We all make visits to the grocery store and usually make a list to take with us. I on occasion have forgotten the list at home or lost it on the way to the store. I go into the store and walk around hoping I’ll remember what I needed. I leave with a few items but when I get home I find my list or realize I need something and I didn’t get anything I needed. Kind of like walking into a room and not remembering why you went into that room.
We live in the country and it’s not easy or economical to drive into town whenever I need stuff so I started making myself memorize the list. It’s been a long time since I was in school and memorizing for tests was never easy for me. I started remembering things in a different way. Let’s say my grocery list is milk, cheese, pickles and soup crackers. In my head I’m seeing my house and each room in the house; kitchen, living room, bedroom, bathroom, office and garage. For each item I need, I put it in a room. I imagine the living room and see a huge jug of milk on the coffee table. I associate the milk to my boys eating cereal in the living. Actually, I remember the bowls of milk they leave in the living room instead of the putting them in dishwasher where they should go! Next I see the bathroom and the toilet. I put a big block of cheese on the back of the toilet. Cheese makes people fart so I can easily smell that stinky cheese in the bathroom. I see my bedroom and the bed. On the bed I put a big jar of pickles. No particular reason for putting pickles in the bedroom other than they don’t usually belong in there. In the office on the desk, I imagine a big package of soup crackers.
After placing the items in the rooms, I go through each room and memorize what’s in the rooms. Living room – milk, bathroom – cheese, bedroom – pickles, office – soup crackers. I’m visualizing each item in those rooms. In my mind each item is a bright colour and very large. Mostly the items don’t belong in those rooms so it’s easy to remember them. I usually put cleaning products on the deck or on the front step. The key to remembering things is to place them where you normally don’t use them. As I drive to the store I go through the rooms again just to go over my “list” again.
This has helped me remember items my husband needs also. I’ve put the WD40 in the kitchen & car oil in the living room.
This simple activity is good for keeping our brains active and working. I find this works for a short list of probably 10 items or less. I can’t imagine trying to remember a long list of 30 items – unless you are able to remember that much stuff – then you have a great memory!