Memory

Noticed the past couple of months that my memory is shit.

It’s almost certainly linked to the amount of information I’m taking in every day – countless news articles, long reads, social media bullshit, forum stuff all creating a big soup of noise that I can’t possibly compartmentalise in any sensible way. Two years of this, plus consuming huge volumes of film/TV content over lockdown, probably isn’t healthy for anyone.

I’ll quite often read something and think “wow, that’s interesting, will tell people about that” and then completely forget what it is.

How’s yours doing? Any tips?

Mine’s terrible, and I think information overload and general stress is a primary factor for me too (plus ND stuff, which in my case means I’m starting from an already stressed baseline anyway). I found my memory improved when I stopped drinking, but what I didn’t enjoy was that it surfaced a tonne of really unpleasant memories from my past. Also my short-term memory didn’t get that much better, so bit of a non-gain there in all honesty. I wish I could remember things that I needed to do, but there’s just too much fuzz out there.

Great for things I don’t need to remember
Awful for things I do need to remember

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Always been really bad. Could never do any exams that just involved remembering things. Fine on anything that involves applying logic to work things out or analysis.

Barely remember even main plot points, characters and so on from books - even ones I love.

Have a couple of friends whose memories are incredible, like they’ll recall exact conversations from years previously. Like a freaky super power to me.

I do worry about it tbh.

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Good and bad, can remember really obscure things and things from ages ago like my mum’s car reg in 1996, but forget what i had for dinner yesterday or what i came to the fridge to get

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Utter trash memory, glad to have pinned most of that down to my nuerodiversities as I used to worry about it. Also found it fascinating how much bad stuff I’ve blocked out without knowing, I always thought if you blocked stuff out you knew you had but my mum sometimes mentions stuff like how my dad got secretly engaged to his nurse after 3 weeks whilst still married to my mum and I’m like huh, nope, don’t have a single memory of that :smile:

The times it really bothers me is when I retell the same story again and again as it’s one of the few things I remember, or if my friends tell me something that happened that sounded really fun and interesting that I’d like to remember. I especially struggle with very short term stuff, like recounting something that’s literally just happened to me and I can feel it becoming more and more distant from what actually happened.

I do remember all the pointless shit.

But I did a lot of research into memory during my MA and all of you who remember things really well probably don’t at all anyway, in that every time you remember something it’s changed by the mood you’re in when you recall it, and it’s a memory of the last time you remembered it rather than a memory of the original event. The more you remember something, the less true to the reality it is.

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You’ve done this thread before

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Think the good parts of my memory comes from having s very visual brain where it feels almost like pulling things out of a rolodex, you know like in the bbc sherlock holmes he has a mind map where he pulls things out of his memory, i have something similar (but nowhere near as good)

Sure glad I don’t have a job that is like memorising a two-hour script or anything like that.

Used to have a great memory and now it’s shit. Really worries me. When I was a kid the family would joke that I was like a recorder and could keep track of everything. Even in my early twenties I was fairly sharp.

I think I had a bit of a breakdown at around 29 and my noggin’s never been the same since. Very scatty these days.

Nah you’re thinking of the deja vu thread.

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Same, books for some reason really just fall out of my brain. Films I’m ok with and good at recalling who directed what, or who starred in what. But books, I could put it down and a week later forget the main protagonists name.

I can never remember quotes or lyrics, even if i make the effort of reading them over and over again. Really annoying and am really envious of people who can spit out a quote at random from a book they read 3 years ago

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I absolutely hated in school when if you’d watched film or episode of something you were sort of expected to parrot lines from it because I don’t remember any of them, and I’d feel like I’d totally lied if I said I’d watched something but then just had to shrug at every reference being made.

Heard a thing on the radio the other day about a leading psychologist (can’t remember her name obvs) talking about how fallible memory is and how easy it is to generate false memories. Fascinating/scary stuff.

Edit: this is the radio show: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m0014p73

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Always had a poor memory although was decent at exams with revision so I guess not as bad as @zanimos has it.

Still autobiography is genuinely baffling to me as a thing you could to.

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Short term memory. Pretty bad

Long term memory. Bizzarely remarkable. People always are stunned at my ability to remember entire nights to the most minute detail years after the fact.

Bad memory and a history of dementia in the family so later life is gonna be fun, fun, fun!

Usually really good but have definitely had some residual brain fog since having covid. Liek I’ll just be walking down the street and then stop and be like ‘uhh… where was i going? … oh yeah…’ and then carry on. Couple bad ones recently where I realise I’ve left a tap running or something like that :grimacing: hope it subsides soon.

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(Obviously that is shit and hopefully it subsides xx)

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Yeah, do you remember that show years ago that looked at witness accounts of events? It was a channel 4 thing I think and they staged the robbery of a pub or whatever and when they did witness interviews loads of the incorrect details of the event were strangely often the same incorrect details as the other witnesses. For example a large number of them said something like one guy was wearing a red hoody, when it was in fact green, and none of them had talked to each other about it to influence it. It was really interesting!