Having already learned the locations of most of the countries of the world, I decided to tackle the capitals. I searched and searched online and was unable to find any free mnemonics for learning this, so I decided to make up my own, which it turns out really is the best way. The few that I did find online, I found I was unable to make those stick in my head because I didn’t make them up myself.
If anyone is interested, this is the method I used…
First I printed out an alphabetical list of the countries with their capitals. I started with Afghanistan (CABLE knit AFGHAN ) , and briefly wrote on my printout the mnemonic I was using for each.
This was going great, but I found that throughout my day I wanted to try to practice and I couldn’t recall all the countries, so I changed my tack a bit. I decided that I needed to put the countries in a memory palace. This made things so, so much easier.
After this it went quickly ( worked on it here and there over 7 days). So now, not only can I recall the capitals, I can also name all the countries in alphabetical order.
A word on the memory palace that I used… Originally I had planned on using 10 memory palaces to place historical events. Each decade is at a place that relates to the decade. For instance 00-09 was an apartment I lived In during some of those years. 50-59 is at an ice cream “malt” shop that reminds me of the 1950s. I decided instead to put the countries and capitals in these 10 palaces. Each palace has 10 locations, each location as two countries/capitals.
Another thing I learned during this exercise, is that using people or concrete objects works so much better than trying to use an abstract phrase or idea.
So now I’m starting to make visuals of my mnemonics (don’t know if I’ll finish because that’s a lot of countries). I don’t really know how to attach a picture, but If anyone is interested, I made a separate Twitter account for memory purposes where these can be found @memorizingisfun