Senior moments or brain hiccups. Doesn’t matter what you call them, those temporary lapses of memory can range from trying to terrifying.
But I’ve got some good news. Experts say they likely aren’t the first signs of dementia you worry they might be.
In fact, more often than not it’s operating on autopilot that triggers them. It’s when we just aren’t paying close attention.
But it’s not your imagination. They do tend to happen more often as we age. Which means senior moments can start to interfere with your freedom and independence.
Unless you do something to stop them, that is.
Improve memory and never forget another thing
Today I’m going to share with you six research-backed brain hacks scientists say could help give you the steel trap brain of your dreams.
Say goodbye to senior moments and with these easy tricks to improve memory…
1. Give a pop quiz:
Sure, you dreaded them in school. But it turns out pop quizzes can do more for you than just show you what you learned. They can literally help train your brain to store and access information.
In a study conducted at Washington University in St. Louis, MO, researchers tested a group of student volunteers immediately after they had learned some new information. The students who got the pop quiz had far better recall when tested a second time than those who had not taken the quiz.
You don’t have a teacher to spring a test on you any longer. But that doesn’t mean you can’t quiz yourself to improve memory. The next time you learn something new stop and mentally quiz yourself on the details soon after. It will help you cement the info in your memory.
2. “Play it again Sam”:
I bet you think that quote above is from the 1942 film Casablanca. But the truth is it’s a misquote. The real one is, “Play it once, Sam.” Which you might actually have been able to recall if you’d been using this next brain hack.
A report by Dartmouth University revealed a highly effective trick to improve memory. If you’re able to review or “relearn” new information repeatedly over the course of a few days in different situations, it helps your brain retain the new facts.
So, for example, maybe you see a story on the evening news one night. You then look it up online and read it the next morning while sipping on your coffee. Then the following afternoon you grab a newspaper and read the story to a friend over lunch. That repeated exposure in a variety of situations will help you store the memory solidly in your mental database.
3. Clench your fists:
Ready for a weird one? Researchers at Montclair University in New Jersey discovered that making a fist activates the learning and recall centers in your brain.
The key is picking the right fist and the right time. When you’re learning new information, grip your right hand. When it’s time to remember something, clench your left.
Go ahead and try it. I know it might feel a little silly at first. But you’ll be amazed at how effective it can be to improve memory.
4. Speak up:
The Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition reports that SAYING whatever information you need to remember will help you remember it.
And the kicker is you don’t even have to be loud about it. Whispering or even just mouthing that name or address you want to remember can be enough to help it stick.
5. Play video games:
Want to improve memory and have loads of fun doing it? Shock and delight your grandkids by getting good at video games.
Studies have linked video games, especially the 3D looking ones, to higher amounts of gray matter. And we’ve known for years that more gray matter means sharper memory.
6. Use your inner eye:
It’s happened to all of us. You walk into a room and immediately forget why you’re there. But with this next trick to improve memory, it doesn’t have to happen ever again.
From now on, before you ever take a step, visualize whatever you’re doing in the other room. I mean REALLY picture picking up the item or doing the action you intend to do in that room. And only once you’ve envisioned it should you move from your spot.
She is an advocate of self-education and is passionate about the power of group knowledge sharing, like the kind found right here on HealthierTalk.com. Alice loves to share her views on holistic and natural healing as well as her, sometimes contentious, thoughts on the profit-driven inner workings of traditional medicine.
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