Pointing and calling as a strategy to boost memory for daily routines

I wanted to know if I am able to improve my memory for daily little things like closing door of my car or my flat. During a resarch I found a quite interesting method.

The name of the technique is “Pointing and calling”. It is very popular in Japan. Japanese employees have been using it for 100 years.

How it works? For example, if you want to ensure that light in your bathroom is turned off, you need to look at the light switch or a light bulb and say something like “light is turned off” loudly. Then you point your finger at the spot you want to check (flash bulb) and say “OK”.

I know that it may sound crazy but… it works fine! Research has shown “pointing and calling” may reduce mistakes of Japanese employees by almost 85 percent. We usually do many things so mindlessly and this method boosts our awareness and concentration - 2 things strongly related to good memory.

I’ve noticed that it may be an interesting strategy to deal with my OCD. Now I feel more sure about a fact that I closed door etc. It’s definitely worth a try guys!

For more information check the article:


Very interesting :face_with_monocle:

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Definitely! After few weeks of using it I am totally more sure that my memory serves me right. And I’ve noticed that I’ve started to do things less mindlessly.

This reminds me of the latest (?) memory competition technique of Person-Place-Activity, if I have that right. This is properly described in Moon Walking with Einstein.

The activity of pointing makes use of a different modality of thinking. Then speaking and listening/hearing do the same. The problem to solve is to remember to stop and point.

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Great tip. Thanks!

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Are you thinking of the Person-Action-Object (PAO) System?

That’s really interesting. Surprised I didn’t come across this in Power of Habit; 85% is significant.

You could probably pair this with a mnemonic daily checklist “tray”, which Dominic O’Brien describes in one of his books. You create a number of ordered loci and use them as a daily ToDo list or as a daily checklist. Or you can create a small loci group for each part of your day – morning/work/evening – then quickly cycle through your mnemonic checklist while calling and pointing.

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