The Mind Tricks Your Brain Plays When It Comes To Memory

What we constantly convince ourselves is we can remember a certain event like it was yesterday. We can vividly recall every detail of that event, good or bad, and it will appear in our consciousness. What’s for certain is major events can be recalled, such as your wedding. Anything beyond that is questionable.

Often, we’ll argue with someone about a past event you’ve shared with them. You’re both absolutely convinced your recollection is right and the other is wrong.

We like to believe that our memory is precise, intact, reliable, stable, preserved and waiting for us to recall any event at will, over and over again. We like to think our brain has photographic memory.

We also like to think our thought processes, whether we’re reflecting back on a memory or something that just occurred, are completely rational, reliable, and conscious.

Living A Life Of Delusion

What’s known is this always isn’t the case, and far from it. Our brains are constantly bombarded by external stimuli, more than it can handle on a daily basis. It’s just too busy and can’t really multi-task.

As a result, our brain becomes frantic as it needs to constantly connect the dots, by filling in the empty blanks for our recall. All while trying to keep track of what’s happening in the current world around us.

What we happened to store in our memory in the past, is nothing but a shorthanded version, a notation of that moment, which took place outside our immediate thinking.

What we’re doing is taxing our brain further, by forcing it to recall something that occurred in the past history of our life. Such as when you first met your spouse, the events which led to getting that job.

Know it’s not actually retrieving the memory itself. What it’s doing is scrambling to intact back together, attempting to retrieve the scattered puzzle pieces of the experience by stapling it back together.

There’s also subconscious bias, which will influence how our brain recalls these events of the past.

Hindsight Is 20/20

Our brains are in the business of attempting to make sense of the immediate happenings around us. It also needs to recall the events of our past, the encounters we’ve had, and do so as accurately as possible.

This happens on autopilot, as our minds will subconsciously and automatically do so at will, at any moment, even before we realize it.

Those extraordinary events that appeared surprising at first, ultimately appears unsurprising or at times predictable. This process is referred to as hindsight.

This could be something that altered ours or someone else’s life, such as the global financial crisis, the winning play of the last Superbowl game, the day your first child was born.

What we do is find ourselves saying, that’s the exact outcome I predicted. “I knew it would turn out that way.”

Since the event already occurred, our earliest memories on what happened might be vague. Then once we’re reminded of it, we arrogantly say we knew what took place all along.

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We Think We Can Predict The Future

The bias of hindsight, makes these events appear more explicable and predictable than they actually are. As a result, the world we live in appears more stable.

Hence the reason why we do the Monday morning quarterbacking. “I just knew this project wasn’t going to work out. It was doomed to failure, because we approached the marketing all wrong.”

Or, “I knew that she was going to leave me. She’s was just too unforgiving and impatient.”

The value of hindsight is it makes the world we live in appear less chaotic, and it tends to soothe us when we get upset.

The bad news of all this, is what hindsight does is feeds bias into our tendencies, forcing us to over simplify situations. We also get in the way of we thinking about what really happened.

How To Memorize Better

To memorize is storing information somewhere in the brain for later recall and reuse. The definition of memory is the ability, the power or the act of remembering.

Remembering is to recall, bringing a previous thought or event to our conscious minds.

Most are able to memorize certain things temporarily, but will forget about them once they’re no longer of use or important.

This occurs once a student studies for an exam, on a subject they have no interest in, just to pass the exam.

The growing minds of children need to memorize names, colors, multiplication, the alphabet.

This information becomes important in their daily lives, and becomes critical as the grades and learning in school advances.

Keys To Improving Memory

There are several forces which can affect our memory. It’s been found our diet can play a major effect on impairing memory, usually at the most inopportune times. Another known cause of memory failure is the lack of physical exercise.

There are also the foreign substances, the toxins which enters our bodies which restricts or delays how we remember and recall.

These can be too much sugar, alcohol, or the side effects of certain medication which can have a negative effect.

There are also traumatic events and injuries which can affect our memory, as can diseases and old age.

Inadequate mental along with spiritual stimulation appears to have an influence as well.

Internal Influences

There are certain known life stresses which are connected to memory impairment, as there’s too much chaos for the brain to handle everything effectively.

For instance if you live a life that’s full of turmoil and stress on a daily basis, or you’re unorganized or over scheduled with activities. You don’t care about your health or welfare that much. Your memory will suffer.

It then becomes a process which needs time to repair and recover. You need to become more aware of your priorities.

Realize how well you care for your mind and body. It can be solved and be as easy as a quick workout at the gym, this to get your memory back on track.

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