4 Ways to Improve Memory and Attention

Our brain is a complex mechanism consisting of billions of nerve cells and trillions of connections between them. All of our activities: actions, thoughts, desires, ideas – originate in the gray matter. Memory and attention are among the basic skills the brain possesses. And they, like any other skills, can be pumped up. These tips will help you remember new information better and be more concentrated.

Solve Everyday Tasks in Unconventional Ways

There is a common myth that nerve cells don’t regenerate. This isn’t true, and scientists proved long ago that neurons are formed in the brain matter until old age. But the number of cells isn’t what matters.

All our thoughts, movements – in a word, any mental activity – are the product of interaction between nerve cells. One cell can’t produce a thought. But a sequence of several cells can. The same principle is used by the now popular neural networks and machine learning. To make a simple analogy, one letter means nothing, but a sequence of letters is a word or a whole phrase. It’s the same in the brain.

That’s why it isn’t the number of cells or their ability to regenerate that matters, but the number of connections between them. New connections are new associations, ideas and thoughts. The more often we perform routine tasks in a standard, long-established way, the fewer new connections are formed in the brain. On the one hand, this is convenient: stereotypical solutions to everyday tasks use up less energy. But on the other hand, this way we deprive the brain of new information and impressions, and therefore of new connections between neurons. The brain seems to work in energy-saving mode – memory deteriorates, thinking becomes less creative.

The easiest thing to do is to constantly find new routes. Make detours, enter unfamiliar yards, look for new paths. The way to work or the nearest store won’t give the brain anything new. But a new road is a great way to start the gears in the brain.

Learn Foreign Languages

A foreign language isn’t just a way to communicate with people from another culture. Each language encodes the way of thinking of the people who speak it. Or in other words: mentality. 

New vocabulary, grammar, and syntax give the brain the ability to form a huge number of new connections and associations. Having to constantly memorize unfamiliar words trains your memory – just like a muscle in the gym.

And for memorization, you can use a variety of mnemonic techniques that improve memory. For example, the method of visual associations or the method of spatial memorization.

Turn Disadvantages of the Psyche Into Advantages

One of the biggest disadvantages of our brain’s structure is its single-tasking nature. Not all of us were destined to be multi-tasking Caesars, and therefore most of us can only focus on one thing at a time-otherwise our efficiency is severely diminished.

And yet while working we often surround ourselves with many distractions, be it a smartphone at hand, a new online baccarat live dealer game, music or a TV series in the background, conversations with colleagues and friends. The list goes on and on. Attention becomes distracted, the brain has to spend too many resources on constantly switching from one task to another. In the long run, this state of affairs will lead to cognitive impairment.

That’s why it’s important to handle your psyche properly. When taking on any task, you should try to shield yourself from everything that can distract your attention. Set your smart phone to silent mode, turn off all unnecessary screens, and turn down the music. This way the brain will not have to work to its capacity, and all its energies will be focused on the main task. If you make it a habit, with time your attention and ability to concentrate will become better.

The brain should be given a break from time to time so it can replenish the resources expended. Relax the flow of incoming information to trigger internal processes. A good way to do this is to have a digital detox. For example, completely give up gadgets at the weekend, devoting time to sports, walks and meditation. This way the brain can use the energy that is spent on processing signals from stimuli the rest of the time.

Read More 

In today’s world we consume new information through reading less and less frequently – auditory and visual methods are taking center stage. Podcasts, lectures, videos, movies, TV shows, memes, and tweets load the brain and give food for thought. The problem is that this way of perceiving information is passive. The brain does not perform any active actions: it doesn’t need to choose intonations or draw images in the head, everything is already there in the headphones and on the screen – and the psyche just needs to observe. Something remains in the memory, but most of it doesn’t stay for a long time.

When we read, various brain systems are actively involved. We spell out the text, improving diction and auditory memory, which is why it’s best to read aloud, so the effect will be even more noticeable. Reading develops language observation, active vocabulary, and visualization skills. The whole process tones the brain, which stimulates the improvement of its abilities.