We all have bad memories, but that doesn’t make it any less embarrassing to forget. It’s awkward when something slips your mind. The worst part is that you can fully intend to remember something – a fact, an anniversary, a name – only for it to evaporate from your mind.
Out of everything you experience, you only remember a sliver. A sharp mind captures the useful slivers and discards the rest.
Can self-hypnosis improve your memory? Absolutely. First, though, you need to figure out how you’re forgetting.
Let’s take a classic: forgetting someone’s name after meeting them once. There’s a few ways something like this can slip your mind:
All of these are “forgetting”, yet they’re quite different.
You can think of memory as a three-step process: you notice something, you encode it in your mind, then you retrieve it when needed. This might be oversimplifying things, but it’ll do. This gives us a framework to play with.
If you forget like (1) above, then it’s a failure of noticing. In that case, you want your self-hypnosis to focus on being present, curious and engaged in the outside world.
If you forget like (2) above, then it’s a failure of encoding. In that case, you want your self-hypnosis to help you see the world with fresh eyes. You forgot their name because it wasn’t “interesting” or “important” – yet how can that be when everything is interesting and important? Learn to see things the way a child might – full of wonder and mystery.
If you forget like (3) above, then it’s a failure of retrieval. The reason it’s easier to recall a name after the conversation ends is you’re not scrambling for it. If so, your self-hypnosis should focus on being calm and having clarity, especially during conversations.
There you have it – free strategies to improve your memory. Take them or leave them.
Of course, they only work if you know how to hypnotise yourself.
Because while I could design a program that’ll improve your memory for you… isn’t it better to learn this yourself? Then you won’t have to rely on anyone.
Everything you need to know about self-hypnosis (including how to apply it) is right here: