Daily Nugget of Gold 796
It’s been said that the sweetest thing to people’s ears is hearing their own name. Do you like it when people call you by name? Consider that people of note like to have their names memorialized on buildings named for them, others not so wealthy or powerful will settle for a pew in a church with a little name plaque or a tile on larger plaque, say, in a building’s front entrance, or even on a library book. Having our name be remembered gives us all a sense of importance, a feeling that we matter.
Have you noticed that a lot of people seem to have the affliction of not being able to remember names very well? Did you ever say, “I can’t remember names” to yourself or others? We hear this so often that we are likely to use this phrase whenever we fail to come up with what a person’s name is. That would be a mistake, in our estimation. It would appear that anything we say to ourselves often enough becomes a reality provided for us by our own subconscious mind. The duty of the subconscious mind is to take any well-emotionalized command and turn it into our experience going forward. When we say, “I can’t remember names” at the very time we feel embarrassed, ashamed, or befuddled because we didn’t come up with a name for the person standing in front of us- even if we heard it seconds ago- we are creating our reality as we speak, aren’t we?
Guess which part of our mind is also in charge of remembering names in the first place? If you guessed “the subconscious” then you were right. If we are telling the obedient part of our brain that we can’t do something, it has no choice but to bring that admonition to pass. Our subconscious mind actually remembers everything we hear, everything we see… everything. If we have difficulty remembering, then we have a retrieval problem, not a memory problem. The way to get better at retrieving something from memory is to put far more importance on what it is we want to recall later.
When you are introduced to someone, say their name to yourself over and over again. This works even better as you study their face. We really don’t want to look like we are in deep thought as we do this, but rather to put a warm, friendly glow on our own face. Seems like a lot to remember? Not really, here’s where an attitudinal shift will aid you. Think of every person you meet as a fascinating chance to learn about them. Ask questions about where they’re from, do they come from a big family or a small one, what are their favorite sports- any fun and interesting conversation you can make which explores who they are instead of trying to get away with only the least amount of information possible.
“Wait a minute”, you might say, “If I can’t remember a name, how am I going to remember all that?” This is where the magnificence of the human brain really shines, what we are doing by being genuinely interested in the other person comes into view- we are stressing to our deeper mind that we consider this person important to us when we show this genuine interest. We have enormous brain capacity- far more than what we usually use. Let’s put it to work- take a real interest in any given topic and see how easy memory can be. Even with names.
Question of the Day to Ask Ourselves
“What can I do right now to get better at remembering names?”
Copyright 2012 Kevin Littleton, all rights reserved.