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Hermine Hilton's new book that will help you stop worrying about your memory (& Alzheimer's)

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Tips On Improving Your Memory

I'm retired and felt, like most, that as you get older your mind is not as sharp as it once was ... thanks to The Hilton Memory Seminar for dispelling that myth, as I am not only just as sharp as I ever was, I'm even more so."

Hilton Memory Seminar Participant

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A good memory is a priceless asset. Whether one is born with this aptitude or not, the Memory Tip Sheet will help you to improve your memory and make you more effective.

  • Your eye and your ear do not do the learning; only the mind does the learning. This is why we often cannot remember a person's name or a telephone number within seven seconds of the time we see or hear it.
  • All memory happens by connecting the new to the known. If we care to remember something there must be a conscious mental connection made between what the eye is seeing or the ear is hearing and something already known in the mind.
  • The connection itself is called the Mnemonic (pronounced NE-MON-IK).
  • Example:If you want to remember that the first letter in Mnemonic is an "M," you could connect this fact to your prior knowledge that the first letter in Memory is also an "M." Making this Mnemonic connection will help you to remember the spelling.

  • There is a big difference between learning and repetition. If you merely repeat something over and over it is mechanical (Rote) and will not stick in your memory.
  • Example: Although your eye has repeatedly seen a Lincoln penny, can you remember which profile of Lincoln's, right or left, is on the penny?

    When trying to remember a person's name, we must make a relatable connection between the name we are hearing and something familiar to us.

    Put the name into a category: Do you know someone else with the same name? Is it familiar or the same as a word in the dictionary?

    Does it sound like a familiar phrase? Or a product name?

    Example: My name is Hermine Hilton: to remember Hilton, you might think of a Hilton Hotel. My first name Hermine (pronounced HER-MEEN) is in the dictionary as two words - Her and Mean. Think of Her Mean memory seminar at the Hilton Hotel and you will have a way to consciously (mnemonically) recall my name.

  • To remember isolated details (telephone numbers, addresses, etc.), we also must make mental connections. We do this by looking for something familiar to us within the numbers themselves.

    Example: The telephone number to call "Hilton Memory" in Los Angeles was 213|824.3333*. Make this connection: 2 plus 1 equals 3 will help you to remember the Los Angeles area code. Thinking 8 hours in a work day and 24 hours in a day will lock in the first three digits, 8—24. To remember the telephone number ends with four 3s think that after working 8 hours in a 24-hour day, you are Free, Free, Free, Free to go home. "Free" sounds like "Three." After working 8 hours in a 24 hour day you are 3333.

    *Note: Since this example was written, Hilton Memory has a new phone number. It is 310|589.9393

  • Absent-mindedness is a very common occurrence for all of us and can be corrected. Absent-mindedness is a result of the mind being absent or not consciously alert to what we are seeing, hearing, or thinking.

    Example: In order to avoid forgetting where you left your keys, you should, at the time you put your keys down, take a moment to make a mental picture of what the physical eye is seeing. If you put the keys on the dining-room table, transfer the picture the eye is seeing to the "mind's eye" (the mind is like the film in the camera). Then close your eyes and you will still be able to mentally "see" the keys on the table. Make the mental picture and you'll remember where the keys are. Don't take the picture and the result is absent-mindedness (and lots of frustration), because there's no film in the camera.

  • It is not true that age causes you to lose your memory. Do not blame memory loss on age. If you know how to use your memory and learn to make mental Mnemonic connections for recall, memory will improve with age because you will have more knowledge, vocabulary, and experience to mentally connect to.
  • Don't make jokes about your memory. When you make jokes about your memory, your subconscious mind picks up your messages and sends a self-fulfilling prophecy. Don't think and say things you do not want to happen.
  • Organize mentally any list of things you must remember by initialing them into words or acronyms.

    Example: If you wanted to buy dental floss, nasal spray, apples, and honey at the market, you could rearrange the list order and think of the word HAND:

    • H—Honey
    • A—Apples
    • N—Nasal Spray
    • D—Dental Floss
    Then, when you leave the market, all the things you need will be in your hand.
  • When learning foreign vocabulary, always look for reminder words in your native tongue. There is no new word, foreign or otherwise, that won't remind you of one you already know. Just think about it.
  • Fear of forgetting makes us forget. We often suffer mental blocks before giving speeches or taking exams, simply because we are afraid we won't remember. In reality, this is like sending "forget" messages to the brain. Then when we try to force ourselves to remember, we make it even worse. The problem is that we didn't make a conscious mental connection in the first place when new information was presented. If we "get" it in the beginning, we will not "forget" it in the end.
  • Hermine smiling on stage Think of your memory as a muscle. The more you exercise it, the stronger it gets. You can keep it exercised by continuing to create Mnemonic connections from the new to the known. Practice mentally relating every day with the new names, numbers, and facts you see and hear. You'll not only have fun, you'll enjoy a wonderful memory.

And always remember: Your memory can be your best friend; all you have to do is connect with it.

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