Always blanking on people’s names? “We all do it, regardless of our age,” says Kelly Murphy, a clinical neuropsychologist who specializes in memory and aging at Baycrest Health Sciences in Toronto. Training your brain to remember names is a great memory-building exercise (and is helpful at parties). Here are five tricks to try:
For example, the name Rose might make you think of the flower. “This could be all it takes, but research has shown that adding more layers of personal meaning make it more likely to stick,” says Murphy. Maybe Rose has red hair, for example, and reminds you of the red roses that used to grow in your grandmother’s garden.
2. Spell it out
When introduced, spell the name in your head — picturing the letters helps commit them to memory (even better, picture it written across their forehead).
This word-play trick makes names easy to remember (smiling Sue) and can also be tied to association (Valerie from Vancouver).
“Al is your pal” or “Dale works in sales”: The singsong quality makes a name harder to forget. Repeat the rhyme in your head to really commit it to memory (even better, say it out loud).
5. Write it down
Jot the name down on a piece of paper or, for greater staying power, create a contact sheet in your phone.
Do you use any tips or tricks that weren’t mentioned here? Tell us about them in the comment section below.
For more great ways to maximize your memory click here.