Tuesday 23 March 2010

My Brain

I was listening to Are We Alone podcast this morning on the way to work (on an old iriver instead of my HTC Touch HD - but that's another story) and it was all about how your memory works. One thing I always think about and complain to others about is what I perceive to be the state of my memory.

I really think I have problems remembering things. I think I spend a lot of time listening to podcasts (science, linux, etc), reading literature/blogs and watching documentaries and I am quite annoyed at the fact that I seem to really struggle to retain all the interesting facts that I am reading/listening/watching. I could read a book on something, thoroughly enjoy it, then forget most of it. The subject could come up in conversation and I always feel that I should be able to speak up because I have read about it, but I usually quite blank!

Its really beginning to bother me as I imagine how much I would know if I remembered more that I took in, as I do feel like I make an effort to keep myself reasonably well read. Its worse when I hear someone talking about something that I know I have learnt about, and they are saying it wrong, but I am not able to recall the facts to put them right.

One of the interesting things in the podcast was that 2 main things are detrimental to whether you remember something or not: 1) Interruption and 2) Concentration (I actually can't remember from this morning if that's the right word, but it fits for what I remember I was going to write about).

Interruption is obvious and an external factor, but concentration is really interesting. I realised when I heard this that that is exactly what happens to me. I find myself all the time when reading or listening to someone, realising that my mind has actually wandered onto something else and I have to kinda snap myself out of it.

I actually did this whilst listening to the podcast as I was thinking about the above paragraph, so missed the next few minutes of the podcast! And then when I realised that's what I had done, I started thinking about that too missing even further minutes! Its ridiculous.

I don't think I have problems, I just think I want to be able to have a better memory, as I do have interests in many things and my mind is always going at a hundred miles an hour on different topics.

So I guess if I really do think it is a problem I will have to find ways to train my memory... can only be a good thing...right?

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