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Research Findings Suggest Technique On How To Improve Our Memory [VIDEO]

Update Date: Apr 04, 2017 07:05 AM EDT

Psychologists Philip Mefoh and Valentine Ezeh of the University of Nigeria conducted a research aimed at analyzing the impact of cognitive styles on memory slips. The findings suggested that the answer to how to improve our memory may be as easy as shifting a person's focus during the moment information about an event in the past or the future is being processed.

Strategies for improving one's memory often called for associating new information with something else, and it often takes a lot of effort to do so. Learning how to improve our memory first requires knowing how we perceive stimuli.

In our daily life, prospective memory and retrospective memory play a big role. Prospective memory refers to what one should remember for the future while the latter is about things in the past. Failure in both aspects usually leaves people frustrated and disappointed as it may have implications such as penalties for paying financial obligations late, for example.

Information about the environment is perceived in two different ways. People can either have a cognitive style that is field-independent or field-dependent.

When presented with a complex drawing, people with field-independent cognitive style can find hidden figures more easily than the other. They are more analytical while the field-dependent ones are more global in approach-having difficulty separating the detail from the whole context. To assess which style a person is classified into, the Embedded Figures Test (EFT) is commonly used.

The researchers predicted that the analytical type would be able to process stimuli more efficiently. The participants totaling 233 completed the Group EFT and the Prospective and Retrospective Memory Questionnaire (PRMQ). The questions in the PRMQ represented self or environmentally-cued memory, and short or long-term.

It was found that volunteers with field-independent cognitive style reported better memory, especially with the retrospective kind. They scored better in the PRMQ in which the items include those about making decisions to do a certain task in just a few minutes but forgetting to do it, not being able to do something although there was something in front of them to remind them of it and forgetting to tell someone or give something that they had to pass on among others.

The findings suggest that a simple way to improve our memory is by being more aware of our environment, and of our own or others' words and actions, the Psychology Today reported.

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