When asked what people did just the day before, most people struggle to answer with full clarity and details.
An observation made by a police officer showed that people that had their phone in their hands when waiting to be questioned showed the worst memory recollection.
What did you do today?
What did you do yesterday?
What were you doing a month ago? What about 6 months ago?
You would probably struggle to answer all those questions. First, you would try to peg the date to some event.
You would open a calendar to check what date it was and see if there are any birthdays or holidays that are close and work from there.
You could also open your photos on the phone and see if that gives you some clarification on what were you busy with at that time.
Recollecting can be hard, and there are multiple reasons for this.
- Neuroscientists have discovered that when someone recalls an old memory, a representation of the entire event is instantaneously reactivated in the brain that often includes the people, location, smells, music, and other trivia. Recalling old memories can have a cinematic quality. Memories often seem to play out in the mind's eye like an old Super 8 home movie or vintage Technicolor film, and this new research explains why .
How to remember better
First off, all of the new research shows that it is vital not to be distracted during the event or some occasion that you want to be remembered. Getting distracted takes the fun away and forces you to multitask.
Multitasking is the biggest killer of memory as it splits your focus and doesn’t allow long term memory to take its shape.
To remember something for a long time, you have to embrace the moment. Put the phone away, switch off the music(if it is not music you are trying to remember) and be in the moment for at least 15-25 minutes.
If you take the phone into your hands at any point, you have basically transferred your consciousness into another state. This state doesn’t allow you to remember; it only allows you to react.
If you are looking at how to understand and remember things better for whatever it can be. Just limit your phone usage to a couple of times during the day when you HAVE TO.
The world won't stop if you stop constantly checking Instagram. More food posts will be shown; more dog videos will be thrown in. But you will keep on getting better and better in life with self-awareness and memory.
It takes a simple act of saying enough, but it will change your life forever.
Start now with some practices to stop your urges at checking your phone. Put it into another room if you have too.
Get perfect later, with practice, and you will see the difference straight away.