In my mounds of research findings, one of my favorite lists
for improving the memory is from Johns Hopkins Health Alert and it goes like
Improve Your Memory With These 9
·The minor memory lapses that occur with
age-associated memory impairment can’t be eliminated completely; however, a
number of common-sense strategies can improve overall memory at any age. The
keys are to stay focused, active and alert.
·Memory Tip 1: Place commonly lost items in a
designated spot. If you’re prone to losing certain items, such as keys or
eyeglasses, pick a spot and always put the items there when you are not using
·Memory Tip 2: Write things down. If you have
trouble remembering phone numbers or appointments, write them down and place
the list in a conspicuous spot. Making a daily “to do” list will remind you of
important tasks and obligations.
·Memory Tip 3: Say words out loud. Saying “I’ve
turned off the stove” after doing so will give you an extra verbal reminder
when you later try to recall whether the stove is still on. Incorporating
people’s names into the conversation immediately after you have met them helps,
·Memory Tip 4: Use memory aids. Use a pocket
notepad, cell phone, wristwatch alarm, voice recorder or other aids to help
remember what you need to do or to keep track of information.
·Memory Tip 5: Use visual images. When learning
new information, such as a person’s name, create a visual image in your mind to
make the information more vivid and, therefore, more memorable.
·Memory Tip 6: Group items using mnemonics. A
mnemonic is any technique used to help you remember. For example, when
memorizing lists, names, addresses and so on, try grouping them as an acronym.
Another mnemonic technique is an acrostic. Acrostics use the first letter of
each item to create new words that form a sentence or phrase. Using rhymes or
creating stories that connect each element to be remembered is also
·Memory Tip 7: Concentrate and relax. Many
environmental stimuli compete for your attention at any given time. To remember
something, concentrate on the items to be remembered. Pay close attention to
new information and try to avoid or block out distractions. Anxiety and stress
can inhibit recall. Learning a relaxation technique, such as deep breathing or
muscle-relaxing exercises, may help.
·Memory Tip 8: Get plenty of sleep. During sleep
the brain consolidates and firms up newly acquired information. Studies
indicate that people are better at remembering recently learned information the
next day if they have had a good night’s sleep.
·Memory Tip 9: Rule out other causes of memory
loss. If you suspect that you are having memory difficulties, consult your doctor.
Some medical conditions can cause memory problems that can be corrected,
including depression, hearing or vision loss, thyroid dysfunction, certain
medications, vitamin deficiencies and stress.
Posted in Memory on July 4, 2011
I think that the 9
Memory Tips From Johns Hopkins are great, down-to-earth tips. I hope you enjoyed reading them - there’s no excuse not to practice
One of the best ways to help your brain be more fit, is to
make sure your mind is receiving good nutrition for better brain function. The basics for eating a nutritious diet
that’s good for your brain include the following:
Drink half your body weight in non carbonated, preferably
Drink green tea
Know what the right weight is for your body type and eat as
many calories as it takes to maintain that weight
Know what foods you are allergic to and avoid eating them
Consume fresh, unprocessed, local foods
Eat unsaturated fats, especially foods high in omega-3
Eat complex carbohydrates and low-glycemic foods
Use only natural sweeteners
Reduce salt intake and only use sea salt
Eat 9 servings of fruits and vegetables each day
The key to a great brain diet is to put the emphasis on
nutrition. Think of food as fuel for
your head and body instead of thinking of food as a reward, escape or
If you’re serious about eating to remember, you should know
that certain herbs and spices help promote brain health: Turmeric, Saffron extract, Sage and Cinnamon.
Eat thoughtfully, slowly and chew thoroughly. Start your day with a good breakfast and then
continuously snack throughout your day to keep your blood sugar levels up and
Whether you’re volunteering
to keep yourself fully engaged in life while making positive contributions to
society, or you’ve chosen to, or have to, rejoin the workforce - whatever
you do, don’t panic about your new adventure.
Learn how to cope and how to play the workplace games.
People use intimidation and upset to interrupt or impede
your ability to be comfortable; fully participate in the workplace, and to be
at your mental optimum. In Part II of my book, Aging Gracefully, I deal with "Empowerment and Intimidation
Management,” giving a number of important strategies and techniques to deal
with shenanigans – whether they be on purpose or not.
Stay on the alert to recognize
these types of game players:
·The "Word Supplier"
·The “Word Corrector"
·The “Finisher of Sentences”
·The “Look That Is Meant To Embarrass You”
The “Word Supplier or “Word Corrector” is always waiting-in-the-wings
to catch you pausing for a word, or perhaps mispronouncing a word, or using an
incorrect word so they can jump right in to ‘help’ you. The last thing you want
is that their ‘helpfulness’ implies something is wrong with your abilities. To nip-it-in-the-bud, your response to the
know-it-all: Whatever, accompanied by a smile or accompanied by a gesture of
The “Finisher of Sentences” is also waiting around like an
understudy ready to push the leading lady or man off stage at any moment. To stop-them-in-their-tracks, your response
to their rude behavior: Kindly refrain from finishing my sentences. I
prefer to do that. And if the person
who finished your sentence and was completely wrong in their assumption about
what you were going to say then quickly turn the tables with: That’s not what I was going to say. You’re
completely off topic.
And as for the incredibly impolite person who just has to
flash ‘The Look That Is Meant To Embarrass You’ with their raised eyebrows, their
holier-than-thou look, which seems to say, "Where in the world are you
going with this?" or "What in heaven are you trying to say?" Your
response: Stop right there. Of course laughing at them may do it, too.
“The Disrupter” is like a cheetah ready to pounce in a nanosecond,
challenging something you are saying, disrupting your flow, steering you off
topic, and manhandling the direction and conversation in a completely different
direction. Your response, Go on…., (this indicates that you’re on
to them and that you are giving them permission to continue), and then hold on
tight to your thoughts and the points you want to make. (When a friend of mine does this, she holds
her fingers out on one hand to help her remember every point she wants to make
and with the other hand, she keeps track of counter points to The Distrupter’s
conversation.) Another alternative is to
hold up the palm of your hand or index finger to signal "Wait your turn,”
or, “Hold on,” “In a moment," etc. Whatever
you do, when you take over the floor in conversation, take your sweet time to
get out everything you need to say.
Rude people are everywhere so it’s up to you to figure out
your own style of verbal and non-verbal self defense. Some people will get the hint to back off
from trying to take you on. Others are
just ignorant fools and should be recognized as nothing more than specimens of
character study or as fodder to be capitalized on at a later date, (such as
being used for material in a book, play or blog)….
If you stay healthy in mind and
body, you can remain productive well beyond your 80’s. Research shows that a
healthy body results in a healthy mind. But it also works the other way: change
your brain, according to Dr. Amen, and you’ll change your body. Dr.
Amen’s work proves that if you boost your brain, you’ll improve your overall
health, skin, weight and energy! Dr. Amen’s work proves that you can change the brain you were born with for the
Exercise and nutrition greatly affect
mental capacity. Luckily, it’s never too
late to start exercising, eating healthy, or retraining your brain. Getting in
shape and staying in shape are easier than ever. So if you’ve been putting off
any of those things, why wait?
One of the easiest and most vital
things that you can do to keep your brain cells happy so that you maintain high
levels of memory function is to be well oxygenated. Force yourself to yawn and take 4 deep
breaths through your nose. (Other great
ways to get oxygenated include walking, bicycling, dancing, table tennis,
tennis, yoga, etc. In general, aerobic
exercise is great for oxygen intake and blood circulation.) Avoid things that deplete oxygen such as smoking,
chemicals, not sleeping, not eating well and stress.)
Other things that you can start
doing today to help your brain and body: drink lots of water to stay hydrated,
think positive, forgive, practice gratitude, connect with others, hum or sing,
and learn something new, (even if learning something new means learning a new
The message is simple: take good
care of your mind and body.