Memorizing Concepts Made Easy (And Magnetic)

Plato_and_Aristotle_in_The_School_of_Athens,_by_italian_Rafael

In this episode of the Magnetic Memory Method Podcast …

The Truth …

The Facts …

And the Lies about …

Memorizing Facts with Mnemonics

Program Notes

Dear Memorizer,

This podcast episode is based on a note I received recently. It goes like this:

Hello Anthony!

First of all, congratulations for these great methods that you have developed, they really work and have been very helpful for me to memorize a lot of stuff.

I have read some of your books, heard all of your podcasts and understand very well how to memorize by using memory palaces and “crazy” associations.

However, I study advanced economics and I have found it very difficult to memorize certain concepts and theories due to the fact that there are several variables which correlate with each other in many different ways. Also I find it difficult to create vivid and colorful images of interest rates, change rates, investment and other things like that. Every time I try to imagine weird things, I end up making up complicated stories in my mind which add complexity to the memorization process.

Could you give me some advice on this please?

Thank you very much in advance for your reply!!

Have a great day!

Thanks for your message and for entrusting me to answer your question.

First off, you might want to watch what is probably my most popular video on the topic addresses concept memorization.

With respect to variables and correlations, I recommend not focusing on these. Instead, focus on core information and then experiment with building Memory Palaces just for correlations and just for variables. Without knowing your subject, it’s difficult to tell you exactly how, but even if I did, your experimentation will do more for you than my instruction now that you know the techniques.

The thing to go for is what I call the “rhizomatic” effect. We often use the term “building knowledge,” which assumes that it’s a bottom up process.

But what if we could build knowledge laterally? And in a way that goes up and down? In a way that little bubbles of new knowledge spring up spontaneously as we proceed?

That’s what multiple Memory Palaces will do for you. And the more strategically designed they are, the better for creating these kinds of connections.

So again: I personally don’t think fussing too much about the variables etc. will bring much unless you treat them as individual units (as such). So, let’s so that:

Core information x has 25 variables.

You could either:

1) Build a Memory Palace for storing all kinds of core information and then have secondary Memory Palaces for variables.

2) Build a Memory Palace just for one piece of core information and then include all of the variables and correlates you need along that journey.

I would suggest experimenting with both.

Why? Because …

You never lose by experimenting.
In fact, you create that rhizomatic effect I’m talking about even if things don’t work out. Because the Memory Palaces and procedures that didn’t work still exist. They’ve taught you something. They might even have a bit of information in them that can be salvaged.Finally, complicated images and stories are a trial by fire that we all need to go through at the beginning. With experience, you’ll learn to streamline the process. You’ll stop throwing in everything but the kitchen sink.
But this “economy of means” can only be achieved by experience, experimentation and doing.
And like I said, all experiments will be valuable.Just don’t overthink the process.
Don’t fall prey to doubt.
Think of it like exercise:
How do you learn to execute a properly formed pushup?By feeling your way into it.
By experiencing the consequences – even if only a little – of a poorly formed pushup.
It’s really that simple.

Keep me posted on how you fare and let me know if you have any further questions. 🙂

Further Resources

Earlier post on how to memorize concepts referred to in this episode of the podcast.

How to Create a Large Memory Palace by Florian Delle.

About the author: Anthony Metivier is the founder of the Magnetic Memory Method, a systematic, 21st Century approach to memorizing foreign language vocabulary, dreams, names, music, poetry and much more in ways that are easy, elegant, effective and fun.

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