Advanced Mental Training to Maximise your Success

3 Breathtaking Things to Know About Your Brain and Memory

Author – Marc Green

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Read those values.

Have you ever been in a situation where you question what you ate for dinner last night, and literally cannot recall? After minutes of pondering, sometimes it may click, whereas other times a friend or family member may have to remind you of the food you ate, or you have to think of something which symbolizes the food. For example, maybe you ate roast lamb (sorry vegans!) and see a lamb on television which triggers your memory of you eating lamb – only if, for whatever reason, you were actually trying to remember what you ate for dinner last night. On the other hand, maybe you just list all the different foods you typically eat and pinpoint the one which you ate last night – or you have adapted to a certain eating pattern that it’s just second nature for you to know what you ate for dinner last night, which, to be honest, is kind of boring; where’s your sense of adventure?! 

Now, let me ask you another question. At what point did you suddenly forget what you ate for dinner? Was it minutes after eating it? Did the memory slowly begin to vanish, or was it sudden? Or do you simply not know, or even care? Maybe you just need to eat something better. Just kidding … but seriously. 

Memories of something trivial, such as that poor, innocent lamb you ate for dinner last night is a part of the visual memory. This type of memory largely impacts the daily life of a typical person. It performs simple tasks such as allowing us to remember the face of someone, remembering where you last placed your wallet (or purse), and most importantly: remembering where your phone (and keys, for that matter) was last placed. As you can see, our visual memory is terrible. Okay – so maybe that isn’t true. Without the ability to visually remember things (or an adequate comprehension), wouldn’t we just be blind humans with working eyes? Imagine walking past a stranger, and instantly forgetting their face, gender, etc. That is, of course, providing no interaction was present whatsoever.

So, now you may be asking yourself, “Well, what about blind people?” which is a very good question. Blind people are far superior with memory than those who aren’t blind, which may be surprising to some of you (or not). As blind people have no visual input, this is their brain’s way of making up for their lack of visual perception. They are able to remember words far better than most people, with less ‘false’ memories. They remember in other ways, such as smell, feel, taste and sound. Obviously there are other contributing factors to their memory ability, such as if they were blind from birth, being a major one. 

So, why are we often unable to remember such typical things, like what we ate for dinner last night? Unfortunately this is a daily occurrence in the everyday life – it’s because essentially our brain hates information; long term, anyway. Have you ever wondered why most HAVE to study to pass a test? It’s because the information is stored in your short term memory and will essentially be wiped or considered obsolete as new information is stored. There is no instant cure to this terrible, terrible illness, unfortunately – other than retraining your brain and memory. 

That being said: just because you forget about something does not mean it has been removed from your brain forever, which is something people are often unaware of. It simply means you are unable to retrieve given information which has been stored in your long-term memory at any given point. Just because you can’t remember what you ate for dinner last night doesn’t mean you won’t remember just before falling asleep. 

Okay, now let me test you. Remember the seven different values I wrote at the top of this article that you were probably extremely puzzled about when initially reading? If you don’t remember reading them at all, then I sincerely hope you get checked out! Seriously though; presuming you read over them, or at least glanced at them: I want you to recite them WITHOUT looking back. If you can do this, then you’re a cheater. 

So, without further ado, I present information as to WHY you may find yourself in similar situations previously mentioned (forgetting keys, where your phone was last situated, what you ate for dinner, etc.). 

1 – Your Brain Hates You… Kind of.

Firstly, it’s not because you happened, for some unknown and doubtless unprecedented reason, to be particularly short of active braincells at this point (although that may be a contributing factor) but because of several other factors. One of the most common reasons many are unable to remember specific information is because, essentially, it’s not life-threatening. Basically, your brain doesn’t REALLY care about where you left your car keys; it only cares for survival. You might care (which will improve your memory) but your brain certainly opposes it. Have you noticed how you never forget to drink water (or any form of liquid)? It’s because your body forces you to be reminded of these things as a form of survival. I have said it once, and I’ll say it again: your brain couldn’t care less about your phone – as much to your disgust, simply because you can live without it. 

2 – Learn Properly!

Although your brain hating you remembering things is a significant reason as to why many have poor long-term memories, there are several other less significant factors contributing to your poor memory, such as not learning the information correctly. For example: studying for a test. Maybe you were too distracted or only remembered small parts which made it hard for the rest of the information to make any sense. Or maybe you simply didn’t understand the information logically at all, and it was simply all words to you. Don’t worry, you’re not alone! So essentially you never actually learned this information correctly to begin with, so obviously you won’t be able to remember it… if it was never stored in the first place, right? Having the passion and motivation to remember information is going to enhance your memory because you desire learning of the new information. Make sense? 

3 – Stop Repeating Yourself!

Furthermore, as you learn and remember more and more things, those new things could interfere with past memories resulting in a loss of memory.  For example: have you ever been to… say… a significant location twice, and don’t remember which time you went when ‘that something’ happened? Maybe you went to a theme park twice in your life, and can’t recall at which time a certain ride was broken down. That is probably a poor example, but one I hope you can grasp and actually makes sense. 

Conclusion

As you may have been able to establish from this article, your brain really doesn’t like to learn new things uncritical to your life. As a result, I hand it to all the doctors, lawyers, engineers and other ‘advanced professions’ (sorry art professionals!) having to learn new information for years upon years just to become what they want. I certainly couldn’t do it! So with those three tips mentioned earlier, you should be well on your way to enhancing your memory skills.

 

http://www.widermemory.com

 

“Brain Training” games don’t work

At last there is the evidence that brain training games don’t boost brain power. (BBC report)

When doing radio interviews, the most common question I am asked is how good are these electronic games recently promoted to improve brain function.  My reply is always the same…doing lots of sudoku puzzles simply makes you good at doing sudoku.  There is no wider neurological benefit which can be applied to other tasks.

If you want to train your brain, you need to

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Theta brainwaves essential for memory

From Reuters:

Scientists find how relaxed minds remember better.

Stronger and more lasting memories are likely to be formed when a person is relaxed and the memory-related neurons in the brain fire in sync with certain brain waves, scientists said on Wednesday….

…Synchronization in the brain is influenced by “theta waves” which are associated with relaxation, daydreaming and drowsiness, but also with learning and memory formation, the scientists explained in the study in the journal Nature.”

Accessing the theta brainwave is an integral part of the memory training I provide.  Memory techniques on their own are not enough. During both the memorisation and recall process, you need to increase theta brainwave activity and get both hemispheres balanced.

This research reinforces that The Brain Training Company is teaching cutting edge techniques.

You can only develop a really powerful memory with integrated brainwave training.  See the popular Mind Maximiser training course for more information on this subject.  Here you learn the techniques of memory and how to control your brainwave activity.

Have you tried a memory  training system or attended a course?  Did you learn how to access the theta state on demand and have this shown to you on an EEG system?

On a separate yet related matter, did you know that you need to be able to access a high-alpha state for speed reading?  So for effective learning skills, it is critical to be able to shift between the high-alpha and theta brainwave states (as well as other elements taught in the training course).

What happens in an actor’s brain?

This is a fascinating article from the BBC.  It looks at what an actor’s brain is doing during a performance.

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By Nick Higham
Today programme

Original article here with additional video and images.

For an actor, the performance conditions weren’t exactly ideal: flat on her back in a large machine, under strict instructions to lie as still as possible, speaking in short bursts interspersed with the shrill sound of a magnetic resonance imaging scanner.

But last week Fiona Shaw, one of Britain’s leading actresses – who has in her time played everything from the tragic heroine Medea to Shakespeare’s Richard II – volunteered in the cause of science to spend an hour having her brain scanned while “acting”.

Professor Sophie Scott of the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London wanted to know what happens physically in an actor’s head when they pretend to be someone else.

She hoped that scanning Fiona’s brain in action would be able to tell us.

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2009 World Memory Championships – the result

The 2009 World Memory Championships have finished.  It was an exciting three days of competition, with some new world records being set and great performances from many new names.  Here are the results:

1 Ben Pridmore
2 Johannes Mallow
3 Simon Reinhard

4 Dr. Gunther Karsten
5 Wang Feng
6 Su Ruiqiao
7 Cornelia Beddies
8 Boris Konrad
9 Guo Chuanwei
10 Yuan Wenkui

Congratulations to Ben Pridmore for successfully defending his 2008 title.  Dorothea Seitz is the Junior World Champion.  It has been announced that next year the World Memory Championships will be held in China.

Interview with World Memory Champion

The current World Memory Champion, Ben Pridmore, is interviewed as he attempts to retain his title at the 2009 World Memory Championships.

[vimeo]http://www.vimeo.com/7573065[/vimeo]

To follow all of the posts related to the 2009 World Memory Championships, please click on this tag link link I have created to group all the posts together:

http://www.thebraintrainingcompany.com/tag/wmc2009/

If you would like to train your memory, then the Mind Maximizer course is for you.

WMC 2009 – New World Record: Abstract Images

Dr. Gunther Carsten has just set the first new World Record of the 2009 World Memory Championships…

Event: Abstract Images
Record: 318 Abstract Images in 15 minutes

During the World Memory Championships there are a series of events testing different memory skills.  Some involve memorising numbers, playing cards, numbers, events or names and faces.  This event was memorising abstract images.  Competitors are given 15 minutes to memorise as many of the provided abstract images as possible.  They then have 45 minutes to recall them.

Gunther managed to correctly memorise 318 abstract images in the 15 minutes.

This is a great start to the World Memory Championships and puts Gunther into first place at this stage.

To follow all of the posts related to the 2009 World Memory Championships, please click on this tag link link I have created to group all the posts together:

http://www.thebraintrainingcompany.com/tag/wmc2009/

If you would like to train your memory, then the Mind Maximizer course is for you.

Memory World Record: Speed Cards

As the 2009 World Memory Championships are currently underway, I thought it would be fun to see just how good the competitors are…

Memorising a single deck of cards in the fastest time:

In July 2009, Ben Pridmore became the first person to memorise a deck of cards in under 30 seconds (26.28 seconds).  In August 2009 he broke that record again to set an astounding time of 24.97 seconds.

To put that into context, here is a brief explanation…

  1. You are giving a single deck of shuffled cards.
  2. Against the clock, you look through the cards, with the clock stopping when you put the cards face down (that establishes your time)
  3. To test that you memorised the order of the cards, you are then given a new deck of cards.  You have to place these cards in the order of the deck you just memorised.
  4. The judge / arbiter then checks your original, memorised deck, against the pack you have just placed in the memorised order
  5. If you get this correct, your original memorisation time (step 2) is approved.

Makes sense?

Well with that in mind (no pun intended) have a look at this video of Ben Pridmore setting the World Record.  And no, it is not speeded up in any way.  Yes, he is scanning the cards that quickly!

[vimeo]http://www.vimeo.com/6270043[/vimeo]

Would you like to learn how to improve your memory?  Then take a look at the Mind Maximiser course.

World Memory Championships 2009

The World Memory Championships for 2009 have started today. It is being held in London and has the largest prize purse in the history of the event – $92,000.  It us running from Thursday 12th November through to Saturday 14th November.

My friend and business associate, Dominic O’Brien, is at the event as one of the event organisers.  Dominic has been World Memory Champion eight times and now dedicates himself to helping others improve their memory.  Dominic will be giving me news during the event, which I will post here.

The official website for the event is here:  World Memory Championships

To follow all of the posts related to the 2009 World Memory Championships, please click on this tag link link I have created to group all the posts together:

http://www.thebraintrainingcompany.com/tag/wmc2009/

If you would like to train your memory, then the Mind Maximizer course is for you.