Journal - Learning German as my first Memory Palace Project

It is a wide range. People with a typical college grad vocab are not happy reading Edwardian and even Victorian English. But someone with a lot of literature in their background has typically around 60,000 words. At that speed, you may have to look up a word or two a page, but the language will flow for you. Then you have engineers and the like whose communication skills are not the stuff of legend.

I have a family member who is an editor. I have not yet succeeded in finding a word that stumps her - even if she doesn’t know, her guess is too good.

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Hey how did you send this in a way that the video shows in the comment?

I copy-pasted the link as a address, it formatted automatically.

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Commenting instead of vlogging today.

Consistency is key.

I went yesterday and today out and about, building my palace. Three things are becoming evident:

  1. Yes, like all skills, this takes time to build. Well, I’ll speak for myself only and say that memorizing just 22 words doesn’t come easy. I have to work at it.
  2. It is important to keep things organized in the Palace. An early snag I ran into was caused by the attempted use of unmemorable loci, confused my head and ensured next to nothing was memorized.
  3. It is painfully obvious too that I am still early in this skill. It is often tricky to come up with associative images for the words I am trying to memorize, and I have read on many sources that this is something that improves with time.
  4. (I’m on a roll) I had my doubts that this time-tested and thoroughly chronicled art for memorization worked, but now that I have experienced it myself, I have no doubts and I am even more energized to develop this skill.

I read in a post the guidance to go out somewhere, commit the place to memory, and then, from memory, place loci in the place as a way to build a Memory Palace.

I don’t trust my ability to recall enough that I can abstract the Palace to two layers. I build my palace by going out to where it physically exists with my vocabulary book in hand, and stare attentively at my loci of choice as I place my exaggerated imaginations on them.

People walking by definitely think I’m crazy. Fortunately, not many go by where my Palace exists. The thought of looking crazy definitely fed my procrastination of weeks past for daily practice, but (as you might imagine), the more I go out there, the less I am phased by looking crazy.

I am finding it of integral importance to organize the palace properly, even to structure my daily practice. By that, I mean that before starting practice, I am finding it important to both count the number of words to be memorized and to identify memorable loci.

On another thought: meeting my limitations to recall and to raise my Palace is instigating the need to read further on mnemothenics in order to improve my skills. This is the burden of the eclectic man: there are so many things that grab my attention - God, fitness, cooking, programming, finance, to name a few - to fit yet another task to nurture yet another dimension in life seems daunting. The Renaissance man of decorum is lauded, and for good reason. It begs the question how the artists among us with heavy burdens - families, in particular - manage their art.

Mind you, I do not see this memory art as a hobby, but as an integral portion of my development to become the man I envision for myself.


I’d actually advise not looking at the loci you’re going to use, when you look at it you’re trying to see a sort of image over your loci. What you want to do is to be completely in your mind when you’re seeing the palace, completely reconstructing it like a 3D video game, seeing it from all angles in your mind. From experience whenever I tried to do what you’re doing I remember like 30-40% vs 95% if you try to fully construct it in your mind. I think it’s something to do with you using your memory for places when you reconstruct it versus your visual memory. That’s just a guess and other people will obviously have different opinions on my advice here


When I started using memory palaces, I made the mistake of thinking that the palace has to closely resemble the real place, but that‘s not necessary. Nowadays, I just go out and walk through a space, then I go through it in my mind when I‘m at home. The locations that I don‘t remember were too weak anyway, so I don‘t bother trying go make the palace perfect. The locations that your brain saves in your memory naturally, without much effort, usually work better, than the ones you had to commit to memory with effort.
What I‘m trying to say is: Try no to be too perfectionistic, it will only slow down your progress (this has been tough for me in the beginning, since I am usually too perfectionistic).


Hey Mcnallymemory, I would also love your 1000 most used alphabetical word list and the PDF frequency dictionary if you are willing to send a copy my way! I also tried to learn based on the category and the task was daunting and I quickly stopped studying German. I am definitely going to test the alphabetical way! I already have a memory palace devoted to alphabetical objects such as birds, animals, and fruits and they were easier for me to conjure and I have the structure set up for this method already. Really good idea, so thanks again.



Ich bin Nandan , ich möchten etwas sprachen.

etwas strange ist happening wann ich started to learn Deutch, ich bin fähig more Deutch words , Der other day ich was browsing and came across “Ein oder mehrere Felder sind fehlerhaft. Bitte überprüfe sie und versuche es noch einmal” und ich was stunned at how much ich could verstehe from that line. Completely memorized about 700 words and on a break .

love reading the discussions hier.

Bitte continue.



I want to thank you for mentioning the Linkword program. I looked it up, purchased it and it’s fantastic! I started a list of all the words for review including the visuals that I change. I just finished two days of driving while listening to the mp3s, so those will have to be reviewed. I have a few nit-picky criticisms, but it’s a good start and I’m a lot farther than with any other language program I’ve tried. Thanks!!

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Glad i was oh help!

Now combine that with memory palace and you will be blown away with the results.

on my way to reach 2000 words now and started to feel that may be in ther next one month i should be able to converse …i dont know.

Another thing i am trying is a suggestion from a friend of mine who is a polygot and he suggested i start learning three languages at a time and things will flow faster .

I am not brave enough to start three so i started with spanish last week and hell yeah German words come more natural now …

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Folks, I am sorry I have orphaned this thread. I felt forced to pause this project and give precedence to something else for the while.

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