I'm having trouble mastering new memory palaces

Hello. I can use the old memory palaces very well and remember every image I put in them, but when I want to use the new memory palace I can’t quite remember the pictures I put in them. please guide me. Thank you


New memory palaces are not as stable initially so it helps if you make them much more memorable than your ordinarily less memorable palaces that have been reinforced through time. e.g Here it becomes important not to use too many images per location. In general 3 is fine but if you start having 5-10 its going to be hard to retain these images in the location and time consuming.

After you review them once or twice ,maxium really three times they start sticking sufficiently to retain your objects inside as with your old memory palaces. This is either if you review them with the objects or without the objects.

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Whenever I have a problem remembering images, it’s because of the images themselves. Maybe they are simply too “normal” and everyday. Unless you’re the kind of person who responds best to those kinds of images, you may want to experiment with images that are more outlandish and surprising.

For example, maybe try experimenting with scale: Would the image be more memorable if something in it was very very large or very small? Or maybe it might be more memorable if you included a favorite actor or other personality in the scene. Or included elements that were shocking: violent and sexual images have long been recommended for their memorability. Are there sounds or smells or colors you could include? All of them could make it easier to recall your images.



There are two techniques I use to get confortable with new memory palaces.

One is a vivid walkthrough. I slowly walk through through the palace, mentally. I open some cabinets to find a cup and pour myself a drink. I test the couch and search for the remote. I pet any pets. I lay down on the bed. I want to involve as many senses as possible.

Secondly is a slow paced number sequence. I take time for the images, really create a solid interaction between the persons from my number system and the loci where they are placed. I dont care how sexual, violent, strange or plain idiotic I have to make the image, I want it to be as strong as it can get.

Getting used to a memory palace takes some time and effort, but after you have done that, you can work with it pretty well


@Mayarra I remember you saying that you had some obscene number of memory palaces. Are these all from your daily life or do you create imaginary palaces? How do you sustain that lists and the palaces? I find myself thinking that if I had many palaces and many lists that unless I was using some kind of spaced repetition religiously it would all kind of disappear for me very quickly. I did several hundred digits with a journey to my coffee shop and after a few weeks both the journey and the list faded. Now I remember that I did but my pi is back to its normal rote 3.1415926…

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@RobertFontaine I do, I believe it is pretty close to a thousand with palaces and peg lists combined, but I dont have an exact number. i’d say that around 80-90% are memory palaces and most are artificial/imaginary palaces, though around 99% of my palaces are visitable in one way or another.

My real life palaces are houses (my own, friends, family), impressive places I have visited, hotel rooms, etc.

The majority is from video games, where I either build them or where they are pre-build.

I am making a topic where I show some palaces and how they are “stored” (Artificial Memory Palaces series - Fallout 4)

Basically I build memory cities, of which “Sanctuary” which I am building in the linked post is one of them. That city will have around 20 palaces inside it and another ±25 added outside of it (which will make sense when I have time to do those).

Finally validation for playing video games. lol… I quit video games back in the days of adventure… you are in a maze of twisty turny rooms all the same. Do you find you need to walk through the games occasionally or has game play embedded the images in your head permanently?

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I very seldom have to walk through the games, but I think that having the places as a memory palace already has me walking through them a lot haha

I’m also a gamer who’s using gaming maps for palaces. I’m taking about 30 minutes per map to convert it into a palace. Usually I get 50 loci out of them. I’ve found the smaller maps the easier to memorize.

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I add simple random images to my palaces at first to help them mature, it has never caused a problem. On the contrary, the added images either becomes permanent and helps add further associations or simply dissapear.

I still have a passport in my washer from years ago my first steps with palaces!


Hi I’ve just read your other post regarding your need to have a numbers system and just seeing here that you have palaces ready, I thought perhaps what I have done could work for you as well. I placed many of my numbers in a palace any way I thought of (giving them enough of space), letting my imagination run wild, and regularly going through them intertwined in my familiar places they eventually took a form that I could reuse in another palace for memorizing any given set of digits.

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When I develop out a palace, I start with numbering all the locations from the beginning of the walk-thru. Shooting for about 5 loci per room. On FPS maps, I’m painfully aware of all the typical ambush points, so ambush corners often get added as loci. Then I pull out a spreadsheet that has all my palaces and I write down the numbers and brief description of the location.

I was really struggling with my PAO for several weeks until I chose to put it into a Game map palace. Within 2 hours, Boom, it was mostly settled. Amazing technique. However, it was heavily recommended, that your PAO palace must never be reused. So I’m leaving it alone.

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Hi Mahdi,

I would not obsess over memory palaces!

Try using the Link method…You don’t need a building or any other structure.

Practice visualizing in your mind’s eye:

Imagine a fig…small, green and lactating on the tip because you just broke it off the tree.
Now, see it opening and see the various layers including the pulp with the seeds.

Nice right? :slight_smile:

Is there a difference in the old memory palaces and the new ones you are trying? I am trying to figure out what changed when they were working for you and already worked (the old ones) and the new ones not working, so what changed? Is that just a saturation of the memory palaces in mind. I have never experienced that in my very little life of trying memory palaces, but still thinking loud to pop some questions as I know asking questions many times gives us a direction.

Memory palaces do have a place in retaining structured data. When I needed a tabular data to be accessible row wise as well as column wise I will prefer a memory palace over a linked story anytime. For example to remember periodic table I chose 18 houses I knew and placed every element in the column of periodic table in one house. So 18 columns are stored in 18 houses but the beauty is in every house the forth row element is kept in the living room, the fifth row element is in kitchen and so on and so forth. So now I can travel through the periodic table column wise (one house at a time) or row wise like kitchen of all houses. I have my order number pegs also attached to the house gates so I know which house is column 1 and which is column 2 and so on.

Journey and Memory Palace can be combined in various forms. I have journeys of memory palaces.

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I said what I did so he can give himself a break…not to dismiss memory locations/palaces.

Wow…why are people so quick to jump and not ask a question if wondering or confused about a post?

Calm down people!

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I came across a similar problem when learning to play chess without sight of the board. The “Plague of Ghost Pieces”. It was not enough to move a piece from one square to another and memorize that. The piece had to be actively cleared from its previous square otherwise a ‘ghost’ would remain on the board. At first, I would mentally scrape the square clean and then one by one erase the web of possible moves that its presence there had implied, but once my brain got the idea, it went very quick.

I suggest you do some active remodeling before installing new images. Repaint the walls and put in a new carpet.

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