When to use Memory techniques and which?

As title says :
When we can use Memory techniques in this era?
We don’t need them for
-phone numbers
-todo list because of apps

  • birthdays(calendar)
  • person details(iI personally built an archive if card in Trello with each but I know about a person important to me or I want to impress (where it travelled, what it likes, and what it prefers, what to avoid to talk, etc)

Currently in using Spaces Repetition with Anki for information (static one) for my job which I shouldn’t look for constantly, but… What else?

And if you find some use cases,
Which method we should use for which use case?

1 Like

I borrowed ideas from Lynne Kelly in the current moment :slight_smile: - timeline history and imagined ancestry.
I am obsessed with Anki. But sometime I get a little lazy and create cards without memory palace, that usually backfires because if I don’t review cards for sometime I feel like I am learning from the beginning. With memory palaces, I remember at least something. And I am learning tax codes and Regs for my work… I upload the memory palace image with every card, just in case I forgot the information or the image in the palace was not very strong.

I also like various information not necessary large amount - like the countries with largest oil reserves, and countries by the population size (Lynne’s idea as well).

I did not build PAO system yet - I mostly use major system - so I think I will be using ancestry for my person list :slight_smile:

1 Like

Every firm I have ever worked for has said something along the lines of “We don’t care if you’re late coming in or have to take the day off sick. What we DO care about is you not telling us as soon as you think that you might be late”.

So imagine the scene, you jump in your old car cos you’re still not old enough to get cheaper car insurance , jam that first cup of coffee of the day between your legs, light a cigarette before the demister clears the windscreen , and head off to work. Then there is a Cluster-FreddyUncleCharlieKate of a jam on the motorway. Nothing moving and that extra half an hour journey time you always allow yourself cos you’re not stupid ain’t going to be enough by far. THEN you realise you left your phone on the table at home charging overnight.

Maybe the people in the car infront of the car with the knitted steering wheel will let you use their cell phone to call into work, assuming there is a signal. That’s assuming you can remember your boss’ number. But can you remember the numbers of the rest of the people marked in your phone calendar for the day…

Yes a slightly silly example but everyone here will have been in a similar situation at least a couple of times a year. What happens when the battery dies? When the mobile networks go down?

1 Like

I do get what you mean.

I rarely memorize phone numbers. I have the number for my work memorized, but only the front desk. They can connect me to everyone I need. I do not -need- to memorize anything else. So what are things we do need to remember?

I would argue that there are at least three phone numbers that are generally good to know. The emergency number for the country you’re in, the number of your loved one, and mom. You can take on the world with those.

Secondly, what is important to you? I want to remember the names of people I meet, so when I see them again three months later, I still know their name. Therefor names are important to me.

Information is important to me. What is going on in the world? How does physics determine what will happen to an object when certain conditions are met? How do the mechanics of my car/bike/skateboard work and what can I fo to fix things myself? What kind of care do my plants need? All things that I dont always need to know, but which I do want to have in my head. Note that these are not things you -need-, but things I want to have.

Finally, what is important to know for what you do? I often work with medical checklists, but there are cases where I dont have the list. Maybe the lists are all used, maybe no one has a list with them, maybe a coworker is moving to pick up a list, whatever the case, I dont want to wait while someone needs help. I want that list in my head.

If I have an appointment with someone, I need to know who they are, what they need me for and sometimes other relevant information. I dont always have time to read things through before every appointment, so I memorize them ealier on

Memory techniques are both the book in your head and the tools you need to write in it. What to write depends on what you want to use it for. You can choose to only use your phone for text messages and calls, or also use it as a calendar, gaming system, notebook, todo list, encyclopedia and video streaming device. Just like that, you can use your mind to breathe and walk, or also to solve puzzles, memorize information, develop philosophical ideas and debate how toilet paper should hang on the wall.


Back when the world was just cooling down, in the 80s, everybody who was, or who felt they were, anyone carried a ‘Filofax’. For the younger ones here I shall explain: A Filofax was a ‘personal organiser’ a diary/notebook/address book and calendar all in one with interchangeable leaves and ‘extras’ like a handy little plastic envelope to hold your credit cards .
A TV SOAP once did a whole episode about how the stressed, gay YUPPIE’s world disintegrated when he ‘lost’ his precious filofax. I say ‘lost’ because his rather underage gay partner (this was the 80s when people didn’t get so worked up about ‘age of consent’ ) had hidden it inorder to help him de-stress.
The filofax-less Yuppie went into melt down. Almost cost him everything, his business, his social life even his car i think because he didn’t have the names, numbers and appointments for the day in his head.
It was a salutary tale for a teenager about to start work and i harkened to it. I had at one point two filofaxs which I carried everywhere with me. But i always made sure I had the 10-15 most important numbers in my head…which ‘normal’ people and not stressed yuppies did anyways back then.

Now I don’t even know my own cell phone number.

There is a lesson in there I think.

Update: I am just watching Johnny Briones daily offering and he says that “memorizing phone numbers is stupid”…just after he says ‘your phone is with you 90% of the time’.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cNMYbRoFzNo . Sorry Johnny, but that 10% could be really important.

1 Like

I like Johnny, and respect him a lot for all his teachings and efforts. I often watch his videos and make good comments, but I totally agree with you on this. Knowing all the important phone numbers could be lifesaving.

I’ve just commented on his video as follows;

"I follow you and enjoy your videos, but I’m afraid to say I have to disagree with you not needing to memorise phone numbers. There has been many occasions where knowing a phone number was very useful. If for example knowing your own phone number means that you can say it over the phone to the person who needs it ie for making appointments and for people to contact you back. It takes more time to open your phone and look for the number. It is always wise to teach your children as a parent a phone number that they know by heart in case of emergencies.
I can give many examples of why we need to know at least some phone numbers that maybe life saving. "

No disrespect to Johnny. He is a great person!

1 Like

I am prepared to forgive Johnny B , because he doesn’t yet , I think , have kids. EVERY parent knows that the moment your Cellphone dies, when you aren’t ‘wired’, is when the baby decides to throw a 42 C fever…preferably on a Bank Holiday.

Several times a year one of my adult sons will send me a text FINALLY hours or days after I have asked him something. The text will read “Sorry Dad, your grandson hid my phone”. If his phone is ‘gone’ for any reason he can’t even remember his own wife’s cell phone number, or his kids’ doctor.

1 Like

I think the 1990s movie Taking Care of Business was released in the UK as Filofax too.


…and that’s basically the answer. Anything that takes an unreasonable (your definition of that) amount of time to otherwise look up.


I started off with wanting to improve my memory and my brain, I took a lot of action to get to the stage I am at now. Even tho I try to compete, my main aim is to make use of these skills in my daily life activities.

I mostly use memory systems and methods for my daily personal life as well as my business life. This is a brain tool that makes life much easier and more fun.

Starting with phone numbers, I think it is very important that we know our own phone number by heart so that we would not need to open our phone and look for our number each time which takes longer time. Knowing the most important numbers that matters in case of emergencies could be lifesaving.

Our lives are made of numbers. past and future Dates and events , Time, appointments, passwords, flight tickets, passport number, pin numbers, money and budgets, maths, weather info, distances, routes, weighing, and many more other uses that would make sense to memorise to make our lives easier.

As a quick example, I live in the UK, and often travel to Manchester Airport from my town, by memorising the signs I am able to always find my route regardless of roadworks and diversions and redirections. M6, then M56 at junction 20a is the route to Manchester Airport, and this was very easy to memorise for me using the number and letter shapes, so wherever I may be on motorway/highway I can always find my route back to it even If I get lost.

Children safety; I think that all parent should teach their children a few of the most important phone numbers and their own home address at the very least.

Your passport number is also an important document, I know my passport number by heart, and you never know when it may come handy. This once happened on a holiday in Spain that one of the passports of a family member was stolen.

Other numbers such as Pin numbers, passwords, dates and times and the numbers that we have to know by heart, therefore it makes sense to memorise. When you forget your anniversary or a birthday of the people that matters to you, it’s not well received. It accepts no excuses.

Knowing how much money is left in your bank account/s or credit on your card is also very handy to memorise which will save you from going into debts.

People’s names and faces; No need to much comment on this one as it’s one of those things that will help form relationships in life and business and so it’s always a great skill to have.

Remembering past events will also help solve some future problems.
I had a big issue with this, and it was one of my reasons why I wanted to know more about how the brain worked and how we can improve it. It worked! I can remember my past events right down to the person’s name and the locations. The side effects of memory training worked like a miracle on me. I am amazed at my own self that I can remember almost everything of my past now.

Speeches; There maybe an occasion where you may have to do a speech at least once in your life, this could be at a wedding for example as the best friend, father of the bride etc.

School education; By using the memory methods, it can certainly help to remember more and be more effective in school. Dominic has a book on this and I recommend it to everyone. It was better than expected. Knowing a lot of facts such as History, science etc etc should be very handy indeed.

Business and Career; Knowing the memory systems and methods will definitely come handy when dealing with customers, sales, aims and goals of the company, rules to follow as an employee etc. It’s a very valuable skill in business and career.

Language learning; If and when you would need to learn a different language, then I don’t know any faster method than using memory methods to learn it faster. You could at least learn about 50 words a day using the memory methods available, and this would equal to 250 words in a week which is probably enough to get by initially.

Secret Language; You could even use these methods for a secret language
, such as the major system. You could send a secret message by using a mixture of numbers, letter, and symbols to someone who uses the same secret :slight_smile: Kids loves this, it’s a nice game for them and a way to teach some of the memorising methods to them.

Setting yearly goals; This is where you visualise where you want to be in a year’s time, and make a plan of action. But is important to know how to visualise which can be learned using the memory methods. Once done, then you’d have to prioritize your plan of action, again this is where you’d also use memory methods.

Exercising the brain; Put the brain into action by constantly using these methods in your daily life, but also do it forcefully by memorising some random playing cards, number digits, words, images etc. This is what I do for exercising the brain which also helps me to exercise all the activities I mentioned above for my daily life. Since I’ve been exercising my brain, and perhaps because of the cause of it, I am much more focused, able to remember past events, able to memorise what I have in front of me and around me. Something somehow happens in the brain with neurons that seems to work better and faster the more you exercise it.
Here is my exercising routine;

Winning free drinks bets by performing memory stunts is also a good one to have a laugh with friends and family :slight_smile:

Shopping list and things to do lists; I know that we can simply write it down. But it saves time not having to take out the piece of paper or your diary all the time. And you’ll certainly impress people around you by knowing them all.

Lastly, discovering and uncovering your brain capacity will make you feel amazed, proud and wonderful about yourself!

I use memory methods in my daily life, it has become a second nature to me and I have nothing bad to say but Love It!

What else do you guys use it for?


Hi guys
thanks for all the answers!
While considering some of the use cases you pointed out, actually I was hoping more for a reply about the HOW, like a list of what to use and how to memorize:

  • definitions
  • facts
  • things that are a mix of both
    I’m kinda lost about how to use different memory techniques to memorize different kind of stuff.
    How we memorize the language grammar rules to speak and write correctly?
    How we memorize the best tricks of a board game?
    How we memorize what our friends like and dislike?
    How we memorize events happened in the past?

and the most important: how we memorize more stuff without giving up tons of personal time?I’ve read about other users complaining about the memory palace getting biggers and taking more and more time to walk in…

I’m really excited and keen to learn more about to use in daily life but also frightned a bit about how big and difficult this thing thing can become…

1 Like

When I got good enough at the method of loci, I knew HOW to use them. And this had become the only technique with which I could memorize anything, including all of the above. And the memory space/location includes many of the other tricks and techniques, using images, associations… Also I can use any other techniques in a memory palace (loci). So if I had to do it all again, I’d just get to practicing building and populating palaces, get good enough at it, and explore and add other techniques to be used in my palaces.

P.s palaces were harder and longer only at first, so I always preferred other techniques, but thanks to memory champions sharing their stuff (mostly Mullen), I knew there was a way for it to be used on the spot, on the fly, and so much faster and better than anything, so I kept on forcing myself to go back to it, then it became the fastest and most useful for everything, even though I still use other techniques, ok sometimes alone if it just one or two pieces of info.

But the palace always gives me an extra way of reviewing more and better and faster, and is the only memory technique for me to help for the very big and complicated endeavours