skills helped reduce stress as well because these roles wasted barely a minute of precious time. Nothing bugged me more then, and nothing bothers me more to this day, than frittering away time on work that builds someone else’s dreams with out also developing my own. 

Were these hugely well-paying jobs? On one level, no, but every penny helped me borrow less on my student loans. And each paid off incredibly well in terms of what I learned and how I could perform double-duty.

Plus, I would always find unexpected information that accelerated learning and memory techniques helped me rapidly remember and connect with my own projects. 

My Secret Strategy For Getting Expensive Books For Free

Even better, I was able to directly request these libraries order books I needed, and most of the time they would, and even speed up the process because it was an internal request. This simple benefit saved oodles of money in the long run. 

Finally, library staff are usually very knowledgeable people, if not scholars themselves. That makes librarians a pleasure to be around.

Overall, these jobs were golden, so if you’ve never thought about working for either a university or public library, I highly recommend both. 

The Public Film “Library” That Gave Me Heaps Of Memory Exercise

Along these lines, I also worked for the legendary Queen Video in Toronto.

Queen Video Bloor Street Store front Toronto Ontario

I worked at the Queen Street and Bloor Street stores. This one was my favorite.

Since Film Studies were a huge part of all my degrees, it was amazing to have direct access to what was then considered the biggest collection of VHS and DVDs in North America.

Although much busier than some of my library jobs, the endless questions about movies from the patrons kept me on my toes. Plus, the constant requests exercised my memory all day long. 

And it really was all day because my shifts were from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. with only three breaks!

The Neighborhood Debt Reducer

More grueling jobs included my own little business of mowing lawns and shoveling snow across East York, or when I worked to assist the elderly in their homes through Community Care East York.

But I kept my eyes and ears open during this time and gathered dozens of Memory Palaces.

More importantly, I heard many stories about life from the senior citizens of our neighborhood. Their autobiographies were priceless because every time I went to work, I had multi-perspectives from stories of war and economic depression that helped me remember just how good I had things, even if my clinical depression legitimately felt like the hell it was.

Personally knowing many survivors of equally, albeit differently tough times was one of the greatest medicines. 

Plus, if you ever find yourself working in the homes of the elderly, you might just find yourself getting fed. I don’t have exact stats on how much money I saved during those years, but it was impossible getting out of those places without being invited to dinner or leaving with a bounty of fruit and vegetables from the gardens I helped tend.

Gardening Advantages Beyond A Quick Buck

And gardening not only reduces stress, but also gives you a skill set you can use for life. Tending tomatoes, mowing lawns and shoveling snow not only made me lots of money, but came with ample tips made from the currency of high quality homemade food. I was too stupid at the time to feed myself properly, so without these wonderful people, I probably would have died from malnutrition. 

I have many more stories of the jobs I held, but in sum, if you can’t find a decent job to help keep your loans and spending down, make one.

There’s no magic to it. I just knocked on the doors in my neighborhood, the same strategy that ultimately led to me getting a major research grant after I graduated, a story for another time.

As an additional tip, you can explore the advantages of bilingualism by helping families that speak a language you’re learning. The extra exposure and practice will help your fluency and make you a more attractive candidate for hire in the future. 

2. Budget and Monitor Your Expenses

Even as I was accumulating student debt that drove me bonkers with stress, I followed a budget and allocated resources for the things I needed. 

Image of Books with headphones to express the concept of the audiobook

For example, I couldn’t concentrate during my depressions, so I had to buy a lot of audiobooks.

Back then there was no such thing as Audible, the library wasn’t able to get some of the exact programs I wanted, and in this case, there were crazy amounts of shipping.

But because I budgeted for learning materials, I was able to get what I needed and then sometimes resell the programs after siphoning the information into my mind. 

I could do this because, except for wasting too much money on the booze I used to self-medicate my depression (never realizing it was actually worsening it), I walked or rode my bike everywhere I could.

Also, I figured out a few ways to reduce the trips I needed to take to campus. For example, a few times I arranged to be write additional research papers in lieu of attendance grades.

One course in particular had 20% of the grade weighted just on showing up.

How Negotiating Better Class Attendance Saves Cash On Commuting

I told the professor I loved him and loved attending his course, but really needed an alternative arrangement. We agreed upon the length and depth of the additional work I would do, and bang presto, I completed the entire course without having to travel to the campus again from that day on.

And he really had no hard feelings. In fact, years later, he wound up sitting on my dissertation defense committee. This arrangement saved not only time, but also the transit fees.

The Zen Of Walking And Biking Towards Knowledge

Likewise, I took two directed reading courses in grad school.

In both cases, I arranged to meet the professors in cafes I could reach by bike or foot. On the one hand, a directed reading course can be more intense and feel like more work.

To be honest, it also lays more scrutiny on the work you produce because the professor isn’t forced to split attention to other students. But this is ultimately a good thing because it sharpens you for the career yet to come. 

Saving Tips From An Academic Monagamist

Also, this next one might seem like a weird tip, but I found it useful for many reasons:

Have a steady romantic partner and treat it like a marriage. 

All throughout university, I saw people driving themselves crazy with romantic pursuits instead of focusing on their studies.

Anthony Metivier on a date to drink coconut milk

Enjoying an inexpensive and soulful date in an amazing cafe that is also a powerful Memory Palace.

Look, I’m flesh and blood too, but dating is not only financially draining, but the many emotions drain energy too.

So I gave up the endless chase of the dating buffet for the less exotic, but ultimately more satisfying long-term game, even if I knew these relationships would ultimately not last.

I’m not really the best person to be giving relationship advice. But when it comes to everything that went into getting my PhD, purely through the observation of others (many of whom never made it to the finish line), I really do feel I spared myself a lot of drama and expense.

I circumvented a ton of pain by cultivating long-term romances, keeping them deep, but simple. And since they were usually with other university students, they were largely intellectual. Other than books and beverages, talking philosophy for hours on end is free and easy review and hardly costs a thing. 

3. Use Memory Techniques

The beauty of using memory techniques effectively and well is that you never fail exams. Absolute success means you never have to take courses over again or stack on additional years to complete your degree.

I saw many people fail courses and extend their stay at university, which ultimately stacks on more debt. The sooner and more directly you graduate, the less your education costs.

My first and second Master degrees, for example, were both two year programs and in each case, I completed them in just one, saving significant fees.

I also completed my PhD program ahead of and was even found eligible to pause the fees for an entire year while I waited for the dissertation defense committee to find a date for the great intellectual grilling.

This pause in paying tuition helped me leave Toronto, live in Manhattan and I even found a teaching gig over in New Jersey (at Rutgers) during this time. 

In other words, you not only save tons of time you can direct at other activities when you can learn faster and remember more.

You can also find other jobs that pave the path to a better future. For example, it helped a lot that I had Rutgers on my CV and a great reference when I knocked on the door of a director’s office in Germany. But if I’d been learning like a slow-poke, I wouldn’t have had the time to accumulate more practical experience in my field. 

So if you need to know how I memorized so much info so quickly, get started now:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

You’ll love how it helps you strategize a full Memory Palace Network you can use to gobble down knowledge and keep it in your brain for when you need it. 

About that fact I mentioned at the beginning, there is an interesting study showing that student loan debt is negatively influencing how often people get married.

This research suggests that if you want to have a better marriage, or even get married at all, keep your debt as low as possible. Student debt may also cause people to have fewer kids too, so keep that in mind if you dream about having a family one day. 

Next, I suggest you watch these videos, hit the thumbs up, get subscribed if you aren’t already and keep the conversation going below. Thanks as always for the view, and until next time, keep yourself Magnetic! 

The post 3 Ways Low Student Debt Helped Me Preserve Memory In Grad School appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Taking on student debt stresses your memory. I was able to preserve memory while in university by taking fewer loans. Listen now to find out how. Taking on student debt stresses your memory. I was able to preserve memory while in university by taking fewer loans. Listen now to find out how. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 22:14
3 Blazing Fast Ways To Increase Memory Retention Thu, 06 Jun 2019 05:47:38 +0000 2 <p>Memory retention... what the heck is it? Is it worth worrying about? If so, can it be improved? We're going to cover memory retention in today's and make it blazing fast in today's post.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">3 Blazing Fast Ways To Increase Memory Retention</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a car blazing across train tracks to express a concept related to memory retentionMemory retention… what the heck is it? Is it worth worrying about? If so, can it be improved?

We’re going to cover memory retention on this page and give you three blazing fast ways you can increase your ability to retain information.

The Simplest Definition Of Memory Retention

Overall, this term from the world of memory science is simply defined:

It is the ability to keep any information for different periods of time for the purpose of using it in the future.

And so if someone gives you their name, but you can’t use their name in a conversation, you haven’t retained it.

Why exactly we retain some things and not others is the subject for another post, but basically, we don’t really need a more robust definition for memory training purposes.

Nonetheless, you might be wondering about the differences between short term memory and long term memory when it comes to memory retention.

You might even be wondering about how working memory plays into the mix when it comes to learning faster and remembering more.

These are all great questions that we’ll be covering in the future, so make sure you have this so you’ll be notified:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Now, another question people ask is…

Why Is Memory Retention Important?

In addition to practical matters like remembering names, passing exams and learning new languages, memory retention helps you connect with yourself.

Think about it:

Every time you can’t recall information about your own life… it feels kind of weird, if not outright painful.

Self-punishment ensues and usually that only exacerbates the memory problems you might be facing.

So with an eye to helping you feel more connected with yourself, let’s dive into three rapid ways you can increase memory retention.

Image of a brain shining with radiant light to express a cared for mind

1. Take Better Care Of Your Brain

Look, I know everyone wants memory techniques that are easy and fun to use.

However, it only makes sense to care for the engine that makes memory possible in the first place.

For example, many people who complain of brain fog don’t need memory techniques on their own. They simply aren’t eating well.

Although diet is a tricky matter, you’ll find certain foods help improve memory better than others.

Diet has been a huge problem for me throughout my life, but I’ve one a lot to fix it and experienced much better memory as a result.

In my case, chronic pain has been the most mentally taxing and distracting problem.

Pain makes paying attention difficult.

When you can’t pay attention to information, memory retention goes out the window.

Reduce the pain, and your ability to pay attention and retain information in memory automatically goes up.

(And no, in case you’re wondering, these memory improvement vitamins are unlikely to help.)

Sleep Secrets for Better Memory Few People Consider

Next, we have sleep.

Although you might not normally think of it this way, not having enough sleep also creates pain the interrupts the ability to pay attention.

Being groggy and irritated, for example, is a kind of pain.

Plus, the brain simply cannot perform as well unrested as it can when you’re getting enough sleep.

What are the secrets?

  • Computer curfew
  • Journaling by hand, including gratitude journaling
  • Planning the next day’s activities
  • Bedtime rituals
  • Morning memory fitness activities, such as dream recall

Just by attending to diet and sleep (and stopping smoking), you can improve your memory retention, and it will happen faster than you might think.

Image of two brains beaming with light to express the benefits of memory exercise

2. Get Regular Memory Exercise

One of the easiest ways to improve memory retention is to regularly use your memory.

There are at least two kinds of memory exercise:

Active and passive.

I’ve got a wide variety of brain exercises you can play with, and here’s a condensed version of my favorite from the passive category.

It’s called The Four Details Exercise. All you do is notice 4 details about a person.

Don’t use any memory techniques. Just observe.

Later in the day, ask yourself to recall those details.

No Need To Give Yourself A Grade

It’s not a right or wrong memory retention test. It’s just a quick jog to make sure that you’re giving your memory regular exercise.

Active memory exercises for increasing retention might include using memory techniques. Here’s where “right and wrong” comes into play, and that’s all part of the fun.

For example, you can memorize a deck of cards and work on increasing either your speed of encoding, or the volume you can encode. Test yourself for accuracy of retention over different stretches of time (5 minutes, 5 hours, 5 days, etc).

You can increase speed and volume with names, vocabulary, abstract shapes, numbers and even verbatim texts like song lyrics or poems.

Likewise, you can actively memorize vocabulary, historical dates, or the names of everyone in a company you want to work for (or already do).

Image of a lightbulb surrounded by icons that represent learning multiple topics

3. Have A Long Term Learning Project

Okay, I know this doesn’t sound like a “blazing fast” tactic. But in reality, it is.

Here’s why:

Learning a language or memorizing large texts that you focus on over the long term produces incredible short term benefits when it comes to memory retention.

Improvements will happen for you because, as you use memory techniques consistently, you’ll build up something called “memory reserve.”

This term means that the more you know, the more you can know.

Why You Should Learn A Language To Increase Your Ability To Retain Information

Take language learning, for example.

As soon as you know about 850 words, you have all the building blocks you need to snap on more and more vocabulary and phrases.

Each new word and phrase you add builds up your memory reserve.

And this memory reserve helps explain why many people find it easier to pick up their next language. They’ve become good at the skill of building their memory reserve.

When it comes to memorizing large texts, I’ve been doing this with some scriptures written in Sanskrit.

The more I memorize, the easier it becomes to memorize even more due to this effect of memory reserve.

For example, the pool of Magnetic Imagery grows. Having more to draw upon means fewer Magnetic Images are fired off with less effort.

You’ll find this is also true when memorizing texts in your mother tongue. The more you do it, the greater ease with which you can move through words, expressions, ideas and more.

And again, you don’t have to wait forever for the memory retention benefits to kick in.

How To Start Investing In Your Brain (And Keep Consistent)

Just get started.

I know that sounds simplistic, but how else would you do it?

Next, be consistent. That means showing up at least a little.

Ideally, you’ll train your brain every day, but four times a week is a bare minimum.

Before you know it, you’ll feel like you have a completely revived brain that can conquer the world of information overwhelm with ease.

Again, we’ll talk in the future more about things like short term, long term and working memory, but the reality is that all these aspects of memory work together.

By following the 3 simple tips in the following video companion to this post, you’ll be working them comprehensively, holistically, and, dare I say, Magnetically.

The post 3 Blazing Fast Ways To Increase Memory Retention appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Memory retention... what the heck is it? Is it worth worrying about? If so, can it be improved? We're going to cover memory retention in today's and make it blazing fast in today's post. Memory retention... what the heck is it? Is it worth worrying about? If so, can it be improved? We're going to cover memory retention in today's and make it blazing fast in today's post. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 15:34
Bilingualism Advantages That Fortify Your Brain With Bartosz Czekala Thu, 30 May 2019 02:56:17 +0000 4 <p>Bartosz Czekala from Universe of Memory joins us for an unfiltered conversation about language learning, memory and bilingualism advantages that fortify the health of your brain. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Bilingualism Advantages That Fortify Your Brain With Bartosz Czekala</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p>

Are you struggling to understand all of the bilingualism advantages people keep talking about?

Are you jealous of people already learning their third (or even fourth) language? Does bilingualism seem like something that’s simply out of reach? Do you feel as if you’re being held back by some invisible force to meet your goals in language learning?

Oftentimes we are crippled by our misconceptions of learning another language.

Worse, a lot of people don’t know just how beneficial bilingualism is for the human brain.

As a result, people blindly believe they’re just not smart enough.

Worse, they think that mass marketed learning methods “won’t,” or “don’t” work. That’s a big problem, especially if we’ve hit a wall with our learning journey. We tend to blame the techniques without looking at our strategies for using them. 

The Biggest Problems Language Learners Face

We may falsely believe we just don’t have the time to dedicate to learning a language, “It’s too late to start,” or we know we’ll never have the opportunity for immersion learning, so we simply give up.

My guest today on Magnetic Memory Method Podcast is Bartosz Czekala from Universe of Memory

As a multi-linguist, language teacher, and someone with a background in computer science, econometrics, and legal translation, Bartosz is also strikes me as world class mnemonist. With Polish as his native language, he learned Swedish in only four months, and speaks seven additional languages.

The Ultimate Bilingualism Advantages Await

To share his knowledge, Bartosz’ website pairs memory techniques with learning systems to help you master language learning in fun and creative ways.

Today we run the gamut of the journey of learning another language, from common barrier to success to the methods for guaranteed results and the pros and cons of various learning techniques. We explore the relationship of memory to language studies and the science behind it all.

If you’re looking for a real, unfiltered conversation about language learning, struggling to come to terms with “Is it for me?” this is the podcast for you.

In sum: it is possible to learn a foreign language. You just need to equip yourself with the right tools.

Just press play now to learn about:

  • The effect of diet and sleep on memory, specifically fasting and sleep deprivation
  • The correlation between focus and concentration and eating habits
  • The impact of the sun on overall mental health
  • How results are possible with every memory method, but not always optimal
  • The impracticality of apps for language learning
  • The biggest issues with textbooks and word frequency
  • The argument for spaced repetition and its usage for learning another language
  • The importance of being a “scientist” in your own mind
  • The benefits of context and meaning to learning foreign language vocabulary
  • Passive exposure versus active learning
  • How knowing multiple languages fortifies the health of your brain’s neural networks, lessen the forgetting curve, and maybe even give you an incredible career
  • Pros and cons of immersion and proxemics for language learning
  • The differences in language learning in adolescence versus adulthood

Further Resources on the Web, This Podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Bartosz’s Universe of Memory

Bartosz Czekala on LinkedIn

How to Learn Faster and Rediscover the Joy of Learning

The Science of Language Learning: How Learning a Language Affects Us

How to Learn and Memorize the Vocabulary of Any Language

The Freedom Journal For Language Learning

Teach Yourself (MMM Podcast Interview with Olly Richards)

Stoic Secrets for Using Memory Techniques with Language Learning

The post Bilingualism Advantages That Fortify Your Brain With Bartosz Czekala appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Bartosz Czekala from Universe of Memory joins us for an unfiltered conversation about language learning, memory and bilingualism advantages that fortify the health of your brain. Bartosz Czekala from Universe of Memory joins us for an unfiltered conversation about language learning, memory and bilingualism advantages that fortify the health of your brain. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:23:39
Surviving PTSD With The Help of Memory Techniques Featuring Nicholas Castle Thu, 23 May 2019 03:57:53 +0000 4 <p>Nicholas Castle used memory training and memory techniques to help heal his PTSD. Listen to his incredible story and apply the knowledge to your own life, especially if you're haunted by memories of the past.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Surviving PTSD With The Help of Memory Techniques Featuring Nicholas Castle</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Photograph of Nicholas CastleHave you ever experienced trauma in your life that created mental blocks, or worse, PTSD?

Or do everyday situations remind you of terrible experiences from your past?

I know I am not alone when I say that there are painful memories that can be haunting.

From the death of a loved one, to near-death experiences and childhood trauma, we all have that “thing” that pops up from time to time and haunts us …

If we let it.

But here’s the powerful truth:

We don’t have to live our lives in a constant state of fear that these memories will be triggered.

Although we can’t prevent memories from flooding back at inopportune times, we can change how we respond to our triggers.

A Powerful PTSD Survival Story

To help those suffering from any kind of unwanted memories flooding their awareness, here’s what I’ve done:

On this episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast, I sit down with the founder of Bushcraft for Kids, Nicholas Castle.

His organization teaches children survival and outdoors skills to increase their self-motivation, life skills, and confidence through adventure.

Using these same memory techniques he teaches to his students, he explains his journey from being a young boy struggling with dyslexia to a former law enforcement officer living with post-traumatic stress disorder.

His secret to overcoming these setbacks?

The Memory Palace.

The thing that struck me most about our conversation was how versatile Memory Palaces became for Nicholas.

Not only was spatial memory and mnemonics essential to his success in his educational career, but also throughout his time in law enforcement. This role included public speaking, a healthy, but still stressful situation he had to deal with on top of his PTSD.

And you know what?

Portrait of Nicholas Castle Who Used Memory Techniques To Help Heal PTSD

Nicholas enjoying a forest that also serves as a Memory Palace

Memory techniques saved the day yet again. A bit of time out in nature helping other people seems to have contributed to Nicholas’ success too.

If you want to know how Memory Palaces can help to transform every facet of your life, especially if you are dealing with the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, like Nicholas, this episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast is for you.

Press play above and discover:

  • How creating memory palaces can improve confusion from dyslexia (a condition that didn’t stop Dominic O’Brien from creating the Dominic System)
  • An important point about the logic behind creating Memory Palaces (including prompts for and how to create them)
  • The relationship between magic and memory through association
  • Notes on the influence of Tony Buzan and Harry Lorayne
  • How mnemonics can improve public speaking
  • The precise way memory techniques reduce the stress responsible for so much memory loss
  • How using memory techniques can help to influence large groups of people
  • Commonalities between hypnosis and mnemonics
  • The potential of memory techniques to manage PTSD symptoms
  • The versatility of meditation practice for concentration
  • How to use a Memory Palace Network as a practical learning tool

Further Resources on the Web, This Podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Nicholas Castle’s organization, Bushcraft For Kids

Nicholas on Twitter

How to Improve Memory Power and Concentration by Eliminating Stress

Memory Techniques and Dyslexia

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

Test for Dyslexia: 37 Common Traits

How to Practice Memory Techniques For Studying Tough Subjects

The post Surviving PTSD With The Help of Memory Techniques Featuring Nicholas Castle appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Nicholas Castle used memory training and memory techniques to help heal his PTSD. Listen to his incredible story and apply the knowledge to your own life, especially if you're haunted by memories of the past. Nicholas Castle used memory training and memory techniques to help heal his PTSD. Listen to his incredible story and apply the knowledge to your own life, especially if you're haunted by memories of the past. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:06:44
4 Powerful Ways to Use the Pegword Method [10 Examples Included] Thu, 16 May 2019 09:06:13 +0000 2 <p>The pegword method is one of the most powerful mnemonic systems on the planet. Learn each with detailed mnemonic examples so you can get started right away.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">4 Powerful Ways to Use the Pegword Method [10 Examples Included]</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Feature image for Pegword Method Blog Post with Cobra Commander on a laundry pegThe pegword method is a simple memory technique for remembering lists of information.

I’m talking about lists filled with:

  • Vocabulary
  • Study keywords
  • Names (people, countries, foods)
  • To-do list items
  • Historical dates
  • Medical or legal terminology
  • Computer programming documentation
  • … and anything that can be organized into a list

There are a few variations to this technique. We’ll discuss 4 of them on this page.

But first, this is important:

Each pegword system involves three easy stages:

1) Setting up and remembering the system

2) Encoding new information with the system

3) Recalling the information by triggering the system

In the first stage, people learn a standard set of peg words. These “pegs” can be number-rhyme pairs or letters of the alphabet.

The Many Types of Peg System

There are different types of peg systems you can choose from. All of them use the same method: the use of a concrete object to represent each number. What’s different is how you choose the object.

We can divide these approaches into the following categories:

  1. The rhyming method
  2. The meaning method
  3. The alphabet method
  4. The look-alike method

Let’s talk about the rhyming pegs first:

1. The Number Rhyme System

Some people call this approach “the One is a Gun” technique. Many people using this approach have a pre-memorized list like this:

  • One is a gun
  • Two is a shoe
  • Three is a bee
  • Four is a door
  • Five is a hive
  • Six is drum sticks
  • Seven is Evan
  • Eight is a gate
  • Nine is wine
  • Ten is a hen

As you can see, when using the rhyming method, you create pegs that rhyme with a number to create a pre-memorized list.

In the next stage, memorizers visualize the information they want to remember and mentally link it with the rhyming word.

A High Precision Tutorial On How To Make The Links

Ideally, you don’t make your associations in the void of your mind.

Instead, I suggest you create them in a well-formed Memory Palace.

For example, if you have previously committed “two is a shoe” to memory, you can set a rule that every Magnetic Station in a Memory Palace features that shoe.

Then, when you meet a group of people and the second person tells you her name is Rose, you can instantly see a rose growing out of the shoe.

Mnemonic Example of using the pegword method to memorize the name Rose using a shoe with flowers sprouting from it

Mnemonic Example of using the pegword method to memorize the name Rose

Of course, Rose gets special treatment in your Memory Palace after you’ve shot Paul McCartney in the chest on the first station of your Memory Palace.

This will help you remember that someone new goes by the name Paul. On station three, you use the its peg to interact with an image for the next name, and so forth. This scenario is just one example, and very powerful when memorizing names at meetings or other events.

Powerful, isn‘t it?

It gets even better if you’re interested in number systems, but for now, let’s press on.

The Scientific Term For This Kind Of Mnemonic

Some researchers of memory and learning call the product of linking one word to another a composite image or picture.

In today’s example with Rose, I have brought together the peg, the given name and a part of a Memory Palace.

This process creates a singular, mental image that is easy to recall later – especially because I naturally made the image strange, vibrant and drew upon all the Magnetic Modes while creating it.

To put the process more simply, information like Rose‘s name gets ‘pegged’ to certain images. And as you‘ve seen, my preference is to also “peg” information to a Memory Palace at the same time. Everything is co-created in one fell swoop, as much as possible.

Why There’s No Need To Follow The Order

Here’s a very cool feature of this technique:

It is not dependent on retrieving the items you memorized in sequence.

For example, if you want Rose, you don’t have to start with the first piece of information and work your way through the whole sequence. You can access her name or any item on the list simply by thinking of the number rhyme.

To achieve this flexibility, initially, all you have to do is to prepare a list of peg words that can be easily retrieved and link them with other items.

How To Memorize Your Pegs

If you’re using the number-rhyme system, it‘s really quite easy. Rhyming does most of the work.

As a pro tip, always make each object specific.

For example, I don‘t use an abstract gun, but a very specific gun from the movie Videodrome.

Still from David Cronenberg's Videodrome to illustrate a mnemonic example related to pegwords

A gun from David Cronenberg’s Videodrome. It’s exactly the kind of strange imagery that makes memory techniques work so well.

For 2, I don’t use just any old shoe. I use my favorite shoes from when I was a kid. (They had velcro pockets for holding coins.)

Evan Wilds asks about the mnemonic peg system

My friend Evan

In each case, try to make each rhyme you choose concrete and specific. For 3 is a bee, I use Jerry Seinfeld from The Bee Movie. For 7, I use my friend Evan instead of something abstract like heaven.

It might take you a few minutes, or even a few hours over a weekend to land on the most specific option possible. It will be worth the effort!

If you’re struggling, you can adopt the Mind Mapping examples here for creating your imagery too. There’s always a way!

How To Mix Your Pegs With The Major System

This method is useful for many things beyond remembering names, shopping lists and errands on your to-do list.

You can use it for remembering new concepts, foreign language vocabulary, ideas, dates, potentially for verse numbers and anything you organize in a linear manner, but that doesn’t necessarily require linear recall.

To remember a date like 1789, you use would use the Major Method or the Dominic System to create images for these numbers.

Then you would link the images to one of your pegs. If assigned to your sixth peg and you are using drum sticks, you might have Tucker Max (17) pounding on a viper (89) with the drum sticks.

Mnemonic Example with Tucker Max and the Green Day Drummer drumming on Cobra Commander

Mnemonic Example with Tucker Max and the Green Day Drummer drumming on Cobra Commander

Because I focus on specificity, it’s not just any drum sticks, but the sticks used by the Green Day drummer. It’s not just any viper, but Cobra Commander from GI Joe.

I‘m giving you my specific mnemonic examples for a simple reason:

Making the images concrete and based on real things that have been interesting or important to me in life is part of what helps the memory techniques work better and faster.

You might never have heard of Green Day or played with GI Joe toys. But surely there is a drummer you find interesting and an appropriate image you can use for each of the digits from 00 to 99.

It’s really not rocket science. It just takes a small amount of focus and time after completing a memory course.

2. The Meaning Method

In the meaning method, you create pegs that help you recall the sound and meaning of the words you want to recall later.

For example, to remember the word ‘exploration’ with the rhyming pair (one is a gun), you can visualize ex-cops with guns patrolling an area where oil exploration is taking place.

Take the word “quadrangle,” to give you an additional example.

The most immediate and obvious association is a quad bike. Since a quadrangle has four sides and a quad bike has four wheels, it generally works to cover both sound and meaning.

This approach becomes incredibly streamlined the more you practice. It’s great for language learning, medicine, law, philosophy and any learning area rich with semantic meaning. This method is best used with a Memory Palace.

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

There is another type of widely used peg system. It uses alphabet letters as pegs.

Let’s check it out:

3. The Alphabet Peg System

Although this technique is essentially a variation on the Number/Rhyme method, it gives you more pegs. You can use it to remember longer lists of items in a specific order.

True, it takes more time to learn than a number-based technique, but rest assured that some people love this approach so much, they have multiple alphabet lists. And having more than one list is one of the core teachings in M.A. Kohain’s underground memory improvement book, Mnemotechnics: The Art and Science of Memory Techniques.

How to Use the Alphabet Method

In this technique, you will associate objects or people based on each letter of the alphabet. Later, you will link these alphabet associations with information you want to memorize.

Please note how I am applying the rule of specificity to each of these examples:

A – Apple laptop (the one I‘m typing this article on)

B – Batman (Michael Keaton version)

C – Chocolate (My favorite kind)

D – Dracula (As played by Bela Lugosi)

E – Elephant (Edgar, who you may have seen on my YouTube channel)

F – Fish (I use Kami the fish)

Kami the Fish Mnemonic Example for an Alphabet List

Kami the Fish, one-time mascot of Kamloops, B.C., Canada

G – Goat (I think of The Jesus Lizard album by this name)

H – House (The movie by this name and its poster)

I – Igloo (specifically the one Pingu built)

J – Jelly (as in the band, Green Jelly)

K – Kangaroo (Hippety Hopper from the Warner Bros. cartoons)

L – Lantern (from Green Lantern)

M – Mouse (Mickey Mouse)

N – Nose (as seen on Michelangelo‘s David)

O – Orange (A Clockwork Orange)

P – Pan (Peter Pan)

Q – Queen (The rock band)

R – Rat (Splinter from Ninja Turtles)

S – Shore (as in Pauley Shore)

T – Turkey (the country on a map)

U – Umbrella (in the hands of Chauncey Gardiner)

V – Van (the one from A-Team)

W – Wagon (Stagecoach, starring John Wayne)

X – Xylophone (I loved the one I had as a kid)

Y – Yarn (my mom knits)

Z  – Zed (from Pulp Fiction)

Once you have associated your images with the letters, you will then peg them to the items you wish to remember. Suppose you have to remember the following list of 10 gift items.

  1. A watch
  2. A DVD of the TV show “Friends”
  3. Camera
  4. A shoulder bag
  5. A scarf
  6. Perfume
  7. A tennis racket
  8. A pen
  9. A tea set
  10. A dress

Next, you will mentally link these items with the images that represent the letters of the alphabet. I suggest you follow the order of letters. For example, the numeric equivalent of the alphabet, a, is 1; b is 2; c is 3, and so on.

Read the list and link them with the images described above, ideally in a Memory Palace. Notice how I am making each example dramatic, dynamic and either exaggerate through action or strange.

10 Mnemonic Examples For The Alphabet System

  1. A – Apple laptop: A watch: Think of Steve Jobs smashing your favorite watch (or a very expensive one) with a laptop.
  2. B – Batman: Imagine this iconic superhero using A DVD of the TV show “Friends” as a replacement weapon to his Batarang.
  3. C – Chocolate: Camera: Human-shaped chocolates are dancing seductively during a photo shoot. The camera nearly melts because it‘s so shy.
  4. D – Dracula: A shoulder bag: Dracula tries to suck blood from a shoulder bag.
  5. E – Elephant: A scarf: An elephant chewing on a scarf as if it were hay.
  6. F – Fish: Perfume: The fish is using the perfume like pepper spray to keep a shark away.
  7. G – Goat: A tennis racket: The Jesus Lizard album “Goat” enters a tennis court and interrupts the game. The tennis racket tries to scare it away by blasting it with music.
  8. H – House: A pen: You use a pen to sign the lease to your dream house… Except it‘s a haunted hose and eats the pen!
  9. I – Igloo: A tea set: You are enjoying a cup of warm tea with your family inside an igloo as Pingu crashes into it.
  10. J – (Green Jelly): A dress: The singer of this band spoils a dress you are about to buy by spreading it with a huge jelly stain.

Recalling the items is easy.

Just bring back the image you associated with each letter. With a bit of practice, you will become a pro.

Remember: You always have multiple chances to recall the target information:

1) You have both image you associated with the letter of the alphabet

2) You have the image for the letter of the alphabet

3) You have the interaction between the two taking place in a Memory Palace

4. The Look-Alike Method

Now, before we conclude, you might be wondering…

Where the heck does this clever memory technique come from?

The Number Shape Peg System
(Origins of the Pegword Method?)

Some people attribute the first peg system to Henry Herdson. He wrote instructions on mnemonics and memory back in the mid-1600s. In Ars Memoriae (1651), Herdson suggested linking each digit from 0-9 with an object that resembles the number.

Examples Of The Number Shape Peg System

For example:

1 = candle

Mnemonic Example of number shape for 1

Mnemonic Example of a number shape for 1

2 = duck

3 = mustache

4 = sailboat, and so on.

Herdson’s images don’t sound very specific.

But even if Herdson didn’t use the Magnetic Memory Method, I suggest that you do.

For example, I think of a candle I had burning when I nearly accidentally burned down the house. This specificity makes everything stronger when I use the candle to memorize numbers.

You can find more number image examples in the Magnetic Memory Method Course How to Memorize Math, Numbers, Simple Arithmetic and Equations.

And if you feel like you don’t remember enough of your life to make each image specific enough, try these autobiographical memory exercises:

How Will You Use The Pegword Method?

As you can see, there are a lot of ways you can make pegs. You could use your favorite superheroes and then turn their bodies into Memory Palaces.

For example, Batman could be segmented into his head, shoulders, arms and legs.

There’s no end to the pegs you can create. And never forget:

Every peg can be combined with a Memory Palace for maximum effect.

So what do you say? Are you ready to create some pegs and memorize information?

The post 4 Powerful Ways to Use the Pegword Method [10 Examples Included] appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

The pegword method is one of the most powerful mnemonic systems on the planet. Learn each with detailed mnemonic examples so you can get started right away. The pegword method is one of the most powerful mnemonic systems on the planet. Learn each with detailed mnemonic examples so you can get started right away. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 27:06
Improve Short Term Memory: 7 Easy Steps To Better Memory For Life Thu, 09 May 2019 08:25:38 +0000 2 <p>Many people think you cannot improve short term memory. In truth, you can. In this podcast, I'll share 7 easy steps that will help you experience better memory for life as a result. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Improve Short Term Memory: 7 Easy Steps To Better Memory For Life</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Illustration of the cosmos in a jar to express a concepte related to a post on how to Improve Short Term MemoryEven if it feels like trying to capture the entire cosmos in a jar, it’s actually pretty easy to improve short term memory.

Would you like that?

If so, I’ll show you exactly what it takes to improve every level of your memory on this page. Just read every word for the facts and some simple memory exercises that will help you improve your overall memory quickly.

But first, we need to establish the nature of this unique memory problem.

What exactly does a problem with short-term memory look like?

A Shocking Portrait Of Short-Term Memory Loss

Imagine the following scenario, inspired by the true-to-life novel about early onset dementia, Still Alice:

You’re in the kitchen, preheating the oven to make a batch of your world-famous brownies. You’ve assembled your ingredients on the counter to prepare your batter… and then the unthinkable happens. You only have one egg left in the carton and the recipe calls for two.

Still Alice book cover

At least… that’s how you remember it.

Frustrated, you grab your keys and head to the store. You remember you’re low on paper towels and need batteries for the TV remote, so you put those in your cart as you navigate the aisles. (Perfect opportunity to create a Memory Palace, isn’t it?)

You pay for your items, load up the car, and drive home. You walk back into the kitchen and feel happy when you see that the oven’s temperature ready for your brownies. And then you realize you forgot the eggs you went to the store for in the first place!

It happens to the best of us. Our short-term memory can be seriously lacking at times. Stress, depression, lifestyle habits like sleep, diet, and exercise, even medications, can cause short-term memory difficulties.

So what do we do? Do we resign ourselves to list-making and app dependency to remember daily bits of information? Are we glued to the smartphone or pen and paper as our lifeline against forgetfulness?

Hardly. As many memory experts like Lynne Kelly and others I talk about in this video have demonstrated, you can memorize incredible amounts of information within seconds:

So please don’t lose hope. There is a better way.

And that’s why I’ve assembled the step-by-step guide on this page. I want to help you improve your short-term memory so your next learning (or baking) session goes off without a hitch.

Keep reading to discover an actual means of improving short-term memory and examples of short-term memory at work.

A Brief Definition Of Short Term Memory

While we could dive straight into the techniques of improving memory so as to not risk getting bogged down by terminology, it’s important to first define what short-term memory actually is.

We must first note that there is a difference between short, long term, and working memory. And it’s important to note the different memory problems that emerge from each.

While long term and working memory are more complex, short-term memory is simpler, with a two-fold function.

Short term memory is:

  1. An ability to understand sentences, spoken and written. It is, at its most basic, tied closely to comprehension.
  1. The ability to remember small sequences of numbers, such as telephone numbers.

Short-term memory is the type of memory that helps you understand what you are reading.

Without it, you‘d be constantly confused when studying, saying “What did I just read?”

It is also the type of memory that when you see an infomercial on television lets you remember the telephone number to call and order your Flex-Seal or airbrush makeup kit for only three easy payments of $19.95.

The Zen of Improving Short Term Memory

Because memory is so central to our overall brain function, to improve it, we must improve all of our types of memory.

This means tapping into:

  • Episodic memory
  • Figural memory
  • Procedural memory
  • Semantic memory
  • Spatial memory and even autobiographical memory. Like this:

The name of the game is comprehensive improvement. Isn’t that what we really desire anyway?

If not, we should.


Because when we focus on a complete enhancement of all aspects of our memory we will do more than improve our short-term function. We will also transcend the textbook definitions of memory.

And it feels like “Zen” because, once you’re into the rhythm of working on your memory, you’ll wonder why you never did it before. It’s so much fun!

How Anyone Can Hold Far More Than 5-8 Digits In Memory With Ease

We need to look no further than memory competitors who blur the lines of what short-term memory is defined as. The textbook definition suggests one can only keep five to eight digits in memory at once.

Yet, using a simple number system, World Memory Champions like Alex Mullen can memorize a deck of cards in seconds. Although he doesn’t use the Dominic System, I imagine Alex learned a lot from that approach, as can we all.

Memory athlete Alex Mullen

Memory athlete Alex Mullen


Now, you might be looking at the photo above and thinking… Alex is so young!

You’re right, but check out Lynne Kelly who wrote The Memory Code. She’s one of many mature members of our society who do very well in memory competition.

Lynne Kelly author of The Memory Code

Lynne Kelly, author of The Memory Code

Plus, please understand this important point:

This practice is not just about playing cards and numbers.

When I‘ve given memory demonstrations, I have memorized 20 to 30 names in only the amount of time it took to hear them.

Thus, the boundaries of what short-term memory is called in textbooks is not so strict, so rigid or so limited.

Now that you know that these memory feats come from specific kinds of brain training, it‘s worth repeating this simple fact:

You need a holistic, comprehensive memory training program, ideally one that leads to long-term memory benefits that offer you predictable recall.

How Comprehensive Memory Training Helps (Quickly)

In order to give you long term, predictable recall, the first step is to exercise your spatial memory.

This is where the Magnetic Memory Method and using a robust Memory Palace Network comes into play:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Next, we have elaborative encoding, which I call Magnetic Imagery (sometimes called mnemonic imagery). This mnemonic skill must be sharpened.

How do we become great at creating associations so we can remember more?

There’s no shortcut or quick-fix here. Daily, creative repetition is the key to building a strong foundation on which to build your short-term memory comprehensively.

If you take the time to create your Memory Palaces, then encode them with real and relevant information that is important to your life, you will be far ahead of the game.

Next, practice decoding, or Recall Rehearsal. Used inside a Memory Palace for a meaningful learning project, your short-term memory will be sharpened, improved and ready for use at the drop of a hat.

Step One:
Eliminate The Digital Brain Games

Can apps help improve your memory?

The short answer:

It‘s unlikely.

The longer answer:

Relegating your memory improvement to a device is only marginally beneficial. One of the former leading memory improvement software companies, Cogmed, promised big results with completion of problem-solving and training tasks.

Although some improvement occurred, there was no evidence these results were lasting. In this digital age there is still the need for real, human interaction. In other words, personal, one-on-one training, not artificial intelligence or a simulation, for real, durable results.

This is true for language learning as well. Sure, you may find that you can remember a list of vocabulary or read fluently in a second language with learning software, but true results and comprehensive fluency include conversation. This cannot be accomplished with software alone.

The general rule is to get off apps, not more into them. We are almost glued to our smartphones, immersed in virtual reality, out of touch with the real world. Why add one more notification or thing to be tended to for the computer in our pocket?

Turn off the TV and write a story. Don’t see yourself as an author? …Just try. Put pen to paper and don’t be afraid to suck.

By simply writing a short narrative, you will manage character names, locations and other details in your short-term memory. It’s very powerful.

Step Two:
Keep A Snapshot Journal

Do you remember the rant from Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl?

“Musicians should go to a yard sale and buy an old … drum set and get in their garage and… just suck. And get their friends to come in and they’ll suck, too. And then they’ll …. start playing and they’ll have the best times they’ve ever had in their lives and then all of a sudden they’ll become Nirvana.”

Great advice, but get this:

You don’t have to be a virtuoso to be a musician and benefit from mnemonics for music.

Likewise, you don’t have to be an author to write. When it comes to memory, all you have to do is record the things you enjoy about your life.

Original image of a 5 year snapshot journal

The Snapshot Journal I’m using

I’ve recently taken up using a Snapshot Journal, which lets you compare five years in the same diary on a single page.

Since writing is known to improve memory and I love the simple passive memory exercise of remembering a few things from the day before, I snapped one up and have used it daily ever since. It makes a difference.

As a tip, keep your Snapshot Journal open and in a high traffic part of your home. I keep mine by my desk and use it to list movies I‘ve seen, the livestreams I‘ve held and my accuracy with memorizing cards.

Flip back through the pages regularly and see if you can think of things to add.

Again, this is comprehensive memory training. It might not see to relate to short term memory, but by focusing in the present moment deep into your past memory, you are practicing the practice of linking focus and concentration together.

Like writing a bit of fiction, writing about your own life is one of the best and fastest ways to start remembering more in the short term. It improves this aspect of your memory for a simple reason:

Because it’s using it.

Step Three:
Read Daily From Print For Better Memory

Speaking of writing, reading is a great memory exercise.

How to Improve Focus And Concentration Anthony Metivier Walking While Reading

Walking and reading in Denmark

You retain your focus to comprehend what you’re reading. If you lose the details of what you just read, or you’re constantly having to go back and reread a few paragraphs, don’t fret or turn it into a problem. Simply read again with more purpose and intention. Over time, you can improve your short-term memory by focusing in this way.

And when you find your mind wandering, go with it! Instead of beating yourself up about it, go for a walk and pay attention to the world, untethered from all devices. Simply notice the world and the details of nature. Rest by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang Book Cover

This suggestion is just one of the many Alex Pang makes in Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less.

If you don‘t like to think of walking as a positive mind wandering generator, incorporate Recall Rehearsal into the journey. Take advantage of being unplugged to journey through your Memory Palaces as you walk.

Understand that real short-term memory is focused attention and meditation plus mindfulness and memory is true short term memory power.

And to get that focus going, you need to read on an old fashioned device that won’t interrupt you. It’s called a physical book.

If you don’t believe that reading on your phone or from Kindle is ruining your memory, read the facts from this piece on Digital Amnesia.

Step Four:

The Ultimate Memory Exercise for Short-Term Memory “Stretching” 

It’s easy and fun:

Get in the habit of memorizing names.

Not just the names of the people you meet. Also:

  • Authors
  • Musicians
  • Actors
  • Politicians
  • Doctors

Memorizing names is hugely powerful for three reasons.

1. You start consciously paying more attention to names.

This will improve your social skills and create a better first impression on others. (I’d say that’s a pretty great side effect.)

2. Everything you memorize is a name. Every foreign language word or number is effectively a name for an object or concept. If you can memorize names, you can memorize anything.

3. The rapid encoding of names is useful in translating your short-term efforts into long-term results. If you need some exercises, this short list will help you get the elaborative encoding you need right.

4. You can use the Memory Palace, sometimes called the Loci Method.

Why You Should Memorize Names In Private First

Start this as a private exercise before you attempt this rapid encoding and recall in public.

Go to Wikipedia and press the “random” button until you have a list of 10 names assembled. Or scroll through IMDB and review cast and crew lists of movies.

Or work with the names you already have in your memory. Try to recall lists of past Presidents, or famous composers or poets. The sky’s the limit, so get creative.

Once you’re feeling confident in your work in private, go semi-public. When you see workers with name-tags at the store, or office workers’ desk plaques, make a note of these names in your memory journal and test yourself.

Approached this way, you’re not stressing yourself out. There’s no stakes and you can always win.

When you quiz yourself and you remember a name, give yourself a pat on the back (or post on our memory improvement forum so our community can).

Or, if you’re having trouble with name recall and make a mistake, just treat it for what it really is: An opportunity for improvement. Seeing opportunity is what makes any perceived failure a win.

As you build this skill you’ll be able to eventually take this along as a fun little party trick (that’s also beneficial to your memory).

Anthony Metivier memorizing and recalling names at an NRG memory demonstration

Anthony Metivier memorizing and recalling names at a memory demonstration in Brisbane

As you meet people, commit their names to memory, then when goodbyes are being said you can announce:

“I memorized everybody’s name here. Would you like to see a fun demonstration?” then recall all the partygoers to everyone’s amazement.

Don’t limit yourself to just names though. You can use this same rapid encoding practice with memorizing prices at the store, playing cards, and, of course, your 00-99 configuration. Take the same principles of recall and use them across the board, as they are truly universal.

Step Five:

The Best and Most Practical Way to Practice Improving STM

Without question, the best and most practical way to improve short-term memory is memorizing names in real time, in public. There are endless opportunities for you to give yourself this kind of short term memory loss treatment:

  • (joining Meetup groups with like-minded people who share your interests in memory)
  • First day of school (memorize your classmates names)
  • Film credits in movies (test as soon as you get home with your date)
  • Discussions (memorize your “opponent’s” points during arguments so you can refer back to what they said and how they said it.)

As you engage in this exercise in real time you’re not only improving your memory, but human connection as well. You’re honoring the person you’re speaking with by truly paying attention, instead of having a distracted interaction.

Step Six:

Extended Exercises for Long-Term Memory Stretching

Translate this focused attention to the long term by shifting your focus. Instead of small pieces of information, like names, think of large projects that need your attention.

Try learning a foreign language. Use mnemonics to help you memorize both vocabulary and phrases.

Or learn to memorize scripture, poetry, quotes, speeches, and song lyrics.

Try “mixing and matching” this information for even greater benefits.

For example, your goal may be to become fluent in Spanish. Along with your learning of Spanish vocabulary you may memorize works from Spanish poets like Pablo Medina or Martin Espada. When you’re feeling burnout with memorizing poetry, work with your vocabulary and vice versa.

You can also learn to memorize numbers, and go on to number your Memory Palace Network. Anytime you want to increase the challenge, you can.

Step 7: Fix Your Lifestyle

Finally, check out these general memory tips that will help you with both your short and long-term memory.

We often overlook the obvious when it comes to memory wellness, which is tending to our overall wellbeing. I cannot underestimate the benefits of physical health to brain health. There have been numerous studies linking mind and body wellness, and therefore, when exercising our memory, we must remember to care for our bodies as well.


This means getting an adequate amount of sleep. Try sleeping without electronic devices in your bedroom and hold yourself to a “computer curfew.” You may be surprised at how much more restful your sleep truly is.


Evaluate your diet. Eat memory friendly foods and avoid those that destroy memory. If we’re truly honest with ourselves none of us eat as healthily as we should.

Image of memory boosting food blueberries

Blueberries are just one of several memory boosting foods

Our busy lives often lend themselves to convenience foods or fast foods, rather than true, whole foods that are nourishing to our bodies (and therefore our minds).


Also, socialize. Take opportunities to be with other people and often.

Speak with them.

Pay attention to them and what they’re saying, not only for the short-term memory benefits we discussed, but for yourself. If you’re truly engaged with others, that investment feels good. We crave that interaction as social creatures, so make it count.


Meditation is not only a proven way to improve your memory. It sharpens your concentration too.

When I meditate, I recite a lot of material, as well as focus on breathing and a few other exercises.

It is powerful because of the self-observation skills it creates. When you’re in the world, engaging with people and information overwhelm, that extra bit of awareness gives you an edge and you capture more information.

If you’re not a meditator yet, I suggest you give it a try a.s.a.p. and give it at least 4x a week over 3 months before you assess the results.

“Forget” Short-Term Memory 

I hope you’ve enjoyed these short term memory strategies for adults. Most of them will work for kids too, and all without any risky supplements.

In sum, if you want to improve short-term memory, you need to practice multiple levels of memory.

The best way to do that is to use comprehensive memory techniques daily. The Memory Palace technique is especially great because it helps you combine all the levels of memory in a streamlined manner. You might even start to experience something like flashbulb memory.

Remember not to get too hung up on the terminology of memory training. Learn it as you go.

Finding the balance between encoding and decoding makes it all simple.

And who knows, maybe your next batch of brownies won’t call for two trips to the corner market.

The post Improve Short Term Memory: 7 Easy Steps To Better Memory For Life appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Many people think you cannot improve short term memory. In truth, you can. In this podcast, I'll share 7 easy steps that will help you experience better memory for life as a result. Many people think you cannot improve short term memory. In truth, you can. In this podcast, I'll share 7 easy steps that will help you experience better memory for life as a result. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 38:46
An Abundance Of Powerful “Monkey Mind” Meditation Tips with Ben Fishel Thu, 02 May 2019 06:53:27 +0000 0 <p>Having control over your mind and experiencing peace of mind is possible. Ben Fishel joins me on the podcast to show you how - and it's obvious just how much mental quiet helps with memory techniques. Listen in!</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">An Abundance Of Powerful “Monkey Mind” Meditation Tips with Ben Fishel</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Portrait of Ben Fishel for the Magnetic Memory Method PodcastWe all deal with it. The never ending to-do lists, rushing here, there, and everywhere in our daily lives, like a hamster on a wheel.

From work, to school, family obligations, and social and extracurricular activities we never stop.

But it’s not just our physical bodies that are “all over the place.” It’s our minds as well. It’s like a “monkey mind” is running the show up there!

Unless, of course, you have some of the best monkey mind meditation tips out there.

The kind that show you the way to quiet the noise, perhaps even to silence this uncontrollable, restless mind that haunts our global civilization. 

Think about it…

What if you could exercise self-control mentally in order to make more rational decisions, your best decisions, calmly?

Good news:

You can.

On this episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast, I sit down with Ben Fishel, author of the upcoming book Project Monkey Mind.

Anthony Metivier with Ben Fishel of

Hanging out with Ben at my favorite Memory Palace, The Menagerie

Ben is a meditation teacher, habitual traveler, and freelance writer.

His blog, Project Monkey Mind, helps professionals boost their creativity and relax their minds. His work has been featured on The Huffington Post, HighExistence, Tiny Buddha, and Pick The Brain.

In this episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast, we discuss the problems of the modern day monkey mind and how, through meditation, self-inquiry and self-discovery you can take steps to quiet it.

Ben shares some principles from his soon-to-be released book, especially regarding his Pyramid of Self and the need for knowing one’s self to make a transformation in your life.

Until the book comes out, grab his 7 Hacks for Monkey Mind Calm Cheat Sheet.

Image of the Monkey Mind Meditation Hacks Cheat sheet from Ben Fishel

7 Hacks for “Monkey Mind Calm” Cheat Sheet


Having control over your mind is possible, peace of mind is possible, and mental clarity, calm, and focus are all within your reach. 

To learn how, all you have to do is scroll up, hit play and discover:

  • The difference between real change as compared to our expectations of change
  • Authentic self-help versus spirituality junk and the spiritual junkies it creates
  • The importance of self-inquiry to discover both who you are and who you aren’t
  • How a “hyper-egoic” consciousness due to social media can be detrimental to quieting the self-referential mind
  • The benefits of finding a balance between goals and the karma yoga idea of letting go of outcomes
  • Ben’s Pyramid of Self, a relationship between ego, narratives about yourself, your biology, and higher cause
  • How the ego can provide a false sense of being bulletproof, and the drawbacks to such an attitude
  • Why we should always be skeptical, or critical of gurus as the end all, be all to answering life’s big questions
  • The human condition of coping (or not) with uncertainties
  • How freedom and individual sovereignty are related and how to achieve them
  • How meditation brings a needed silence that doesn’t come to the body naturally

Our Second Monkey Mind Meditation Conversation:

Part One:

Part Two:



Further Resources on the Web, This Podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Ben’s guided meditations on InsightTimer

Ben’s YouTube Channel

Walking Meditation: 3 Memory Improving Ways to Walk Yourself Into Bliss

How to Improve Concentration and Memory Buddha Style

The Wise Advocate: Become A Better Leader of Your Memory

How to Stop Punishing Yourself When You Say Stupid Things

The post An Abundance Of Powerful “Monkey Mind” Meditation Tips with Ben Fishel appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Having control over your mind and experiencing peace of mind is possible. Ben Fishel joins me on the podcast to show you how - and it's obvious just how much mental quiet helps with memory techniques. Listen in! Having control over your mind and experiencing peace of mind is possible. Ben Fishel joins me on the podcast to show you how - and it's obvious just how much mental quiet helps with memory techniques. Listen in! Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:37:13
Katie Kermode On Memory Competition and Casual, Everyday Mnemonics Fri, 26 Apr 2019 01:32:10 +0000 2 <p>Katie Kermode, a memory champion and competitor from the United Kingdom, discusses her journey with memory competitions, memory training software and everyday mnemonics.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Katie Kermode On Memory Competition and Casual, Everyday Mnemonics</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Memory Competitor Katie Kermode with a desk of playing cardsDo you ever wonder how memory competitors get so good at their craft?

Do they have some secret method that the Average Joe can’t begin to comprehend?

Is there a memory secret society that’s only available to those who participate in the competition world that you and I would never be able to access?

Good news:

Memory competitors are just like you. They have their strengths, weakness, and, believe it or not, have the time to have a life outside of memory training!

On today’s episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast, I sit down with Katie Kermode, a memory champion and competitor from the United Kingdom, to discuss her memory journey.

Competing for over two decades, Katie is ranked 16th place in the world for memory competitors and is a four time memory world record holder.

Portrait of Memory Competitor Katie Kermode for the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast

She is also a professional translator and proofreader, memory coach, and is the creator of memorization and recall software used at the IAM World Memory Championships in 2018.

If you are struggling with finding the time to devote to memory training…

If names or dates elude you in information memorization…

Or if you think the end all, be all to strengthening your memory is a memory system just out of reach for the everyday memory improvement enthusiast…

This podcast is for you.

Click play above now and discover:

  • The “right” age to begin memory techniques with children and how to motivate them to use these techniques from a young age
  • How to make the most of limited time for memory training
  • Using natural association patterns to remember names
  • Variances in techniques from memory competitors to casual users of mnemonics (and why there is no singular approach to memory training that is “best”)
  • Having a memory system vs. memory principles to build your own method
  • The benefits of memory software for memorization and recall
  • How to revolutionize attitudes about memory training in the digital age (without developing Digital Amnesia)
  • Memorization in competitions versus real life application
  • The benefits of attaching information to people along a Memory Palace journey

Katie Kermode with memory competition awards and playing cards

Further Resources on the Web, This Podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Katie Kermode’s Official Website

Katie Kermode’s Twitter

Katie Kermode on Nelson Dellis’s Mind Show

The International Association of Memory

IAM on Facebook

Katie’s Memory Software

Next Level Memory Training Secrets with USA Memory Champion John Graham

Nelson Dellis on the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast (episode referenced in this one)

Idriz Zogaj’s Discussion on Memory Training Apps

Stats about Katie (Records and Memory Titles):

  • World Record in 5-minute Names (105)
  • World Record in 15-minute Names (224)
  • World Record in 15-minute Words (318)
  • World Record in Memory League Words (50 in 51.31 seconds)
  • MSO Memory Champion 2018
  • MSO Memory Champion 2017
  • UK Memory League Champion 2016
  • UK Memory Champion 2012

About Katie’s Software:

This memory training software features these competition formats:

  • National Standard
  • International Standard
  • World Championship Standard
  •  Includes free memory training across these memory disciplines:
    • numbers
    • names
    • 5 minute words
    • dates
    • cards
    • images
    • binary

The post Katie Kermode On Memory Competition and Casual, Everyday Mnemonics appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Katie Kermode, a memory champion and competitor from the United Kingdom, discusses her journey with memory competitions, memory training software and everyday mnemonics. Katie Kermode, a memory champion and competitor from the United Kingdom, discusses her journey with memory competitions, memory training software and everyday mnemonics. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 56:17
Flashbulb Memory: When, Why And How Vivid Recall Seizes Your Mind Thu, 18 Apr 2019 22:53:45 +0000 4 <p>Is your flashbulb memory as accurate as you think it is? Read this post now to find out more about this kind of memory, eidetic memory and memory exercise.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Flashbulb Memory: When, Why And How Vivid Recall Seizes Your Mind</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of a lightbulb to express how flashbulb memory relates to memory improvement trainingDo you have a “flashbulb memory“?

Here’s a simple memory test:

Do you remember where you were and what you were doing during the 9/11 attacks?

If so, in how much detail… exactly?

After all, 9/11 was one of the most mentally impacting world events millions of people not only remember. They remember it vividly.

What does vivid mean in this context?

For example, you might recall exactly what activity you were performing when you learned about the attack. Myself, I was in Stong College on the York University campus, just before a class.

It’s an irrelevant detail in the overall scope of my life, but the fact that I remember so much minutia is precisely the point.

For example, I was in the cafeteria reading that morning. My phone rang and my friend Andrew said, “Find a TV.”

I remember it vividly, down to the fact that my eyes traced the sky through the window and instantly fell upon an airplane.

But here’s the problem:

This memory I have about seeing an airplane through the window might not be accurate.

In fact, chances are that it’s a flashbulb memory. Just like the time I spent with Tony Buzan, which we’ll talk about in a minute.

But before we define this concept and talk about some powerful memory exercises, let’s look at the history of this term:

Flashbulb Memory Defined

The term flashbulb memory refers to a long lasting vivid memory of the circumstance around the time of receiving a shocking or surprising piece of news or event.

Coined as a metaphor in the 1970s, it refers to the feeling of mentally capturing a complete scene in a single moment.

But more than just feeling like you‘ve taken a mental snapshot, the idea is that your mental image includes a ton of information. I‘m talking about everything from the most crucial details to the most mundane ones.

Even more:

It’s the feeling that the memory will last indefinitely, almost as if it were a photograph.

These memories have intrigued memory researchers for decades. Some consider flashbulb memory as a kind of autobiographical memory, which is the recollection of events you have personally experienced.

Typically, individuals involved as subjects in memory studies feel extremely confident about their recollections of events like 9/11.

However, in reality, researchers find that flashbulb memories are mostly haphazard and incomplete.

Why? Because many factors affect your memory. These may include:

  • Shock
  • The personal importance you place on the event
  • Emotional states
  • Surrounding objects
  • People in the environment
  • Locations
  • Activities at the time

These factors and more condition the subsequent ways you might experience flashbulb memories.

Image of a woman with light zapping around her to express the rapid speed of encoding a new memory

Why People Encode Memories “In A Flash”

When your brain experiences something traumatic, it often establishes a sharp mental image of that particular event.

Keep in mind that “mental imagery” is not necessarily visual. Yet, many people do describe being able to re-envision detailed information. It’s almost as if their memory of an event is like photograph.

When you consider the kinds of things that become flashbulb memories, our brains usually base them on traumatic events.

More often than not, they are public events.

This tendency means that people around also us experienced the events. As a result, they wind up being discussed often.

You not only experience such events via television or on the Internet, but you re-experience them multiple times while talking about them in multiple places with multiple people.

Of course, not all such memories involve tragedy.

Some other examples of flashbulb memories might include the birth of your child, college graduation, or getting your first job. These events might stand out as monumental events or milestones in your life.

For example, meeting Tony Buzan is a personal example from the world of memory training.

The reason why is that I was so overwhelmed by many emotions, especially given the personal attention he paid to me.

But that doesn’t mean my memories of the time we spent together are accurate. Far from it!

A Quick and Simple Memory Exercise

Have you ever met someone famous who touched your life?

Go ahead and think it through.

Even if you just saw them from a distance, take note of the memory and describe it.

Then think more about the memory. Think about all the times you told the story to others. You’ll probably have experienced it multiple times.

When it comes to celebrity encounters and historical events, you almost always discuss them multiple times with different people in a variety of locations.

Anthony Metivier with Uwe Boll, Eddie Furlong and Dominic Purcell

I have another flashbulb memory from working with celebrities Dominic Purcell, Edward Furlong and director Uwe Boll

The conclusion is therefore simple:

If flashbulb memories like these have the tendency to last for life, it is because our sharing behaviors ingrain them in our minds.

The Truth About Flashbulb Memory

Aside from being referred as a type of autobiographical memory, many researchers now believe these memories are prone to many fallacies and errors.


As mentioned, our feelings, emotions, and multiple repetitions change the actual accounts of the events in memory.

As much as we would like to think that our memories regarding numerous events are accurate and foolproof, multiple studies show the opposite. We now know that flashbulb memories alter with time as we go through more life experiences.

As memory expert Stephen Kosslyn has shown in The Case for Mental Imagery, the locations of or memories also change location in the brain.

Therefore, recollections that might appear certain, vivid and clear have almost certainly been “tainted” by external occurrences and factors.

Don’t worry. As we’ll see, this fact is not necessarily a bad thing when it comes to memory improvement training.

Flashbulb Memory Vs. Eidetic Memory

Consider the following study:

Researchers asked 54 undergraduate students to record their memory regarding the 9/11 attacks.

They asked how and where participants learned about the attack, what were they doing and if they were with someone when they heard the news.

911 Image of a statue covered in debris for an eidetic memory test

This is not the “eidetic memory” image most people have of 9/11. What’s yours?

The scientists also asked about how clearly participants could envision their memories. They wanted to know just how certain people were about their recollections being accurate.

Next, they asked the participants the same questions about other memorable events.

Time Changes Your Memory!

Finally, the researchers compared how ordinary memories and flashbulb memories change over time.

To do this, they asked the same questions after one week, one month and then following seven months.

The researchers concluded that, while the ordinary memory and flashbulb memory were consistent for a week, the passing of time significantly reduced consistency.

Strangely, participants believed that their flashbulb memory was more accurate as compared to their ordinary memory.

In fact, some people even believed that they were experiencing eidetic memory (often called photographic memory).

Eidetic memory refers to an individual’s ability to vividly recall information from memory with minimal exposure and without using any mnemonic devices.

Whereas some people use the terms photographic memory and eidetic memory interchangeably, they can be distinguished.

Image of a smart phone taking a photo of a person with a camera to illustrate a concept in memory training

Eidetic memory is the ability to view an image for a few minutes and then recall it with detailed precision. Photographic memory on the other hand, is the mythical ability to recall text or numbers in great detail.

To be clear:

Eidetic memory seems to be real. Photographic memory, on the other hand, has not been found to actually exist, at least not in humans.

Moreover, while flashbulb memories are often inaccurate, some studies have found that eidetic memories can be accurate.

Can You Really Enhance Your Eidetic Memory?

Even though eidetic memory is rare among individuals, you can try to enhance it, or at least boost your overall memory through various memory improvement exercises. Here are the three main techniques that might help in enhancing your memory:

The Memory Palace

The Memory Palace is a mental recreation of a familiar building or place. The main aim of the Memory Palace is to assist your ability to retain important information by placing symbols in a sequence in that imaginary building. I call these symbols “Magnetic Imagery” and each image is built from the “Magnetic Modes.” There are many terms for the Memory Palace technique, ranging from:

  • Roman Room
  • Method of Loci
  • Journey Method
  • Mind Palace

…and many more that essentially describe “location-based mnemonics.” Overall, there are more similarities than differences, so please don‘t get hung up on the terminology.

As one of the greatest memory exercises ever invented, the Memory Palace lets you leave behind information you want to remember in specific areas of the mental building through a process of association.

For instance, you will use familiar rooms or objects you can easily link to the target information. The technique works because it transforms semantic information into a sequence of images, primarily by tapping into your episodic memory.

All of this happens while you also associate both the target information and the mental imagery to a physical location. In other words, you are tapping into spatial memory as well.

There are numerous Memory Palace exercises that can help you in boosting your memory. I suggest you experiment with as many as you can.

The Memory Peg

The Memory Peg technique is like the Memory Palace.  This technique includes a two-stage method.

Image of a peg to illustrate how the mnemonic peg system works

The first stage involves learning a standard set of peg words that are typically 10 number-rhyme pairs.

The second stage includes visualizing the information you want to remember and linking it with the rhyming word. Memory expert Bruno Furst was a major proponent of this technique.

Memory Boosting Brain Exercise

These exercises can potentially help in improving your eidetic memory. Or you can try following these steps:

  • Closing your eyes and imagine that you are looking at a famous painting. It might be the Mona Lisa or Girl with the Pearl Earring.
  • Focus on what happens in your mind when you imagine this painting.
    • Ask yourself: Do you really need to picture every small detail to get a clear impression? In most of the memory training exercises, visualization is actually not necessary.
  • Next, I want you to shift gears.  Focus on the last conversation you held with someone.
  • Start filling in the details of that conversation in your mind. Think of the phrases you used, the words, the features of that person, as well as the location and any other details you can bring to mind.
  • Observe how your memory works and changes as you complete the exercise.
  • Perform this same exercise with a piece of music.

You will soon realize that the whole notion of eidetic memory really doesn’t matter. Nor should attaining an eidetic memory definition be your goal.

What matters most is that you exercise your recall abilities and explore what “vivid memory” means to you. You don’t need eidetic memory or anything else if you just focus on exercising your memory as you experience it.

Memory expert Gary Small has even more memory tips that will help you prove it for yourself. Or you can just get this free memory course:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Context Is The Key

In sum, flashbulb memories are usually tied to monumental events and historical milestones. But these aren’t what create them. They are generally created when events come loaded with a certain emotional or personal link that leads to multiple exposures over time.

This combination of events plus repetition in multiple contexts makes them stand out from the mundane features of everyday life. Flashbulb memory has as much to do with your perception of the world and your social setting following events as it does with memory.

For example, if I had met Tony Buzan, but had no interest in memory or people to speak about memory week after week, it is quite likely that I would not experience a flashbulb memory every time I hear his name.

The depth of memory comes from multiple contexts that naturally involve repetition. And the emotional nature of the meeting must be kept in mind when thinking about how accurate I remember it. Luckily, I kept in touch with Tony via and was honored to review his book, Mind Map Mastery.

If you want to keep accurate details of the major events and milestones of your life, try this:

Instead of focusing on forming eidetic memory or photographic memory, take up the memory exercises we teach on the Magnetic Memory Method blog, vlog and podcast.

Doing so will increase the likelihood of enjoying a more accurate memory that helps you easily recall more information throughout your life. All without worrying when your memory has altered with passing of time.

It will, and that’s not a bad thing at all.

The post Flashbulb Memory: When, Why And How Vivid Recall Seizes Your Mind appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Is your flashbulb memory as accurate as you think it is? Read this post now to find out more about this kind of memory, eidetic memory and memory exercise. Is your flashbulb memory as accurate as you think it is? Read this post now to find out more about this kind of memory, eidetic memory and memory exercise. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 33:09
The Dominic System: What It Is And Why People Love It Thu, 11 Apr 2019 07:00:17 +0000 10 <p>Do you face problems remembering a series of numbers? Learn to use the Dominic System to train your mind and easily memorize longer numeric sequences. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">The Dominic System: What It Is And Why People Love It</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Dominc O'Brien Creator of the Dominic System Feature Image on Magnetic Memory Method BlogDominic O’Brien suffered from ADD and dyslexia.

But that didn’t stop him from winning the World Memory Championships… not once but eight times.

Memory accomplishments like these are not very common!

Even less common is going on to develop a memory system that changes the entire world.

Where does this ingenious system come from?

O’Brien developed the Dominic System after getting inspired by watching Creighton Carvello memorize a card deck on television.

O’Brien’s innovative mnemonic system has since become popular because of how it allows people to utilize their minds for accomplishing outstanding feats.

As a result, O’Brien is considered one of the world’s foremost memory experts. He has been reaching individuals, and helping them utilize their memories through his various books and training programs, for decades.

What is the Dominic System?

A mnemonic system, the Dominic System is utilized for remembering sequences of numbers that are similar to the mnemonic major system.

O’Brien built his approach on a core arrangement we usually call the Major System. You’ll learn more about that in a minute.

All such systems work by helping people associate numbers with something else. And a core innovation Dominic O’Brien brought to the game was focusing on individuals in place of objects. He changed this focus because individuals are much easier to remember than objects.

In this system, sometimes called “Hotel Dominic,” the mnemonist (i.e. you) converts numbers into letters. These letters are utilized to create people’s initials. Each individual’s name is then linked to an action.

How is it Different from the Major System?

The Major System is usually ideal for basing words on numbers linked to consonants. Like this:

Major System on the Magnetic Memory Method

For instance, the number 12 might be ‘tin’, which is harder to remember than ‘Al Bundy’. The number 84 could be ‘fire’ which means the sequence 1284 would mean ‘a tin on fire’.

Of course, one perceived weakness of the Major is that it only lets you encode two-digit numbers.

This is actually not a problem. For example, you can combine the Major with a number shape system, as I’ve done here with 358:

Major System Illustration of Mailman Shoving Envelopes Into A Snowman

A Major System Mnemonic Example for the number 358

In this example, a famous mailman is shoving the mail into a snowman. (In the Major, 35 suggests the word “mail” and 8 looks like a snowman.)

Notice that I am using a very specific mailman. (Let me know in the comments if you recognize him.)


Because the brain is much more likely to react to the increased level of specificity. That’s why I suggest you always selecting characters to link with a number on the basis of familiarity no matter what system you use.

Is It Worth The Time?

True, covering 00–99 with familiar characters and names will require effort and time.

But it will be worth it! Having any kind of system will help you save the struggle and time in the future when you want to remember a sequence of numbers. Numbers like:

  • Bank accounts
  • Credit card numbers
  • Insurance numbers
  • Birthdates of family members
  • Emergency numbers
  • Numbers involved in programming
  • Historical dates
  • Applications in memorizing music
  • Tools for learning numbers in foreign languages with greater ease

Simply put, it only makes sense to learn a number system.

But it’s worth repeating:

Be specific.

The mnemonic imagery of many beginners can be bland and abstract.

Avoid this mistake.

Boring imagery makes it too complex to exaggerate. That’s the major reason people struggle.

Why is such imagery so difficult?

The answer is simple:

It is not easy to associate an abstract idea with a vague image in a sequence. (Unless you have these visualization exercises.)

For instance “a pen fights with a bottle” will never be as memorable as “Thor fights with George Bush.”

Mnemonic Example of the Dominic System with Thor and George Bush

When utilizing specific individuals, your brain has the ability to visualize them in a more effective way. You can further enhance your ability of getting a mental image with the memory systems by performing visualization exercises.

The emphasis O’Brien placed on being specific when selecting the character has helped many people. memorize longer sequences of numbers.

However, this point is important:

This Is A P.A. System, Not A P.A.O. (Person Action Object) System

The Dominic System is a Person-Action system. If you want to learn a full P.A.O. please watch this video about creating your first P.A.O. list:

How Does The Dominic System Work?

In the Dominic system, you have to break long numbers into two digits. Each pair of digits represents an individual doing a certain action. The numbers are converted into letters for number by utilizing the rules mentioned below for easy remembrance:

  • The digit 0 is O
  • Initial five digits (1 – 5) become the initial five alphabets (A –E)
  • The digit 6 is S due to similar sounds
  • The digits 7 and 8 becomes G and H
  • The digit 9 becomes N due to similar sounds

With a little effort, you will be able to learn these substitutions, making it easier to learn this system. Here it is visualized

The Dominic System Visualized on a Graph

When you memorize this table, go on to learn the next step.

Determining Names for Digit Pairs

Start by noting down the numbers from 0 all the way to 99. Review all these numbers and mentally translate them into Dominic letters. Notice if any initials are suggesting anything. For instance, the digits 20 become BO. It might suggest a Buddhist meditating under a Bo tree. It might suggest something else to you.

Typically, the pairs have no associations or meetings. However, there are some exceptions.

For example, 07 can be associated with James Bond, 13 can be associated with bad luck, 100 can be associated with a century, 16 can be associated with sweet sixteenth birthday, and so on.

Always utilize whatever the first link is formed in your mind when you look at the pairs as this will be the most effective way to continue this system.

Assigning Actions to Names

The character you select must also have an associated action, which is unique throughout your list of 100 names. Therefore, if you have utilized Serena Williams for 60 then avoiding using Andre Agassi for 11. Since for both you will associate playing tennis as an action.

The Dominic system distinguishes actions from characters in order to remember longer numbers. Therefore, the action you select must be “performable” by other selected characters. Therefore, select the actions that are obvious and distinctive for an individual.

How Do You Make This Memory System Work?

In order to make this system work for you, it is best to create the list of names with a mixture of celebrities, your friends and family members.

There would be certain letters that will give obvious solutions. For instance “Ho” suggests Santa Claus riding his sleigh.

If you get stuck thinking of characters and associated actions, you can look at sample lists for ideas.

However, keep in mind that it is better to create your own names and associations. Copying someone else’s list would be difficult for you to remember, unless the list includes famous characters and associated actions that you are pretty familiar with.

Here is a list of possible characters you could create using this technique:

  • 00 (Olive Oyl) – going on a date with Popeye
  • 22 (Bugs Bunny) – stealing a carrot
  • 86 (Hans Solo) – on his spacecraft

You can assign names to each digit and then associate a relatable action to help you remember.

For more, check out the 3 Most Powerful Memory Techniques for Memorizing Numbers.

Memorizing Two Digits

So, if you want to remember the house number of your friend which is 86, all you have to do is imagine Hans Solo piloting his spacecraft to your friend’s apartment’s roof. It crashes on the roof or laser cannons are being shot to save the people from an alien invasion. This will make it rather easy for you to remember the house number.

Memorizing Three Digits

You can easily memorize three digits by linking the image you have created for the initial two digits with the shape or rhyme of the third digit. For instance, 244 could be something like Bugs Bunny stealing a carrot.

For the action, Bug could be running away using two “dingy” style boats (one under each foot). Just imagine the glee on Bugs Bunny’s face as he successfully sails his boat with a carrot in his mouth.

Memorizing Four Digits

You can memorize four digits by simply splitting the numbers in pairs. Utilize the image of the character you have assigned to the first digit with the associated action for the second digit. For instance, if you want to memorize the sequence 8042 (Santa Clause) and (David Beckham), you can picture Santa Clause trying to help David Beckham score the winning goal!

Memorizing Longer Numbers

Memorizing longer numbers is easy too since you can simply break them down into pairs and a single digit, if any is left over. You can utilize a sequence of a character, associated action, character action, and then form a story through these images in mind.

For instance, you want to remember a café’s phone number 68221656. There here: 68 will be Sherlock Holmes, 22 (action) will be Olive Oyl (dating), 16 will be Arnold Schwarzenegger, and 56 (action) will be Scissorhands (cutting bushes).

You can now form a story with these images that can be linked to the phone number of the café. For instance, Sherlock Holmes is sitting in a restaurant dating Olive Oyl and Arnold Schwarzenegger enters the café with Edward Scissorhands and starts cutting off the plants in the café.

Who wouldn’t remember such a story?

Pitfalls You Must Avoid

Believe it or not, people search the internet for a Dominic system generator.

But that’s not the real skill here.

The skill is to use the system to match what you already have in your memory with a phonetic number system that allows you to translate numbers into letters.

Put in the work and you will receive the benefits. Otherwise, you risk deskilling your creativity and locking yourself outside of the very same skill you’re trying to develop.

Dominic O'Brien with a deck of playing cards

Dominic O’Brien about to memorize a deck of playing cards

Memorizing a Deck of Cards

While the Dominic system is utilized to memorize longer numbers, you can also use it for remembering other sequences like deck of cards.

This works by systematically associating numbers with cards.

For instance, if you associate the nine of clubs with 39 then you can associate Chuck Norris (3+9) in a story where he is using 9♣ in an active way.

This is definitely a powerful memory technique that you can use to your advantage if you have any of these 13 reasons to memorize cards.

But of course, you will have to invest a good deal of time and effort to prepare the sequence beforehand to fully benefit from the Dominic system.

It might be the right memory system for you, however, so get some training materials and learn how to complete a memory course with these tips.

Can You Use “Hotel Dominic” with a Memory Palace?


Imagine that every Magnetic Station in your Memory Palace has a number.

That number would be your character based on the alphanumeric system.

For example, on Magnetic Station 22 in a Memory Palace, you could place Bugs Bunny, or perhaps B.B. King. He would be another great example of a figure you could use with this system:

Mnemonic Example of B B King for 22 in Hotel Dominic

Mnemonic Example of B. B. King for 22 in Hotel Dominic

As you can see, it’s a simple matter to place any figure on any numbered station in a Memory Palace.

Why set up a Memory Palace in this way?

Although it might not always be worth the effort, it essentially combines linking with space, creating a double-whammy when you need to memorize a list.

Don’t know how to create a Memory Palace? Let me help you out:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

Obviously, adding characters based on numbers to each Magnetic Station in a Memory Palace is an intermediate-advanced memory skill.

But why not start building up to that level of proficiency now?

And it’s not just about Memory Palace deployment. You can also link your characters to mind maps as well.

Should You Use The Dominic System or The Major System?

Now that you know the difference, you have more insight that will help you choose.

But, at the end of the day, it’s entirely up to you.

I personally find the Major a more direct method of creating relationships between numbers and letters that leads to more solid word and image creation.

Yet, I’ve heard from many people who absolutely love the Dominic System. Some people are even able to use O’Brien’s images without creating any of their own. David Thomas is one example I’ve heard from. He broke the Guinness World Record for memorizing Pi in 1998 (22,500 digits) using “Hotel Dominic” virtually unchanged.

That is not only utterly amazing.

It’s also a demonstration of just how powerful O’Brien’s contribution to the art, craft and science of memory improvement this number memorization system has been.


Recommended Readings

O’Brien, Dominic. (1994). How to Develop a Perfect Memory. Trafalgar Square

O’Brien, Dominic. (2000). Learn to Remember : Practical Techniques and Exercises to Improve Your Memory. Chronicle Books

O’Brien, Dominic. (2003). How to pass exams. England: Duncan Baird Publishers.

O’Brien, Dominic. (2014). How to Develop a Brilliant Memory Week by Week: 50 Proven Ways to Enhance Your Memory Skills. Watkins Publishing

O’Brien, Dominic. (2016). You Can Have an Amazing Memory: Learn Life-Changing Techniques and Tips from the Memory Maestro. Watkins Publishing

The post The Dominic System: What It Is And Why People Love It appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Do you face problems remembering a series of numbers? Learn to use the Dominic System to train your mind and easily memorize longer numeric sequences. Do you face problems remembering a series of numbers? Learn to use the Dominic System to train your mind and easily memorize longer numeric sequences. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 26:26
How to Rapidly Complete A Memory Course: Tips And Guidelines Thu, 04 Apr 2019 02:21:43 +0000 6 <p>Taking a memory course can be daunting. Read this post for tips on how to complete a memory training course quickly (or any course you need to learn from).</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">How to Rapidly Complete A Memory Course: Tips And Guidelines</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> How to Rapidly Complete A Memory Course MMM Blog Feature Image of Anthony Metivier on iPhoneEver signed up for a memory course or read a memory improvement book and thrown your hands up in the air?

If so, that frustration ends today. You’re about to learn some simple guidelines for completing and benefiting from any memory training course you take.

I’ll show you how to cross any barriers or obstacles you encounter along the way too.

What kind of barriers?

How about the ugly situation where someone takes many classes and loses their notes on a computer?

I’ll share that story with you in a moment.


I’ll show you how to never lose your precious notes from the courses you take again – a hard learned lesson I hope no one ever has to suffer!

But first…

You Deserve A Big Compliment!

Let me pay you a compliment and congratulate your for your interest in completing a memory improvement course.

In fact, I’d like to pay you that compliment in person with this video:

Why the compliment?


Not everyone is so considerate to the long-term health of their brain, nor the short-term benefits that come from learning how to train your memory.

These benefits include more than just remembering information and having more “memory power,” after all.

You’ll also experience:

  • Enhanced focus and concentration
  • Mental clarity
  • Improved confidence
  • Boosts in your professional competence
  • Improved emotional control
  • Increased critical thinking skills

And that’s just for starters.

The Key Reasons People Do Not Complete The Courses They Begin

The question is…

How are you going to get yourself to complete the course? From beginning to end? And why do you need to complete the course in such detail?

These are important questions, and luckily there are answers.

First, let’s understand the key reasons people do not complete courses.

It’s rarely a lack of discipline or a problem with the courses.

In fact, the first problem usually comes from the fact that people want to instantly have the skills they hope to acquire.

And when they see that there’s still some distance to go between wanting the memory skills and having them, the brain can feel overwhelmed.

The Brain Pain Secret Behind Failing To Complete Courses

According to learning and memory expert Barbara Oakley in Mindshift, the insular cortex of the brain fires off a pain signal.

It’s possible the brain creates a pain response to the sight of anything that requires effort to cause you to preserve energy.

We don’t know exactly why our brains do this, but the Savanna Hypothesis would suggest that we are evolutionarily designed to preserve energy for when we need to quickly move for survival.

This would explain why pain is usually only a motivator when we’re suffering so much we have no choice but to take action.

But when the pain subsides by doing nothing, we’re instantly satisfied with the return to a state of no pain.

How to Deal With Overwhelm

Now, it might be hard to understand why what I’ve just said can help you complete a memory training course.

But here’s the thing:

Knowledge truly is power.

And the reason I include relaxation training in all of my memory courses is because I once felt that pain too.

Fortunately, I knew about the body’s propensity to create pain and the Savanna Hypothesis.

This insight into why the brain makes things that should be so simple seem so difficult has helped me immensely in many areas of life.

So the first thing you should do is learn to first recognize when a learning task has triggered overwhelm.

Then learn to associate that overwhelm with relaxation. I suggest meditation, which also improves focus and concentration.

How the Internet Has Corroded Our Ability To Learn

Second, it’s important to understand that the Internet has changed how we look at information.

Whereas we once appreciated the structure of books that a variety of thinkers innovated over hundreds of years, now we scroll and swipe through content.

These behaviors have changed how we perceive content and created something called “dual path readership.”

This term means that we’re often grazing through content. That’s absolutely no way to help us improve our focus and concentration whatsoever!

The Internet has created many genius innovations that help us quickly perceive what an article is about, but at the cost of making it difficult for our eyes to focus on what used to be normal paragraphs. Now we call them “walls of text.”

Likewise with videos.

Illustration of man with brain on fire to illustrate digital amnesia

Anything over ten minutes seems like an eternity.

Worse, we’ve often trained ourselves to watch videos at 2x speed while we have 32 other tabs open and are engaged in other activities, often on other devices.

It’s not uncommon for people to also have a smart phone or tablet beside their laptop while both of them chime and draw our attention away from the training that will help us the most.

This learning environment creates Digital Amnesia.

Why The “Hunter-Gatherer” Impulse Is Ruining Our Brains

Finally, it’s important to realize that the Internet has switched on our the gatherer part of our “hunter-gatherer” nature. We scour the net and bookmark information or download PDFs we’ll read later.

All too often, later never comes because we’re already off gathering a bunch of resources for the next subject we want to learn about. The promises of hypertext that are still truly rewarding and powerful have also become the enemy.

So, given this “new normal,” what do we as learners of memory courses do?

We’re going to protect our schedule, shield ourselves from interruptions of all kinds and use a bit of ancient technology to help guide our path.

And as soon as you know how to do these things, I want you to register for this:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

How To Protect Your Schedule When Completing A Memory Course

Let’s talk about protecting your schedule first.

This practice is quite easy.

Count the time

If you enter a video course, first count all the videos. You can either estimate or count the minutes required for all the videos and add them up.

You now have a picture of how much time you need to go through the content.

Plan of attack

Next, if you want to memorize information fast, design a plan of attack.

For example, if the video course amounts to an hour, get out your calendar and plan out 4, 15 minute viewing sessions.

If it’s 6 hours, figure out how you can get through the content over a week in short blasts of time that are right for you.

Scale back

As a pro tip, whatever you think you can handle, scale back by five minutes or so. If you think you can sit and watch a video without interruption for 20 minutes, scale back to fifteen minutes.

I make this suggestion because many people overestimate their discipline.

They often underestimate it too, and I personally find that this technique makes sure I’m more or less in the middle of what is the true amount of time I can sit through a video course.

Being realistic is one of your best weapons when it comes to organizing your time.

After that, it only makes sense to go through a course from beginning to end without skipping around. We’ll talk more about how to do this in just a bit.

How To Shield Yourself From Distractions

Next, you’ve got to shield yourself from distractions.

First, you have the environmental distractions of where you watch your memory training courses.

If there are people moving around and making noise, you won’t be able to concentrate.

Perhaps you can get away with watching video courses in a cafe, but I’ve always preferred a quiet corner of a library.

The human traffic is minimal and it makes it easy to take quick breaks by looking at interesting books or just gazing out the window for a while.

Why You Must Turn Off The Competing Devices

Second, you have the distractions of your devices.

Personally, I like to leave my smart phone at home.

I can’t always do it depending on how I might need to connect with my wife, but usually she’ll know where to find me and those sessions without being tethered to technology are pure bliss.

Not only will no one be able to interrupt me via the phone. I won’t be able to interrupt myself because there is no device to look at.

Browser tabs are a bit trickier when watching an online memory course.

But you can still close all of your tabs and have just the one needed for your course open.

I love a Chrome extension called OneTab for rapidly funneling all of my tabs into a single tab for opening again later when a project requires me to have a bunch of them open.

How to Guide Your Own Path Through An Online Memory Course

Third, you need to guide your path through the course.

I use an ancient device called a “notebook” for note-taking.

And it’s very simple to open up to a fresh page and write down the words “video one.”

Underneath that heading, jot down the notes pertaining to that video before moving on to “video two.”

I know this is painfully obvious and complete common sense. But I’m making the suggestion precisely because common sense just isn’t that common.

My Top Secret Video Course Index Card Method

The great thing about this note taking strategy is that it helps you keep track of where you are in the course in a linear format and look back through your notes in the order of the videos you watched.

I don’t always use this technique, however. Sometimes I will use index cards.

For the notes pertaining to video one, I will place “V1” in the bottom right corner. Then for all the cards pertaining to video 2, I’ll put “V2” and so on.

Like this:

Example Index card with notes from completing a memory course

This course-taking technique is useful for two purposes.

First, if I want to memorize anything from the course, it’s easy to flip quickly through the cards and pull out just the ones with information I want to memorize.

The index cards can then be placed in a logical order or order of preference for any number of reasons and corresponded with Magnetic Stations in a Memory Palace.

Secondly, if I later want to write an article, I can likewise pull out whichever cards I might like to refer to in the article.

In both cases, it’s an easy matter to reassemble the cards according to the video they belong to because they’ve all been marked.

And if you’re worried that you’ve lost the exact order in which you took the notes, don’t be.

You can always add another digit, such as “V1.1” to indicate that a card belongs to video one and is the first note you took from that video.

Likewise, “V2.7” would indicate the seventh note you took from the second video.

The Amazing Re-Assembled Note Taking Trick

In this way, you’ll easily be able to reassemble your notes. And in case you’re wondering, yes I do this and it is in fact exactly how I researched my dissertation, multiple scholarly articles and many of my books.

And to keep the individual books and video courses I took notes on cards together, I stored them in individual ziplock baggies and then arranged these inside of shoe boxes.

Super low tech and kind of nerdy, I know.

But back when I wrote my dissertation, backing up your computer wasn’t so easy and there was no such thing as “cloud computing” (at least not to my knowledge).

The Horrible Grad Student Story You Don’t Want To Experience

More than once, I saw my fellow graduate students lose hundreds of hours of work because they had pumped their notes into computers they didn’t back up on floppy disks and they had to start again.

One person I recall even dropped out of the doctoral program altogether because the devastation of starting over again was just too much to handle.

That tragic story aside, the point here is to give your mind something to do while focusing on the memory course and have a powerful means of revisiting your notes.

Plus, by handwriting your notes, you’ll get several additional learning benefits.

As Gary Dean Underwood, one of our cherished MMM Mastermind members recently noted:

Gary Dean Underwood Magnetic Memory Method Testimonial on Why Note Taking Helps Him Complete the Memory Course

The same principle applies to any memory course you take, and indeed any training you might invest time, money and energy into completing.

Focus Is The Key

So what do you say?

Do you think these simple recommendations might help you dive into a course and complete it over a few days or less?

Myself, I had to learn these tactics and strategies through a ton of trial and error. Like everyone else, I love shortcuts and anything that lets me skip to the head of the line.

But I learned long ago when watching how my fellow university students struggled with their books that the shortcut is often just buckling down and getting the reading done.

It never takes nearly as long as one thinks, and it’s really the bouncing around from one thing to the next that takes up most of the time.

Focus, my friends, and understand how and why focus falls apart. Knowledge truly is power, but only when it’s applied.

You really cannot afford to not finish the courses you start, so let me know if this helped you and keep the conversation going below.

The post How to Rapidly Complete A Memory Course: Tips And Guidelines appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Taking a memory course can be daunting. Read this post for tips on how to complete a memory training course quickly (or any course you need to learn from). Taking a memory course can be daunting. Read this post for tips on how to complete a memory training course quickly (or any course you need to learn from). Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 30:36
How to Memorize Scripture And Verse Numbers In 5 Minutes Or Less Fri, 29 Mar 2019 02:05:07 +0000 33 <p>You can learn how to memorize scripture and verse numbers fast. The steps are easy, fun and fast. Learn how to memorize verses now.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">How to Memorize Scripture And Verse Numbers In 5 Minutes Or Less</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Image of book to illustrate the How to Memorize Scripture MMM Blog PostNeed help memorizing scripture and want an easy and fast way to do it?

You’re in the right place.

On this page, you’ll learn how to memorize scripture quickly and make it stick for the long-term.

All by spending no more than 5 minutes per day.


You’ll learn to create a robust Memory Palace Network to do all the heavy lifting.

You’ll also learn how to create effective associations to use within your Memory Palaces. This “Magnetic Imagery” will pop any verse back into your mind almost instantly.

You’ll next learn how to follow-up for long-term recall and the bad memory habits you must avoid.

Are you ready?

Great – let’s go!

Why Memorize Scripture?

Before getting started with your strategy for memorizing scripture, it will be helpful to put some thought into why you’re doing it.

Here are some reasons:

  1. Memorizing scripture creates an internal source of inspiration
  2. By having scripture memorized, you will feel closer to your traditions
  3. Memorizing even just one more verse can make you feel incredibly closer to your source
  4. Deeply internalized knowledge can help heal spiritual wounds
  5. Having scripture memorized potentially makes you a better contributor to your community

Experiencing even more benefits is guaranteed, such as an increased ability to interpret and explain scripture.

Please post any additional reason you can think of in the comment section below.

What To Do Before Memorizing A Single Verse

Once you know why you’re embarking on a scripture memorization journey, it’s important to plan.

Your plan should include:

  • A Memory Palace Network
  • Practice time
  • An arrangement of the material you plan to memorize on your first outing

If you’re missing any of these essential ingredients, you likely won’t experience the outcome you seek.

For finding practice time, follow my P.E.A.C.H. formula (practice encoding at calm hours):

The Memory Palace Network for Scripture and Verse Numbers

Think you can memorize a ton of scripture without a Memory Palace Network?

Many people do.

Others think it can be done with just one Memory Palace.

But without several in play, success is highly unlikely.

The truth is that your brain is going to be challenged.

The best way to manage that challenge is the Memory Palace technique.

How does the Memory Palace technique help with that?


By reducing the cognitive load. It’s like having a canvas to paint on, instead of trying to paint on thin air. Do that and you risk having your colors splash on the ground in a mess.

What Is A Memory Palace?

A Memory Palace is a scientific tool used for transmitting any kind of information into long term memory as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Unfortunately, few teach this ancient mental tool in this way, which is sad. More people will get better results when someone just tells them the simple truth.

Here it is laid out in the form of a simple free memory course:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

What To Do During Scripture Memorization

Once you know how to create a Memory Palace Network and have it in place, it’s time to learn how to associate words and phrases with locations.

The course covers everything in detail, but as a quick example, let’s use these wise words:

Proverbs 18:13 (NIV): “To answer before listening — that is folly and shame.”

How to memorize the book and chapter will be covered later. For now, let’s focus on the verse itself.

Focus on the words themselves

Personally, I’m a quick study. As a result, I usually I don’t spend a bunch of time on the meaning of a passage. That comes after I’ve memorized it.

However, you might benefit from understanding the meaning first, If that’s you, be sure to reflect before you start memorizing the exact words.

Next, sort out the keywords. In our example verse, they are:

  • Answer
  • Listening
  • Folly
  • Shame

If I may explain the process from example, here’s what I did next:

I asked myself…

Who do I know who relates most closely to either the form of the verse or its meaning.

My friend’s sister Andi comes to mind.

In a Memory Palace, it’s easy to see her typing out an email. Like this:

Mnemonic example of memorizing scripture from Proverbs 18:13

What kind of email?

An email in response to an episode of Faulty Towers she’s just seen on television. She does this before she even heard the end of the sentence that offended her, and as a result, feels ashamed.

Why Faulty Towers?

Because it has a sound similar to “folly” in it. Note that I thought of and chose Andi as my “Bridging Figure” for this verse because I was focusing on the first word “answer.”

The “an” in Andi and the “an” in answer “magnetically” attract each other. Weave these associations together in a Memory Palace and one will “trigger” the other.

By looking for natural parallels that are already in your memory and imagination, you can often come across just the right set of images. This happens much more quickly than if you try to create abstract associations.

Abstractions in your associations must be avoided as much as possible.

They’re difficult to recall, create weak associations and cause more frustration than they’re worth.

How To Memorize All Those Little Connecting Words

Now, I know what you’re thinking.

What about “to,” “before,” and “is”?

Before you spend time memorizing them, stop and think it through.

Do you really need to memorize them? Or can you allow your mind to fill in the blanks?

In my experience, most people do fine with letting their mind fill in the blanks, provided they follow the rest of the steps on this page.

But if you need to come up with associations for all these little words, I suggest you consider creating a “stockpile.”

If you use a tutu for “to,” always use that same association.

If you use a bee driving a forklift for “before,” always use that every time you need this word.

Don’t worry. It’s unlikely that your mind will mind the repetition. The Memory Palace will provide more than enough differentiation.

The important point is that you’re drawing upon information, ideas, people and objects already in your memory.

That’s where the real memory magic happens. And sadly, this is a point that is too often missed by many memory experts who otherwise mean well.

For Bible Memorizers Who Want To Remember Chapter and Verse

Now, you might be a person memorizing the Bible and wonder about memorizing book, chapter and verse.

In general, I suggest that you have one Memory Palace Network per book.

So if you’re working on the Proverbs, have a Memory Palace Network just for that purpose.

This way, you’ll never have to wonder what your MP Network is for – it will always be clear to you.

Next, you’ll want to develop skills with a simple technique for memorizing any number. It’s called the Major Method or the Major System.

For more help with memorizing numbers, you can also learn the 3 Most Powerful Memory Techniques For Memorizing Numbers.

Mnemonic Examples For Verse Numbers

Once you’ve understood this technique, it will be simple to create little associations to precede the associations you use for the verses themselves.

Have a look at this:

A mnemonic example for memorizing verse numbers

For Proverbs 18:13, for example, I see a large TV set that I actually owned vacuuming J Edgar Hoover using a Hoover vacuum.

Weird and memorizable, right? It is!

But why these images?

Because 18 for me is always represented by a few things, one of which is a TV set.

Not just any TV set, but a particular TV set that has meaning for me.

And when you know the Major Method, you’ll know that there’s a very good reason that it’s a TV and not some other object.

Likewise with J Edgar Hoover with a Hoover vacuum.

It represents 13 because I’m following this simple chart:

Major System on the Magnetic Memory Method

Sometimes for 13, I see Hoover vacuuming on the Hoover Dam. There’s actually a way to make that dam a Virtual Memory Palace that I’ll talk about in the future. For now, here are 5 Memory Palace Examples you can learn about to enhance your practice.

In any case, having multiple images to draw upon is the Magnetic Memory Method Principle of Compounding. It’s part of the joyful science of creating and using a “Magnetic 00-99 P.A.O.” Learn more in the MMM course on memorizing math, equations and all things related to numbers.

I know that this process might sound complex.

It really isn’t once you get into it. After all, as Jeannie Koh explains in her Magnetic Memory Method Testimonial, using these techniques helped her reach her goals immensely:

Jeannie Koh Testimonial about memorizing scripture in Greek

And it’s a skill worth having for more than just memorizing verse numbers. It makes committing all numbers fast, easy, effective and fun.

What matters most is that you associate everything with information that already exists in your mind and that is meaningful to you.

Following Up: What To Do After Your Memorize Scripture Verses

Now comes the fun part.

What you want to do is mentally walk through your Memory Palaces one at a time.

Do this as many times as it takes to recall the verses accurately. Be sure to recall them both verbally and in written form. There are a few more tips on this practice below.

How many times exactly is a question no one can answer. At least 5 times the first day and then 1 time per day for a few weeks is a good rule of thumb derived from Dominic O’Brien.

As you develop your skills, you’ll find that different verses enter your memory at different rates and each presents its own form of brain exercise.

The varying levels of challenge is a good thing. It keeps you on your toes, keeps things interesting, and in fact, you don’t want it to be easy. If using memory techniques suddenly became easy, they’d be boring and you would stop using them.

It’s very important to set a time aside for practicing recall to ensure that you do it.

I suggest using a Memory Journal to gather all your Memory Palaces and record your recall.

There’s no perfect journal, but one I recommend is called The Freedom Journal. It has just enough space for an effective Memory Palace drawing and lets you create 10-day “sprints” over the course of 100 days.

How To Recall One A Verse-By-Verse Basis

As you go, “trigger” off the associations you made and let them bring back the information.

For example, I would start with the specific Memory Palace and the specific station.

How does one remember that?

If you’ve correctly planned and organized your memorization activities, then the answer will be known to you without any stress or strain.


You create the Memory Palace Network to serve the outcome you want. This process alone will help you remember what is memorized where.

If you’re properly numbered each Magnetic Station as taught in the free course, then you’ll have even more “autopilot familiarity” with your Memory Palaces.

How the Memory Palace Tells You The Right Word Order

And if you are memorizing verse numbers and memorizing the scriptures in verse order, order itself acts as a clue. It will tell you where in your Memory Palace the information is located.

Next, I would recall Andi and simply ask myself: “What was she associated with?”

Asking questions during recall is important because you’re encouraging your memory to do a bit of work.

Sometimes the entire line will blast back at you, almost like magic. Especially if you complete these powerful visualization exercises.

Other times, you’ll have to piece it together, word for word.

In all cases, if you have a pen or pencil in hand, recall the verse first, then write it down. Say the line out loud as well.

At more advanced levels, you can certainly remove the writing part, but I don’t recommend it. Even when I’m memorizing names of people I’ve met, I almost always write them out in my Memory Journal.

This simple, 1-2 minute practice ensure that I receive the full benefits for my memory and successful recall.

The Big 5 of Learning For Long Term Memory

In full, these are:

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Listening…
  • …from and into Memory

Visualized, the levels of processing effect for memory looks like this:

Graphic illustration of the Big Five of Learning

I’ve just mentioned writing out what you’ve memorized and speaking it out loud.

Writing automatically leads to reading, and you’ve already ready read the verses before, during and after memorizing them.

However, it’s good to also read interpretations by multiple thinkers where possible.

Plus, there are often more comprehensive commentaries available that you can read on various scriptures that will give your mind more context to help create deeper connections in both your imagination and the physical structures of your brain.

A Solo Way To Hear Memorized Verses Out Loud

It’s also important to also hear the verses spoken by others, so try to find recordings that you can listen to and recite along with them.

You can also record yourself and listen back to your own voice.

I also suggest making memorization a family or at least a community occasion.

Reciting with others and hearing others share what certain passages mean for them is very useful for creating long term memory impact.

The Biggest Levers You Need For Memorizing Any Scripture

In brief, you’ve got to commit to creating the time for scripture memorization.

Logical, isn’t it? If you really want to get something done, you’ll make the time.

How much time do you need?

No one can honestly say just how long it will take for you to reach your goals.

However, once you’ve started, chances are that this question will no longer be very interesting to you.

You’ll be enjoying the process so much and become completely satisfied that each new verse gets you closer to the goal. The journey will become so much more important than the destination.

And when those destinations are reached, you’ll be excited and want to create new ones. The benefits for the sharpness of your mind will be very clear to you.

Common Questions And Answers About Memorizing Scripture Quickly

Does The Length Matter?

Yes and no.

I recommend starting with short verses in the beginning. The sooner you develop the skills needed to quickly and accurately memorize short verses, the sooner you’ll be able to tackle longer verses.

The trick is in seeing that longer verses are usually just shorter verses fit together. In such cases, it can be very helpful to spend more time ensuring that you understand the gist of a long verse before committing it to memory.

Should you use flash cards and sticky notes?

No, I don’t recommend this because it doesn’t create the needed skills of memorization that a Memory Palace and association develops.

These forms don’t create brain exercise either. The only exception to the rule is if you are memorizing individual words or terms and don’t have the answer on the back of the card.

Instead, feature the Magnetic Imagery you created on the opposite side of the flash card or sticky note. In this way, you’ll ask your brain to do a bit of memory work and jog itself into action. The benefits of doing this will be incredibly rewarding.

And as soon as you can, leave the index cards and sticky notes behind.

Why Memorizing From Online Scripture Sources Is A No-No

Many people want to memorize from online sources such as the Scripture Typer app and Bible Memory Kids.

To be honest, these Bible apps look great. They’re clean, well-organized and perhaps even fun to use.

But they’re also creating Digital Amnesia.

If you must source your scripture from a screen, at least write it out in your handwriting and memorize from that. This practice will deepen the importance of the verse to your mind and is a win-win from the get-go.

What Scripture Do You Want To Memorize?

At the risk of being repetitive, knowing why you want to memorize scripture does matter.

For myself, I like to memorize the odd line from the Bible. But overall I prefer scripture from the non-dual tradition, Advaita Vedanta.

In this memory demonstration, you’ll see me recite 32 verses from a text called the Ribhu Gita: 

Although I didn’t memorize a verse every single day, I rarely spent more than 5 minutes on any single verse. It just isn’t necessary when you have these skills.

Ultimately, what really matters is that you learn the skills and ground the project on a solid reason reason why you want to commit the scripture to memory.

And remember:

Long-term memorization is a marathon, not a sprint.

Plan, show up consistently, and enjoy the multiple benefits as they increase, one verse at a time.

The post How to Memorize Scripture And Verse Numbers In 5 Minutes Or Less appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

You can learn how to memorize scripture and verse numbers fast. The steps are easy, fun and fast. Learn how to memorize verses now. You can learn how to memorize scripture and verse numbers fast. The steps are easy, fun and fast. Learn how to memorize verses now. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 57:50
Aphantasia Cure: How Alec Figueroa Helps Clear The Self-Diagnosis Confusion Thu, 21 Mar 2019 04:17:12 +0000 16 <p>If you've been looking for an aphantasia cure, you're in luck. Alec Figueroa of Aphantasia Meow has the best aphantasia test and the most likely paths you might need to find a lasting solution.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">Aphantasia Cure: How Alec Figueroa Helps Clear The Self-Diagnosis Confusion</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> AphantasiaMeow Logo for Interview with Aphantasia Cure Expert Alec FigueroaIf you’ve been looking for an aphantasia cure, you’re in luck.

Here’s why:

Alec Figueroa of AphantasiaMeow has been developing an objective aphantasia test while working with real people.

As a result of his research and helping create change with clients, Alec has uncovered some of the most likely paths you might need to find a lasting solution.

Not Sure If You Need The Aphantasia Cure?

Try this quick test:

Imagine you are on a beach at sunset.

Can you hear the waves crashing against the shore?

Do you feel a gentle breeze against your skin and the sand between your toes?

Can you taste the faint saltiness of the ocean? Can you picture the fiery hues as the sun meets the water on the horizon?

Red, orange, yellow, purple, and blue. Beautiful, isn’t it? Peaceful. Serene.

More questions…

When you close your eyes and picture this scene is it vivid?

Is it an experience as if you are really there? Can your sensory memory pick out a variety of sensations?

Or is your experience lost in fog… dull, distorted, and distant?

Or… is there nothing, only blackness?

If you see nothing in your mind…

Listen To Someone Who Cares About Curing Aphantasia

On today’s Magnetic Memory Method podcast I speak with imagination and aphantasia expert, Alec Figueroa.

Also known as “AphantasiaMeow,” Alec has been helping many people remove aphantasia from their lives.

We discuss his work with those who struggle with the idea that they do not have a “mind’s eye.”

And those who may not have been able to picture that beautiful beach at sunset have experienced tremendous relief.

Although this phenomenon was first introduced in 1880, it wasn’t until the mid-2000s that the idea of mental blindness began to be explored.

With studies still in the early stages as compared to other mental health fields Alec is on the forefront of bettering the lives of those whose imaginations are not as vivid as they would like.

Why People Seek Help When They Can’t Visualize

You may be skeptical of this idea of aphantasia, finding it hard to believe that someone couldn’t close their eyes and picture a juicy red apple, a shiny new bicycle, or freshly fallen snow on command.

But I feel empathy, because I don’t really see pictures in my mind either. And if curiosity is driving you, read on and click play on the episode to hear Alec’s approach to removing the problem.

You may have come here searching for answers because (depending on the source) you are the 4-5% of the population, or the 1 in 50, who is affected by aphantasia.

You may have heard of Alec’s work and wondered “Can he help me?” or, better still, “Can he help me help myself?”

Whatever the case, you are here now. And there really does seem like Alec’s aphantasia cure will help you.

And it seems to me that part of the reason Alec’s approach works is because many people seek help due to FOMO (fear of missing out).

That means they might be forgetting to focus on the glorious experiences they do have (such as we’ve seen from Penn Jillette).

But if you’re on this page, you’re either on a self-help journey for yourself, a loved one, or simply seeking to expand your knowledge on cutting edge brain health discoveries.

Interview Highlights

By listening to this interview today, you’ve taken the first step and congratulations are in order…we’ll be imagining ourselves sipping memory friendly drinks from coconuts sooner than you think!

All you need to do is press play and you will discover:

  • How to define the concepts of aphantasic, hyperphantasic, and prophantasic
  • Aphantasia versus a disorder (you don’t have to feel at a disadvantage to others)
  • The confusion surrounding aphantasic self-diagnosis techniques
  • Why a visual imagination may not be present
  • How to develop the mind’s eye through mental exercise
  • Image streaming as aphantasia therapy
  • “Imagery” as a multisensory concept
  • Parallels between meditation and mind’s eye development
  • How to overcome mental blocks and learned helplessness to improve mental imagery through some powerful visualization exercises

In sum, there are many brain training exercises out there. But if you have aphantasia, what Alec offers is most likely the best. Follow up with him and let him help you!

Further Resources on the Web, This Podcast, and the MMM Blog:

Aphantasia Meow. This is Alec’s official website. It includes the VIVIQ (Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire). This test was originally developed at the University of Exeter and is still under development.

Alec interviews me about my experience of SUDDENLY becoming visual:

As I mentioned above, Alec is doing hands on work with people and creating positive transformation. Book a time with him if you need help!

AphantasiaMeow on YouTube

Scientific American – When the Mind’s Eye is Blind

Aphantasia: Experiences, Perceptions, and Insights

Aphantasia: Develop Your Memory Even if You Cannot See Mental Images

The post Aphantasia Cure: How Alec Figueroa Helps Clear The Self-Diagnosis Confusion appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

If you've been looking for an aphantasia cure, you're in luck. Alec Figueroa of Aphantasia Meow has the best aphantasia test and the most likely paths you might need to find a lasting solution. If you've been looking for an aphantasia cure, you're in luck. Alec Figueroa of Aphantasia Meow has the best aphantasia test and the most likely paths you might need to find a lasting solution. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 1:11:53
5 Sensory Memory Exercises For Better Memory Palace Success Thu, 07 Mar 2019 23:41:35 +0000 6 <p>We don't usually think of sensory memory as something that can help us use a Memory Palace bettter. These 5 sensory memory exercises show you how.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">5 Sensory Memory Exercises For Better Memory Palace Success</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Illustration of a sensory memory exercise with Anthony Metivier with Cheshire catAs someone who is not very visual, I’m so glad I learned how to use sensory memory to help me use memory techniques better.

But at first, it was really hard coming to grips with the fact that I don’t really see pictures in my mind.

After all, how is a “Memory Palace” supposed to work if you can’t “see” images in your imagination?

Well, whether you’re low on the visual scale, like me, or have full-blown aphantasia, I’ve got 5 simple memory tricks.

Each involve a different kind of sensory memory you can combine with your Memory Palace Network.

These tricks will help you create and use Memory Palaces and your own mnemonic examples (a.k.a. Magnetic Imagery) quickly.

And more importantly than learning to create a Memory Palace Network and mental imagery quickly, you’ll use sensory memory to make the information stick in your mind. It’s actually very easy.

But here’s a quick warning before we get started:

There’s going to be some people who will still insist that they can’t do any of these exercises.

If that’s you, keep reading until you reach the final tip. Few, if any, will find an excuse for the final tip I’ll share.

The Strange History Of My (Non-Visual) Sensory Memory Blessings

It’s true. I don’t really see pictures in my mind.

Although it’s not true that I see nothing at all, if anything, I find what I do see almost useless, if not distracting.

When I tell my memory athlete friends this fact, they either:

  • Know exactly what I mean
Use some of the same processes I’m about to share
  • Sometimes are purely “visual” in some sense I have yet to understand…

I say “some sense,” because even with our current technology, it’s not possible to peer into anyone else’s imagination.

Anyhow, if you know the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast, you may have heard some of these conversations before.

If not, I recommend you listen to some of them – I’ve learned a ton that have improved my practice and even re-listening to some of them will help your practice too.

Here are some of my favorite episodes that touch upon sensory memory:

Of course, you need to listen to these episodes with yourself in mind.


Because at the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter what others do in their minds. Each of us experiences only one mind – the mind we’ve been blessed with.

And what a blessing indeed! (Unless you decide not to make it the most incredible experience it can be.)

But I understand that some people currently have miserable experiences, and not being able to use memory techniques must be very miserable indeed.

So, if you can’t see images in your mind, here’s the first memory trick that will help you find more Memory Palaces and use them:

Sound illustration for The Auditory Sensory Memory Palace Trick

#1: The Auditory Sensory Memory Palace Trick

Think about a familiar place.

Take your school, for example.

When I think purely about sound, I hear the voice of Mr. Andrews:

“Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s”.

He used to say this every time we were supposed to hand in our homework.

I have an idea of what the classroom looked like, and since he was a big fellow, I have a general sense of his physical presence. But it’s his voice that really stands out.

Likewise, I think of my various band teachers and can even place where different sections of the orchestra were in the different rooms without needed to render a visual picture.

Zero Visualization Needed

There is a way to turn this into a picture that requires zero visualization, but we’ll get to that soon.

For now, is this a cool memory trick or what?

The more you focus just on sounds, the more you’ll explore powerful dimensions of your memory.

This auditory focus will make a huge difference – especially in connection with the video I’ve created for you on mining your autobiographical memory for more Memory Palaces. (Coming soon. Make sure you’re subscribed to this blog and complete these episodic memory exercises in the meantime)

Illustration of a hand with hands on each finger to illustrate a kinesthetic sensory memory exercise

#2: The “What do you feel?” Exercise

Let’s go for something soft with this exercise.

When I completed this exercise, I thought of my Cheshire cat.

I’ve had two in my life – once from when I visited Disneyland around age 10 and one my mom sent me just a few years ago to fill in the gap.

I had to get rid of the old one during one of my epic moves around the globe. Thanks, mom!

In terms of the Memory Palace this brings to mind, it’s not Disneyland, though I have used parts of the park as a Memory Palace.

Rather, in this case, I think of the plane ride home.

Now, you might think that an airplane is not great Memory Palace material.

Au contraire, and we’ll talk about using them one day soon. Make sure you’re subscribed for when the day comes.

A Smiling Sensory Memory Example

Anyhow, I have this vague memory of being a 10 year old hugging the Cheshire cat. He joins me here:

To make this brain exercise work, I really dig into what that felt like in my memory. 

Then I dig further.

And there are indeed other physical sensations related to flying that come to mind.

Try accessing these different levels of sensation-based memory for yourself:

  • The softness (or hardness) of the seat beneath you
  • The temperature of the glass when you touch the window
  • The feeling of anticipation as the plane accelerates down the runway

Suddenly, all kinds of sensations emerge when you complete this simple memory exercise.

Now It’s Your Turn

Think about flights you’ve taken. (Or train trips, road trips, etc.)

When I completed this exercise, all kinds of flights I’d forgotten emerge.

Write the ideas that come up into a Memory Journal and include all the sensations you can think of.

Think of it as a kind of personal, private sensory memory test.

Bang presto!

When I completed this exercise, I found myself with oodles of airplane and airport Memory Palaces to work with along with a wide variety of sensations.

Memory exercises like these are the closest thing to real magic that exists, don’t you think? Especially when used in the context of these additional recovered memory exercises.

Give them all a try!

Illustration of a futuristic king for the Concepts Are King Sensory Memory Exercise

#3: The Concepts Are King Exercise

In a nutshell, this exercise helps you explore what you think and remember conceptually.

Now, this one is a bit of a stretch, I’ll admit. But stretching is good.

Start with one of the most basic concepts: Truth.

What comes to mind when you think of the truth?

I think of libraries.

And when I think of libraries, a ton of them come to mind. In fact, I’ve worked in three of them, and studied in dozens more. Each make great Memory Palaces.

Next, think of a concept like justice.

It’s true:

During high school I once wound up in the drunk tank. It sucked back then, but makes for an interesting Memory Palace now.

I took law in high school and observed a few court cases too. I had a friend who was a lawyer before he went to the great Memory Palace in the sky and he comes to mind too – all from thinking about the concept of justice.

The concepts of math, chemistry, weather all bring multiple associations – and not a single one of them can be seen visually, strictly speaking.

They’re just concepts.

And thinking about Einstein for math, Breaking Bad for chemistry and a meteorologist I know named Dave don’t require me to make mental images either.

Remember: lowering the cognitive load always helps you learn faster and remember more.

Illustration of Anthony Metivier in Beijing for The Delicious Aroma Exercise

Anthony Metivier during a rare cheat in a Beijing dumpling restaurant

#4: The Delicious Aroma Exercise

I’ll bet at least one person in your family has some kind of secret recipe.

And even if it isn’t secret, there’s a dish they make really well that you adore. Maybe even something based around foods that improve memory.

Now, although I can’t eat a large number of things I used to love, my mom’s zucchini bread comes to mind.

My dad also makes a mean spaghetti. And since we moved around a lot, quite a few kitchens come to mind for use as Memory Palaces.

Then I think of a few romantic meals I’ve had over the years. These took place in buildings ranging from the CN Tower in Toronto to the Pizzeria Monte Carlo in Rome.

Even as someone who isn’t a foodie, there are oodles of tastes and aromas that come to mind all over the world.

Fruit juices and dates in Cairo, Lingonberry jam in Sweden, dumplings in Beijing… all wonderful Memory Palaces just waiting to be unlocked from memory.

I’ll bet you have dozens of options.

Anthony Metivier Brain Exercise Memory Palace of Berlin Apartment

An “Un-visualized” Berlin Memory Palace

#5. The “Un-Visualization” Memory Palace Exercise

What? How can you “un-visualize” something?

Let me answer that question for you:

Unless you’re dead-set against it, lazy or uninterested in the most miraculous memory tool in the universe, the answer is yes.

All you have to do is draw your Memory Palaces.

Instead of trying to juggle space in your mind, make it simple.

Rather than trying to imagine the rooms and hallways and garages and driveways and all kinds of things that you might not be able to see clearly in your min, break it down into simple squares.

On paper.

When I first encountered memory techniques and the Memory Palace, I couldn’t fathom how on earth I was supposed to see myself moving through a building I wasn’t in.

And that’s a very good thing, because the strange explanations I was reading prompted me to solve this issue for myself. I got my head out of the books written by memory competitors and I went deep into the history of these techniques.

And reading between the lines of texts like the Rhetorica ad Herrenium, I discovered that they weren’t really talking about visualizing their Memory Palaces.

And the notion of making them tactile and strategizing them before using them  gave me the idea to make them tactile in the simplest and easiest way you can:

With pencil and paper.

And as soon as I got results from doing this, I couldn’t stop exploring!

I am still amazed by just how many buildings I can visit in my mind. Making them visual simply by drawing squares on paper makes memory training so much easier.

No More Excuses Along Your Memory Training Journey

Let’s face it:

People with no hands can draw Memory Palaces with their teeth, their feet or even ask for others to help.

I know this for a fact because I’ve had correspondence from people who can’t move anything but their mouths.

Yet, each have created and used Memory Palaces by drawing them nonetheless.

In sum:

There really are no excuses.

Of course, if you don’t want to join the great memory tradition, no problem. I don’t want to learn how to pack a parachute and jump out of a plane. Some things just aren’t for everyone.

But if you do and you’ve ever struggled with the visual element, here’s a bold promise:

You really can rest assured that you can use memory techniques and they will work for you even without seeing pictures in your mind.

Here’s the best way I can show you how:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

In fact, due to an interesting turn of events, I wound up competing once at a competition with memory athlete and memory expert Dave Farrow.

Based on that experience, I can tell you that there’s really no time to create pictures in your mind when the cameras are rolling and the clock is on.

The mnemonics I created in that short competition were almost purely conceptual and I was pleasantly surprised by just how well I did…

Especially as someone completely unprepared and with zero competition practice, history or particular interest in throwing down the gloves.

So even if you are hyper-visual, you’ll want to consider the advantages of adding these other senses to your memory practice.

What do you say?

Can you imagine yourself moving from a purely visual approach to using memory techniques to a multi-sensory approach?

I promise you’ll enjoy better results from memory techniques as a result. And if you need more, here are 5 Memory Palace Examples to improve your memory training practice.

The post 5 Sensory Memory Exercises For Better Memory Palace Success appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

We don't usually think of sensory memory as something that can help us use a Memory Palace bettter. These 5 sensory memory exercises show you how. We don't usually think of sensory memory as something that can help us use a Memory Palace bettter. These 5 sensory memory exercises show you how. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 28:37
21 Study Tips [Fast And Easy Ways To Learn Faster] Fri, 22 Feb 2019 04:31:48 +0000 6 <p>Looking for study tips? Here are 21 speed learning suggestions from a Ph.d. with 2 M.A.s who combatted depression, and learned fast anyway.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">21 Study Tips [Fast And Easy Ways To Learn Faster]</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> 21 Study Tips Image of LibraryAre there any study tips that I’d kill to know if I were going back to school?

I get this question all the time.

And although I wouldn’t kill for anything, a few suggestions do come to mind…

Fewer pints of Guinness, for one thing (and I’ll explain exactly why).

More time in the library.

Perhaps even committing to another area of study altogether.

(Even if that might have lead to an entirely different career path.)

So with some reflection on the years since I’ve earned my B.A., two M.A.s, and a Ph.D., I’ve assembled 21 study tips for you.

Let’s jump in.

#1. Learn Memory Techniques Earlier

This is, without a doubt, my no. 1 criticism of my own learning career.

(Yes, even more than all those blurry post-study session happy hours!)

I wish I would have started learning memory techniques sooner.

Cruising altitude

We are all familiar with the expression “cruising altitude,” right?

Generally this is the point in the flight where the “seat-belt light” is turned off, you’re free to move about the cabin, and everything is smooth sailing.

What if I told you this cruising altitude was attainable…faster? All it takes is getting started. Seems like a no-brainer, doesn’t it?

If you commit to learning memory techniques sooner you’ll develop this intuition – knowing what to do, how to do it, and when.

The true roots of inspiration

Growing up, we all had that mother figure that just knew what we needed.

The decision to learn memory techniques will serve you and reward you tenfold.

You’ll be able to:

  • Adopt them on the fly because you’re always prepared.
  • Learn more, and more precisely because information will have a place to be stored.
  • Avoid decision anxiety because you will know which memory techniques work for you.

As Brian Tracy once said, “The hardest part of any important task is getting started on it in the first place. Once you actually begin work on a valuable task, you seem to be naturally motivated to continue.”

Start there, and I promise, you won’t regret it.

#2. Keep a Memory Journal

What do you do to remember those important points from a professor’s lecture?

Surely you don’t just sit in the classroom and hope you remember what was discussed that day come finals week. You take notes don’t you? Of course you do!

Well, why aren’t you taking notes in all areas of your life? Valuable information can slip away too easily if it’s not recorded. It’s such a simple fix, taking minimal time to physically write things down.

To learn faster, to really learn the information you need to know, you must sort through the “junk.”

The ultimate “decision tree”

This means deciding:

  • What must be captured in your memory
  • What you can legitimately reduce
  • What will relieve cognitive load
  • What you can let go of completely

In other words, prioritize.

I’ve found using The Freedom Journal as my Memory Journal works great for helping me discover and determine the big levers I need to be focusing on.

Anthony Metivier using the Freedom Journal

Anthony Metivier using the Freedom Journal

If you put in the work of creating and maintaining a Memory Journal, here’s the best part:

Flipping back through the pages will show you not only how far you’ve come, but where you can make improvements.

#3. Double Down on Memory Palaces

Excuse the casino speak, but I would undoubtedly double down on the number of memory palaces I created.

Let me be clear, I made a ton, but when I think about the benefits of memory palaces I know I should have created a lot more. By creating memory palaces you’ll unlock your:

  • Spatial memory
  • Autobiographical memory
  • Episodic memory
  • Procedural memory
  • Figural memory
  • Semantic memory

I know creating Memory Palaces may be overwhelming. I know you may not know where to start, but this is something that you just need to dive in and try.

My free course will guide you, step-by-step, in this creation process:

Magnetic Memory Method Free Memory Improvement Course

#4. Complete a 00-99 P.A.O. sooner

This is another one of those special memory techniques that my best advice is to just dive in and get it done.

Think about what a sizzling fast memory would be like, learning as fast as you want to.

That guiding vision, that inspiration, is possible when you have a P.A.O. (Person Action Object System) in place.

If you want guidance in creating one, check out How to Memorize Math, Numbers, Simple Arithmetic & Equations.

In brief:

  1. Start with the Memory Palace.
  2. Learn the Major Method.
  3. Then use the Memory Palace and the Major together to complete your PAO.

Simply put:

If numbers are involved in how you need to study fast, this number-memorization skill is essential.

Avoid perfectionism

Your first P.A.O. doesn’t have to be perfect the first time. Mine wasn’t.

In fact, I still make changes to mine. It is in a constant state of flow, of refinement.

One step at a time forward…sometimes sideways to tweak your P.A.O. You’re always moving towards your goal if you try to be. As long as you’re putting forth the effort you will always be progressing.

#5. Read even more memory improvement books

Understand this:

The more you know, the more you can know.

The more you expose yourself to literature, you will get the benefit of the primacy effect, the recency effect, and serial positioning effect.

Anthony Metivier with Tony Buzan Books on Mind Mapping In Beijing

Anthony Metivier with a Chinese translation of a Tony Buzan book

Continually returning to a wealth of information, that repetition makes a huge difference in learning.

There is almost an infinite amount of memory literature on the market these days (including some great information from not-so-great teachers).

Patience is the key

My advice:

  • Cast a wide net
  • Use discernment to find what’s good for you
  • Be open to a variety of writing and teaching styles
  • Always continue to invest in your education

You will read more critically to retain information, and develop patience by reading a wide variety of literature from the memory tradition.

In short, read as much as you can.

#6. Teach memory techniques sooner

This goes for any profession. The more you want to learn something, the sooner you need to teach it.


You’ll learn what you seek to teach better because you’ll see where your understanding is lacking.

Plus, you’ll see where your ability to effectively enunciate and describe the information is lacking.

The science of feedback loops in learning

Then, you’ll figure out how to improve in real time as you receive feedback.

There’s even a name for this, the protégé effect.

The most important science in the article is this:

“Researchers have found that students enlisted to tutor others work harder to understand the material, recall it more accurately, and apply it more effectively…[These students] score higher on test than pupils learning for their own sake.

[Studies have shown] that first-born children are more intelligent than their later-born brothers and sisters…contributing their higher IQs result from the time they spend showing their younger siblings the ropes.”

The Roman philosopher Seneca said:

“While we teach, we learn.”

Now that this ancient wisdom has been proven by science, why not apply it in your own learning journey?

#7. Keep up card memorization practice

I took a break from my card memorization practice too soon in my educational career, and I know I would have learned much, much sooner incorporating this as a daily practice.

I found many, many benefits to card practice once I returned to routine practice. You will learn to:

  • Deal with multiple levels of information at the same time.
  • Deal with information that is repetitive and similar, yet still distinguish it.
  • Deal with long sequences of information along well-crafted Memory Palace journeys

#8. Language learning

From complicated formulas and symbols, to mathematical equations everything is language based.

The sooner you learn how to memorize words and phrases, the better you will build your skills for learning any information because any information you encode into memory palaces will be in words and phrases.

Languages = connections

Learning language gives you more sounds to work with. A greater range of sounds gives you the ability to work with abstract and concrete examples more easily. You mental dexterity will increase as well.

But this goes beyond you…

Just as teaching others accelerates your learning, learning a language and being in contact with more people sooner is a powerful tool to increase your learning speed.

Take advantage of those connections you build with others, because people are one of your greatest assets with memory work.

#9. Read WAY more history

Whenever you are using memory techniques you are using information that already exists in your head.

Put it this way:

The more information that you have already in your head, the more you’re able to use it in your memory encoding, using mnemonics.

Makes sense, right?

The more that those are real, substantial people, then the more real and prominent they’re going to be in your mind.

Even better:

This knowledge will be more accessible. Raw accessibility will reduce the cognitive load on your mind because you’re working from the real instead of wrangling with the imaginary.

Off the deep end with history

Reading history gives you a greater pool to draw from in your Magnetic Imagery. This, in turn, increases your ability to learn faster.

No matter the subject – choose something that interests you – and get your nose in a book about it.

Heck, I even read while walking just to make good use of the time:

How to Improve Focus And Concentration Anthony Metivier Walking While Reading

Walking and reading in Denmark

I know it may seem counter-intuitive to add another “to-do” to your list, but think of the long-game.

There may even be unusual ways to complete note taking on the fly too. (Not to mention creating and using impromptu Memory Palaces)

All these steps are beneficial to your overall brain health, not just accelerated learning (though it is something to desire).

#10. Do more leadership/community work

Leadership is a huge skill. You can read people better, seeing their strengths and where they need support better.

Developing your qualities as a great leader and expert in your field, partnered with the idea of teaching, with help you learn more, more quickly.

Everything leads back to the Primacy and Recency effect.

The more you are continually coming across the topic, the deeper it will get into your memory.

Learn the natural way

This truly makes learning natural.

Plus, in-depth conversations will occur in these group settings. You will be effortlessly immersed in your topic so that you are continuously learning without even realizing it.

Easy peasy, no?

Image of Anthony Metivier helping some local entrepreneurs use Thinkific in Brisbane

Helping some local entrepreneurs use Thinkific in Brisbane

#11. Apply for more scholarships

Though I received some great scholarships, doubling down on the amount I applied for is another thing I would do, without questioning, if returning to university.

I would do whatever it took to apply for more, and there’s a number of reasons why:

  • Alleviating money worries frees you to “worry” about the future.
  • Concentrating on your education instead of whether you can afford rent and tuition creates a more powerful resume.
  • You’ll improve your application skills.
  • Not only will practice create a better application essay, but your collection of reference letters will grow. You’ll extol your own great qualities more eloquently, but so will others.

It’s amazing what a little positive mental attitude and encouragement from others can do to transform your life.

#12. Invest in more training

There is so much more you can learn by supplementing the core subjects you’re learning.

You can learn so much more by applying what you’re learning in other areas.

You can also learn more about areas you’re already expert in. That’s why I attended a ThinkBuzan memory training, after all.

Anthony Metivier with Tony Buzan

Anthony Metivier with Tony Buzan

Whether its CPR certification, martial arts training (those were just a few of my “should haves” when I think about things I should have learned sooner), a combination of short-term certifications and long-term training can be beneficial to developing learning skills.

They don’t have to be related to what you are studying per se, but will be beneficial if they were.

For example, I know I would dive into memory training a lot sooner had I realized the impact it would make on my life in the future.

Whatever you’re learning, find ways to apply it to other disciplines for maximum return.

#13. Get a writing mentor


Your goal here is not to become the next William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, or Jane Austen (though I’m sure none of us would mind the accolades). It’s simply to improve your writing skills.

The best way to do that is by having a writing mentor.

Jon Morrow Blogging and Writing Mentor and King of Blogging

Jon Morrow of and

My main writing mentor for this blog is Jon Morrow. If you compare his life lessons post to my life mistakes post, you’ll see why he’s considered the King of Blogging.

Free writing mentors are everywhere

But if you can’t afford a mentor, here are some suggestions:

  • Have a graduate English student look at your writing
  • Join a writing club
  • Find online people for whom writing is more than just their passion, but also the kind of career you want to experience

This focus will help you find people who genuinely care for the end product. Their suggestions can lead to greater ways of packaging ideas, and better mental organization, and, in turn, greater powers of expression.

You can improve the world with your words and should strive to do so in every sentence.

#14. Hire a proofreader/editor

To further improve your writing skills, not only is a mentor a great asset, but a proofreader or editor as well.

This doesn’t necessarily mean hiring, or exchanging money for their services.

This can also be a great chance to peer mentor with others.

Exchange writing, give each other feedback on clarity, grammar, sentence, structure, etc.

I did this a lot in university – just not nearly enough.

Hiring is worth it

And if I were to do it again, I’d just hire someone for help.

After all, writing my dissertation twice… really sucked.

The question is… why is this a study tip?

  1. If you have an editor of any kind work with your writing, you’ll save time – time that can be applied to more studying.
  2. You’ll study what your writing looks like after it has been improved.

Both of these outcomes are incredible.

#15. Write non-fiction sooner

While I wrote a lot of fiction while in university, I didn’t write nearly enough non-fiction.

If you are already honing your writing skills with the help of a writing mentor and proofing/editing, the writing process itself can be beneficial to accelerate your learning.

With nonfiction you are putting in the work of research, through reading, and, many times, interviews – conversations about your topic, as discussed above, create an atmosphere of immersive study.

Again, this sounds a bit off topic when it comes to study advice, but it really isn’t. Practicing different kinds of writing directly amounts to studying those kinds of writing.

#16. Research more before following medical advice

This is something that may be hard to hear, but sometimes doctors are wrong.

It’s the brutal truth, though.

Medical Anatomy skeleton image related to memory techniques

And if you’ve ever sought out a second opinion when you felt a diagnosis or treatment option was incorrect, you know it.

In fact, in Principles, Ray Dalio shares a frightening story about how he avoided a completely unnecessary removal of his throat by getting multiple medical opinions.

Oftentimes, as a college student you may not feel like you have the means or the time to seek out that second opinion.

Advocate for your own health

Think of it this way:

What could be more important than advocating for your own health?

I’ve shared my Bipolar memory adventures before, and still think I would have been better off getting a second opinion. I just didn’t know that I could or even should have sought it out.

Double check the advice you are given against medical and scientific literature.

Do your due diligence

Doing your own due diligence before following the advice of a medical professional can save you time, stress, and money, leaving you free to concentrate on your education.

This is another example of an obstacle that can be prevented easily, with care on your part.

It’s also another area that will give you practice in the kinds of study tips that can save your life.

#17. Move to another country sooner

Moving to another country, for even a short period of time (studying abroad for a semester, for example) is a great tool to help you learn faster.

There are numerous benefits, including:

  • Learning another language
  • Exposure to many different people, giving you the opportunity to learn multiple topics through experience with them
  • Unlocking parts of your brain
  • Inspiration for building more Memory Palaces
  • Your numeracy skills will improve by dealing with different currencies and banking systems

Avoid the “some day” trap

Many people toy with the idea of starting a new life by reinventing themselves in a foreign country.

Anthony Metivier Magnetic Memory Method in a Berlin Memory Palace

My favorite Berlin Memory Palace

But they see this as a “someday” dream.

Don’t do that. If you think of the practical reasons and benefits to a “big move” you’ll just start packing.

And the research you do along the way will build your study skills and give you the adventure of a lifetime.

(I saw this as a person who has lived in 4 countries and visited over 30).

#18. Be clearer about my purpose sooner.

Having a big vision to pull you through mundane tasks is the key.

Get clear about your goals and what you seek to achieve, and you will have the motivation to “power through” all the steps we’ve discussed.

If you know what you want to do, if you have clarity in purpose, you will put forth the effort to make your vision a reality.

#19. Diet, sleep, fitness, relationships

University is the time when many young people are “on their own” for the first time.

Students are figuring out their newfound freedom, and oftentimes this is an experiment in self-control.

Mental garbage is a barrier to learning faster, and is a result of not eating well, sleeping well, and engaging in, sometimes, toxic relationships.

Everything consumes

Understand this critical point:

Your brain is an energy consumption device. It’s consuming energy.

A great relationship can fuel it with energy.

A bad relationship can rob it of energy.

Remedy this by setting simple goals about the kinds of relationships you want.

The big picture

Remember that “big picture” vision we just talked about? From friendships to romance, and stick to this vision. Your energy will flow properly, and not hinder your ability to learn.

Otherwise, your study time will be chewed up on searching for a new or replacement mate. And that can seriously mess with your focus.

#20. Meditation for Better Memory

I had many, many opportunities to meditate, but I didn’t start my practice soon enough.

I would have began my practice earlier had I realized one important, yet simple fact:

There are multiple kinds of meditation.

Walking Meditation works for improving focus and concentration

Walking meditation works too!

For years, I imagined it as purely mental, or sitting just to sit.

But meditation is much more than a mental activity.

No matter the form, they all help with mental organization, concentration and focus.

Focus is a fact

Obviously, the better you are able to focus on information. The better you can focus on the things that matter in life, you do not get caught up in all the little things that don’t.

Explore the different types to find what works best for you, be it mindfulness meditation, transcendental meditation, or guided meditation, among others. Experiment to find out what works best for you.

#21. Cut out the booze

Yes, you read that correctly, and, no, it’s not a typo.

Alcohol is a brain killer.

I’m not going to preach about it any further than sharing my story.

I drank like a fish in university and it was almost certainly the true cause of my many depressions.

These horrible mental states interrupted my ability to focus, concentrate and remember.

Sure, memory techniques helped me get through. In fact, I used to flaunt the fact that I could remember names and do memory-related magic stunts while completely inebriated. All that sounds foolish to me now given the price I’ve paid.

How to avoid mental and physical misery as a student

If I had only been smart enough to eliminate alcohol in my life a decade sooner, I would have saved myself a ton of mental agony and physical pain.

All that misery?

It caused serious personal conflicts too, which on top of everything else, interrupted by ability to learn as quickly and thoroughly as I wanted.

If I had a time machine, I’d slap myself silly for inviting so much chaos into my life!

Short And Sweet Final Thoughts

Does any of this make sense to you?

If so, here’s how to get started:

Begin by incorporating one or two of these techniques into your routine. Then gradually expand.

You will find that with each new addition or removal I’ve suggested on this page that your learning, over time, has accelerated.

You will remember more, much faster. So much so that you’ll be able to enjoy much more of life, all guilt-free, all as a reward for a job well done.

The post 21 Study Tips [Fast And Easy Ways To Learn Faster] appeared first on Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace.

Looking for study tips? Here are 21 speed learning suggestions from a Ph.d. with 2 M.A.s who combatted depression, and learned fast anyway. Looking for study tips? Here are 21 speed learning suggestions from a Ph.d. with 2 M.A.s who combatted depression, and learned fast anyway. Anthony Metivier's Magnetic Memory Method Podcast clean 39:58
3 Memory Palace Training Exercises [Beginner-Intermediate-Advanced] Fri, 15 Feb 2019 01:30:08 +0000 6 <p>Looking for Memory Palace training exercises? I've got 3 for you today, ranging from beginner, to intermediate and advanced level memory training.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="">3 Memory Palace Training Exercises [Beginner-Intermediate-Advanced]</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="">Magnetic Memory Method - How to Memorize With A Memory Palace</a>.</p> Memory Palace Training Exercises Feature Image of Athlete with a thought bubbleAre you searching for Memory Palace training exercises and an easy way to build your first (or second) Memory Palace Network?

And do you find yourself frustrated by:

  • Memory training apps that fail to deliver?
  • Endless how-to posts on the Internet that “guarantee” results?
  • Memory improvement books that leave you entertained but you still find yourself no closer to using the tools that will help you build your memory? 

I know it can seem like an endless loop of information when it comes to memory training on the Internet.

It’s almost as if you’re on a hamster wheel, getting no closer to your destination. You may feel discouraged, or worse, ready to give up…

But before you throw your hands up in the air and admit defeat, know this:

The problem isn’t you.

The problem is the “quick fix” methods full of empty promises.

And here’s the very good news:. 

I have developed three simple Memory Palace training exercises.

And I know these exercises will help you to build an effective Memory Palace network. (Scroll down for proof.)

No, the exercises on this page are not a quick fix, hack, or shortcut.

But what you’re about to discover is a simple and proven method that will help you create and implement Memory Palaces so you can:

  • Learn the language you always wanted
  • Pass your exams with flying colors
  • Improve your life by improving your brain heath.

Are you ready?

If so…

Brace yourself for these three, mind-blowingly simple Memory Palace training routines.

1. The Alphabet Memory Palace Exercise

Before we get started, a quick question:

Do you have a memory journal?