You don’t necessarily have to suffer from a condition like dementia or Alzheimer’s to experience issues with information retention or memory loss. The truth is that eventually all of us start to lose some ability to retain or recall information. It could be related to the onward march of time and the inevitable aging process, or it may have more to do with the sheer amount of data we are exposed to on a daily basis as part of the busy modern lifestyle and our access to electronics. But either way, the end result is that you can’t recall what someone said to you five minutes ago or the paragraph you just finished reading. Luckily, your brain is somewhat like a muscle in that you can exercise it in order to improve its function. Here are a few tips that could help you to improve your memory.
- Be aware. The life of a modern adult is often so busy, entailing such a huge amount of sensory input, that it’s only natural that our brains would struggle to take it all in and end up filtering out all but the most important data. And if you’re not adept at multitasking to begin with, you could find yourself having an abundance of memory problems. But being scatterbrained isn’t a hopeless situation. You can improve retention dramatically by simply becoming more aware of your penchant for attention lapses. When people are telling you things, when you’re reading, or anytime it’s important that you remember something, tell yourself to pay attention. Repeat the information. Raising your situational awareness can make a big difference when it comes to remembering things.
- Get organized. Because the modern adult has such a hectic lifestyle, what with working, commuting, raising a family, managing a household, and more, it’s all too easy to let things slip through the cracks. But a sound organizational strategy could really free up your mind to think about other things. Without the distraction of trying to remember schedules, tasks, chores, and so on, you could gain a lot more focus to devote to whatever you’re doing right now, improving your memory in the process.
- Get your zees. Sleep is an essential factor when it comes to peak mental performance, but most of us don’t get the recommended eight hours a night. Or even if we do, we suffer from fitful, interrupted slumber. Finding ways to ensure a solid night of sleep can make a world of difference where your memory and focus are concerned.
- Diet and exercise. You are what you eat, metaphorically speaking, and the foods and beverages you choose to consume can definitely play a role in your mental health. A balanced diet is a good place to start, and believe it or not, cutting back on caffeine is a good idea, as well. The ups and downs you experience with caffeine can give you a boost initially but leave you even less mentally adroit in short order. And caffeine intake can contribute to sleeplessness. However, you should also pursue physical fitness. It can boost your overall energy, help you to sleep better, and even clear your mind of noise and distractions.
- Play memory games. If you want to train your brain in order to improve retention and recall, there is no shortage of memory games available to help you out. However, you might want to look into a targeted program that uses a combination of testing and training to ensure progress when it comes to improving your memory.