Tricks to improve memory

If you are looking to improve or reinforce your memory, we have prepared a series of tips whose goal is precisely that. Thanks to science, here are 12 tricks to improve your memory.


Where does this widespread mania come from to capture everything that happens to us in some imperishable support? Whether in pictures, books or photos it seems that the human being has the need to record what he does and says. As Umberto Eco taught us, “of the rose, only the name remains naked” and society lives with the fear that this name does not prevail in history. This may be the outsourcing of the storage system that everyone has in their brain, memory.

One could say of memory that it is a capacity that gives us our mind to recover images, situations, sensations or information that we lived in the past and that we have needed again for some reason. Memory is a survival mechanism that allows us to use our experiences so as not to repeat the same mistakes and keep progressing. Although memory storage is usually talked about, what memory really does is reproduce the electrochemical stimuli that the brain received at the time it is being recalled to produce the same response. Our senses, thoughts and even our dreams are “recorded” through the neuronal connections waiting to take action.

The brain uses different types of memories (short term, long term, olfactory, procedural, photographic, declarative) that act simultaneously and are interconnected to achieve better functioning and faster responses. However, this functioning in block usually causes that some memories that do not correspond are introduced in which we are interested or that there are gaps of information that the brain itself fills and provide memories that do not represent reality as it was. Problems derived from fatigue, stress or a bad emotional or psychological response can cause certain memories that we still have to be blocked and inaccessible for a while.

Shakespeare said that “memory is the sentinel of the brain” and just as it takes care of our mind, we must take care of it. Exercises, mental games, diets rich in nutrients or healthy lifestyles are some of the many aspects that we must watch to keep our memory healthy and fit. A few tricks that will help us take care of our invisible sentinel.

1. Mnemonic rules to improve memory

Man Wearing Black and White Stripe Shirt Looking at White Printer Papers on the Wall

The memory works like a filing cabinet. If we use it to use mnemonic rules, it will be much easier to speed up the process of finding what you are looking for. Thus, using associations that are comfortable with concepts we want to learn has turned out to be an excellent strategy to accustom our memory to quickly recovering what we already know. Associating numbers with words that rhyme could be the most basic example (one-juice, two-cough, etc). This kind of tricks, as shown by several studies published in the journal Neuron, put into operation several areas of the brain other than the hippocampus, such as the perirhinal cortex that has a key role in visual recognition.

2. Open and close hands

Person's Scooping Water by Hands

A trick is available to everyone. Research carried out by the University of Montclair (USA) and published in Plos One magazine, revealed that pressing the right fist for 90 seconds helps in the process of memory formation. On the other hand, pressing the left fist also facilitates the retrieval of information stored in our memory.

3. The Brain Training games

Yellow, Orange, and Green 3x3 Rubik's Cube

Everything we undertake in order to improve our memory will bear fruit. Practice 15 minutes a day of brain training games, improve the performance of working memory, executive functions, and processing speed, according to a study published in Plos One magazine.

4. Meditate

Man Sitting on Grass Field

An investigation carried out by the University of California in Santa Barbara (USA) showed that with two weeks of training in what is known as “mindfulness”, it is possible to significantly improve the reading comprehension, the memory capacity of work and concentration. Meditation is, therefore, a powerful tool to help us strengthen memory.

5. Close your eyes

Photo of Woman With Her Eyes Closed in Fur Hooded Coat During Winter

It seems a simple gesture but it is completely effective. A study carried out by a team of scientists from the University of Surrey (United Kingdom) with 178 participants, concluded that we remember up to 23% more efficiency (we remember with more precision the details) if we have our eyes closed to whether we have open The study was published in the Journal of Criminal Psychology.

6. Coffee

Person Performing Coffee Art

The components of coffee not only wake us up and make us feel more active but also reinforce our memory. The culprit is caffeine and according to a study developed by the Johns Hopkins University (USA) and published in the journal Nature Neuroscience, having a coffee just after having faced an important job reinforces our memory. “This is the first time that this effect of caffeine has been observed to reduce forgetfulness one day after having ingested it,” explains Michael Yassa, leader of the study.

7. Synchronized sounds

Photography of Woman Listening to Music

Although it is in the experimental phase, new research from the University of Tübingen (Germany) and collected by the journal Neuron has discovered that the reproduction during sleep of sounds synchronized with the rhythm of slow brain oscillations increases memory.

Although it is in the experimental phase, new research from the University of Tübingen (Germany) and collected by the journal Neuron has discovered that the reproduction during sleep of sounds synchronized with the rhythm of slow brain oscillations increases memory.

8. Exercise

Photo of Woman Wearing Pair of Black Nike Running Shoes

Performing moderate intensity exercise helps to memorize what has been learned before. This is attested by a recent study by the University of California (USA) in which volunteers between 50 and 85 years old participated and who demonstrated the benefits of being physically active. The experiment consisted in seeing pleasant images; then, pedal on a stationary bike for 6 minutes at 70% capacity and then, an hour later, perform a surprise test on the images they had visualized before exercising. The results showed that the release of norepinephrine, induced by physical exercise, caused a striking improvement in memory compared to the volunteers who exercised compared to those who did not.

9. Take a nap

Close-Up Photography of Woman Sleeping

If a restful sleep every night is already one of the elements to take into account for our memory, the siesta also contributes its bit. Sleeping about 20 minutes of nap each day helps us remember better what we have learned because during this rest we consolidate what we learned without realizing it. This benefit is obtained at any age.

10. Chocolate

Shallow Focus Photography of Cafe Late

Is chocolate good for memory? Yes. Several studies published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology have concluded that one of the components of cocoa, flavonols, are related to better cognitive performance. The reason is that they stimulate brain perfusion, favor neurogenesis and promote changes in the areas related to learning and memory.

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