A law students journey to a better memory


I figured that it would be good to create journal where I can get some insight from the more knowledgeable members of the forum as well as writing down my my progress.

I am currently doing a master in Law and realized that anything that could help me achieve a better study environment is positive. I have been thinking about learning certain techniques about memory but I have always been able to, in some way or another, remember what I need to know.

The realization came to me quite early that I do not have a good technique for memorization and that leads to me having a hard time to remember large quantities of information that is needed.

I started by researching books from memory champions and other authors who I read great reviews about. I think I have almost every book written by Dominic O’brien as well as his audio book (haven’t started listening to it yet) as well as several other authors such as Kevin Horsley, Chester Santos, Lynne Kelly, Tony Buzan and Helmut Sach. As a matter of fact, I think that I might have too many books for my own good.

I started to use the memory of loci for when I was going for groceries and it really helped in that matter. I am no longer arriving home and suddenly realizing that I forgot to buy something.

I’ve began using mind mapping again and “colour-coding” it to make it a bit more “pleasant” for the eye so to say when I am reading books and I believe that it works rather well but not when it comes down to a detailed level. Helmut Sach brings up a method called “SQ3R” that I haven’t tried yet but will do so at a later stage.

As of now, I am creating a memory palace/journey from the information that I written down on my mind map. I don’t know why, but it feels a bit hard to create connections between different aspects of the law that I need to remember.

Currently, one of my memory palace is a McDonalds (I know) to remember differences in contracts between civil and common law wen it comes to remedies for non-performance.


So I start with going into the McDonalds.

To the left of me there is a window where I can see a Lamborghini. This is pegged to performance (in civil law you can ask for performance of the contract when there is a breach).

I continue to walk left to the play area outside since I want to see the car but when I open the door a force field is stopping me. A major is in the middle (like magneto from X-man) and he starts to control the weather. This leads me to force majeure (you can claim performance except in cases of force majeure).

I figured that instead of going out, I can go to the indoor play ground with those plastic balls (Don’t know the English name for it since I suspect it’s not call “ball ocean” or something like that) where I see a huge piece of paper that gives a notice that the ball area is closed because of renovation. This leads me to the 2nd step on what you need to do in civil law when it comes to remedies for non-performance.

All of the sudden, Ronald McDonalds comes up to me and slaps me. This hurts me and I am thinking about going out (Slap connects to damages and me going out refers to termination of the contract).

Now I have the three steps a person can take when it comes to non-performance. 1. The person can ask for performance of the breaching party, 2. A notice can be sent to the party that asks for performance but with some caveats. 3. Termination of the contract itself.

I see a clock as I continue walking down the restaurant and there I see this clock, that ticks downwards. This connects to the idea that I am in a FAST food place (implied time) and Explicit (time on the wall). This might not be connected to a specific remedy but it is needed in order to argue about the non-performance or not. It also connects to the idea that time can be fundamental for a contract.

I then go to the bathroom which is located to the right of the entrance (this leads me to common law) and when I am walking to the toilet, I trip and fall. This causes me damages (Common law is damage based) and since I am a customer I say “The customer is always right” (cliche, I know) and that pegs to the idea that it does not matter in common law, the party should always fulfill its duties.

I then go the till and order food. The food comes out wrong and I want my money back but the personnel says that they can just make me a new burger. This points me to the direction that a court can force a party for a specific performance under certain circumstances.

As a last step I go to those self-servicing machines and try to order. There I am met with a message that there are no more burgers so I do not pay (withholding payment can be allowed under certain conditions)

Currently, I am having issues finding more “clear connections” between certain objects. For example, I have no clue how I can find a connection between “Consequential, reliance, incidental, and restitution”

The next step for me would be able to peg several items on a specific peg. For example if I want to know all elements on a contract like “preamble, definition terms, subject matter, relation, condition/warranties, rights and obligation, boilerplate, etc”

I’m also a bit worried that I will mix up my different loci’s but I am getting better and better on that part. I got some stores (pharmacy and a sport store) as palaces and I remember them at least.


All the best in your journey. Let me add one point here about the way it went for me. I started reading books by Tony Buzan in 1993 and had learned Major System that time, which helped me in many aspects of memory but somehow I could not make myself interested into Memory Palaces. That time it did not clicked me that Memory Palaces are most essential devices for retaining considerable information. Now after many years in 2015 I read many posts on this forum and also went through the tips given by @metivier and @LynneKelly and started learning Memory Palaces deligently and it has made me retain many huge blocks of information.

What has helped me most is:

  1. Major System and Number Object System (To codify numbers and orders)
  2. ALI (ref Dominic’s audio book)
  3. Memory Palace techniques
  4. Story techniques for smaller connections to stick into stations on the Memory Palaces and Journeys

Here I will fall back to splitting the words into funnier, zanier words coming out of the sounds from the original words

If I want to remember these four words in order I will make images and a story to tie those images, let me provide one example of how I will do this for myself

  • Consequential - Khan (ref academy) - Sequence
  • Reliance - Real Lion
  • Incidental - Inside Dental
  • Restitution - Rest Tuition

My story will start somewhere where Sal KHAN is teaching SEQUENCE (this is an mathematical image from my college days) on whiteboard and the student is a REAL LION in front of him, that lion has a INSIDE DENTAL problem hence he is unhappy, after the class lion is paying the REST of the TUITION fees and then leaving for home.

This story will hint me to those sounds and will lead me to remember those four words in order.


Thanks! I will definitely work more on creating memory palaces. I will work more on creating doable memory palaces or journey. The issue I am experiencing with memory palaces is that I am having a hard time finding a good way to create one. Sure, I can create one of my room but what if I want to store it for a longer time?

I’ve read read some tips that you can just make up some rooms so right now I am doing one where I used a hotel room that I was in for some time ago and a “journey” to my former work. I’ve heard that you need to find distinctive “places” in your memory palace, so if you use a bed, you shouldn’t use a bed in another room. Maybe it will work better if I try to visualize the beds as completely different (one is this very luxurious one and the other could be a “race car bed”.

Do you have any tips on how to store words and ideas that are rather similar? For instance Actio Directa and Actio Contraria?

Right now I am thinking about Harry Potter casting a spell because “Actio” sounds like the beginning of a spell. I am thinking of direction when I hear “directa” or an Italian/Spaniard. Contraria sounds like “Count” and aria sounds similar to arianna Grande. I guess that I just have to think about it for a while before finding something that sticks with me.