Although we constantly learn something throughout our lives, we forget most of it over time. However, we are expected to remember everything we learned in the lessons, especially during exam periods. “Why do we forget?” let’s learn about it.
Why Do We Forget?
Forgetting can actually be thought of as a defense mechanism. In fact, your brain is forgetting to protect you from overloading you with useless information. Imagine remembering everything… What an unbearable life that would be.
In other words, your brain puts everything you have learned into short-term memory as a defense mechanism and makes you forget this information by not transferring it to long-term memory unless you do it again.
There is a universal formula developed by Hermann Ebbinghaus to easily remember what you have learned:
The Ebbinghaus Forgetting Curve shows that we forget more than half of the information we have acquired just one hour after learning, and only remember 20% after a week. According to Ebbinghaus, forced memorization is not effective. Because your brain cannot quickly grasp the things you are trying to memorize and cannot make strong associations between them. For the things you want to put into long-term memory, you need to repeat them at certain times.
To be more specific, it would be better if we start studying for a rote test a few days before, rather than the day before. There are many methods we can try to work more efficiently.
1) Try to understand what you have learned : Memorizing what you understand makes it easier for your brain to find associations. Thus, this information can be transferred to long-term memory nine times faster.
2) Find out the time to study that is optimal for you: The best time to learn is when you are undivided and energetic. Some people find it more productive to study early in the morning, while others find it more efficient to study late at night. Find the most productive time for you and work at that time.
3) Learn the most necessary information: You must set your priorities correctly and work accordingly. Remember, the information learned at the beginning and at the end is more memorable.
4) Choose only the best materials: Do not use outdated books and outdated learning techniques. We live in a world that is constantly changing and evolving, and a lot may have changed after the release of old books. Don’t waste your time on something that could be wrong right now.
5) Tell someone what you need to learn: Working together is not an ideal method for everyone. If you like to work alone, you can make it more memorable by reading aloud what you need to learn and explaining it to yourself in the mirror. If you do not have problems working with others, you can get mutual benefits by telling them.
6) Relate what you have learned to specific spaces: In other words, create your own palace of mind. For example, if you are working in your room, associate something you learned with an item in your room and repeat it several times. Next, remember how the room looks in your memory.
7) Learn opposite things: You can strengthen your memory by learning something with its opposite. For example, when learning a foreign language, try to learn duals such as coming/going, day/night.
8) Use related words: The main point of this technique known as “Nail Words” is to work by connecting different things. So when you remember one, you will be able to remember all the other information you have connected with.
9) Make connections between what you just learned and what you already know: This makes it easier for you to understand what you’ve just learned. Thus, the memorability of the information increases.
10) Make up stories: If you need to learn many things in a particular order, create a story and sprinkle what you need to learn into the story in the correct order. The point you need to pay attention to is to ensure that the information you sprinkle is connected with each other in the flow of the story.
11) Use a recording device: This technique is for you, especially if you are a learner by hearing. Record the information you are learning with a voice recorder. Then listen a few more times.
12) Visualize: When learning something, use your body language so you can activate your muscle memory as well.