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Why do we forget or lose – Memory test!



Why do we forget or lose - Memory test!

Neurobiologists have recently discovered that there are parts of the brain that can sleep more or less long, and we don’t even suspect it. At any point in time, some of the nerve chains can be turned off and put to sleep to restore strength. Why do we forget something or lose things? We understand together with the book “Organized Mind“.

Lose and forget

So we forget things somewhere or place them in the wrong place because the responsible part of the brain either sleeps or is distracted by something. The same thing happens when we search for something and don’t notice that the lost is right in front of us; The same thing happens when we plunge into sleepiness and it takes a few seconds to get out.

Salvation can be the development of full presence and heightened awareness: we can fully learn, like Zen Buddhists, to always focus on the current moment and understand where and what we are doing. If we try to focus on what is going to happen, we will teach the brain (especially the hippocampus) to remember where and what to put, as we get into a state of active, focused activity every time and record, what is happening.

And when we get handy hooks for keys, a shelf for phones, or a box for sunglasses, we don’t have to keep information about these items in our storage so we can remove some of the burden from the brain and transfer it to external systems.

Souvenirs for the brain

In general, the ancient Greeks tried to expand the possibilities of memory with the help of the external environment, and the effectiveness of these efforts is confirmed by modern neurobiologists. If you think about it, we’ve really learned how to transfer storage functions to external media and devices. Dan Wegner, a psychologist at Harvard University, writes: “Our shelves are full of books, cupboards full of important documents, notebooks full of ideas and notes, and there are always souvenirs at home.”

This is also a way to remember and remember: the word “souvenir” comes from the French “remember” or “as a souvenir”.

Many of the experts who study human memory conclude that a great deal of information about what we have experienced in our lives remains in the brain: what we have seen, heard, smelled and touched, about what we thought and talked, like riding a bike or having dinner – everything that we at least paid attention to is stored in it. But if so, why do we forget that?

Patrick Jane, the hero of the series “The Mentalist”, put it rather eloquently: “Memory fails us because the brain uses a completely useless system for recording and storing data. He takes everything that happens to us and throws it together in a huge dark closet. And when we try to find something in our memories, we either notice mainly important events and significant experiences, or we encounter unnecessary nonsense, like the words of a stupid song. And what is really needed is almost impossible to find. However, this is no reason to panic – because what you are looking for is located somewhere in this cupboard. ”

Patrick Jane, the hero of the series The Mentalist, put it pretty eloquently

When we experience a certain event, one of the neuronal chains is activated depending on the circumstances. Let’s say we’re watching a sunset – and the visual centers responsible for shadows and light, as well as pink, orange, and yellow, are excited. The view of the sky is changing rapidly, and other neurons will be involved in their observation half an hour sooner or later.

Or let’s say you’re watching a tennis game: thanks to the activity of neurons, you distinguish the faces of players, notice their movements, monitor the movements of the ball and the racket – and with the help of more complex cognitive tools, you can determine whether the ball does that Has left the playing field, and even keep account. Every thought, all impressions and sensations are connected with a unique set of neurons – and without it everything seems the same to us. We distinguish between these events precisely because groups of neurons are not activated at the same time.

Remember the realignment and activation of the exact chain of neurons that were involved in the initial event.

Neurons help to feel and recognize what is happening, and when we want to remember something, they restore the circumstances for us. As soon as neurons can be activated in roughly the same configuration as at the time of the event, we get a reminder: as if the entire sequence of the action were played, but in a lower resolution. If it were possible to build exactly the same neural chain as at the time of the event, the memory would be surprisingly accurate and realistic.

However, the recall process is not ideal: the commands with which the neurons reproduce the original chain are not strong enough, which only makes memory a pale and often inaccurate copy of what happened. Among other things, the lived events are often similar. When we try to mentally restore one of them, it is difficult for the brain to isolate a particular fact from a number of more typical ones. So memory not only fails because of the limited capabilities of the brain, it cannot store all information, but also because of the peculiarities of retrieval: errors occur because of the similarity of the files.


Is there a way to determine which impressions and events we can remember exactly and which we cannot? Here are two basic rules: The most accurate are the memories of unique/atypical events as well as those that caused strong emotions. Events and experiences that stand out against the general background are better remembered, since the brain does not deviate to similar impressions when it is called up.

For example, it is difficult to remember exactly what we ate for breakfast two weeks ago on Thursday, since that day was probably nothing special and therefore all our memories of breakfast merge into a more or less uniform picture of a typical morning meal. Images of similar events are combined in memory not only because it is more convenient, but also because the mechanism of learning and memorizing is arranged in this way: the brain searches for abstract general rules that enable standard events or tasks to be grouped, and this shows themselves particularly in relation to routine plots.

Is there a way to determine which impressions and events we can remember exactly and which we cannot?

If you always have the same thing for breakfast – cereal with milk, a glass of juice, coffee – it is difficult for the brain to distinguish the circumstances of a particular morning from the memory. On the other hand, it is much easier to remember if you did something out of the routine during breakfast – for example, eating the remains of yesterday’s pizza or pouring juice on a good shirt.

Two principles of memory

1. We indicate the important first principle: To remember a particular event, the brain has to sort many memories of similar episodes or impressions and choose exactly what you need.

When we have had many similar events, several or even all of them appear in the memory at the same time, ie the brain forms an overall picture that consists of fragments of memories, although we do not even realize this. That is why it is so difficult to remember where we left the glasses or the keys: they ended up in so many different places so often that all memories merged into one picture, and now it is difficult to understand where we are last seen them

2nd Second principle Memory work is associated with emotions. If we were in a situation with terrible fear or indescribable joy, very angry or angry – that is, experiencing one of the four basic human emotions – we will be more likely to remember these circumstances. The fact is that the brain connects important experiences with the corresponding neurochemical markers, making these events particularly memorable.

As in the brain, there is a bright yellow felt pen that happens to note the events and impressions of each day that seemed to be something special.

Unfortunately, the presence of such markers does not guarantee that the memory is correct, although this helps to quickly restore an event or experience. To give an example, most Americans can easily remember where they were when they heard about the September 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center in New York. According to the study, about 80% of Americans remember these terrible pictures: first the first plane crashes into the north tower and after twenty-two minutes it flies south.

However, it turns out that most of the memories are not real.

On TV they actually showed in real-time how the plane crashes into the south tower, but the video of the first plane that explodes the north tower wasn’t shown until the next day, September 12th. Millions of Americans saw these two reports in reverse order: one day later they viewed pictures from the north tower than from the south. But now we all know that the north tower was destroyed twenty minutes earlier. Therefore, these paintings are stored in their real order and not as they were seen on TV in those terrible days. The resulting false memory turned out to be so stable that even President Bush claimed to have seen footage of the destruction of the North Tower on September 11th. However, archive recordings from television stations prove that this is impossible.

Check the memory

Do the following exercise to make sure how memory really lets us down. You will need a pen or pencil and a piece of paper. Below is a list of words; Read them out loud and not too quickly, about one word per second so that you can understand each correctly.

  • Tired
  • Peppy
  • snoring
  • BED
  • IS
  • nap
  • Wake up

Now, without looking, try to write down as many words from this list as possible.

Did the word “rest” appear on your list? “Night”? “Ant-eater”? “Stay awake”? “Dream”?

The easiest way to remember at least a few words. 85% of respondents necessarily write “calm” because this is the first word that you start reading. It is a manifestation of primary effect: As a rule, it is best to correct the starting element. 70% of those questioned called “night” the last word. It is shown like this Novelty effect: We remember the elements we read last, although they are not as good as the first ones.

You probably didn’t write the word “Anteater” because it wasn’t on the list – although researchers often use strange questions to get respondents to read more carefully. About 60% remember the word “sleep”. But take a closer look: it is not on the list! This is how memory distortions occur, and if you approached this task in a similar way to most participants, you also wrote this word down, and you were absolutely certain that you saw it. How so?It's your turn

Associative networks worked, which were discussed in the introduction: If you imagine red, for example, the so-called process of distributing associations can begin, whereby new images and facts (semantic nodes) appear in the memory. The same principle worked here: there were many words related to sleep in the list, so the word “sleep” appeared in your head and in your list. In fact, this is a false memory, it’s about what didn’t really exist.

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What is the Difference Between Losers and Winners



What is the Difference Between Losers and Winners


What is the Difference Between Losers and Winners

Man is a social being, for his survival, he needs a group. Unsurprisingly, a large proportion of our instincts and programmed behaviors are geared toward building intragroup relationships — collaboration and competition for resources. There are three basic strategies for this interaction: take, give and exchange. More details – in this material, prepared according to the book “Find a Mentor“.

Three strategies

Find a mentor

Depending on the circumstances, we can use any of the three strategies, but, as a rule, each of us has one that we prefer.

“Exchangers” – these are those who act on the principle “I give, so that you give me too.” They are the majority in society. Their focus is justice.

“The takers” – focused on maximizing their own benefits in a relationship. The interests of others do not bother them.

Finally, there is also “Givers” – these people are focused on selfless help to others. Their focus is relationships.

What is the Difference Between Losers and Winners

What is the Difference Between Losers and Winners

Which of these strategies is more winning? Based on the research data, the following can be said. In the early stages, the takers are the most successful, while the givers are the outsiders.

As you move up, the picture changes to the opposite. There are almost no “takers” at the heights of success. But among those who have achieved outstanding results, there are unexpectedly many “giving”. The “exchangers” show stable average results at all levels.

People who are focused on their own benefit rarely reach the top. The reasons for this are obvious. A systematic disregard for the interests of others alienates those around them and increases hostility. In other words, within the framework of this strategy, each subsequent step repels friends and multiplies enemies. As a result, sooner or later, a person remains alone. It’s good if by that time he manages to reach the top.

But even so, success often looks like this: you are sitting in a tree, under which a pack of hungry wolves has gathered.

Another strategy of greatest interest is “give”. According to research conducted, most selfless and selfless altruists who are concerned about the welfare of others and are willing to help them to the detriment of their own interests are losers, which seems quite natural. On the other hand, it is the “givers” who achieve the greatest successes.

What is the Difference Between Losers and Winners

What is the Difference Between Losers and Winners

Key factor

Why? Is this a game of chance, or is there some factor that distinguishes successful givers from unsuccessful ones? Such a factor really exists. And this is your environment. Both are equally trying to help everyone and do not expect immediate rewards. Both those and others in response receive the sympathy and approval of others. Some of them seek to provide a reciprocal service – they are “exchangers”. Some take advantage of the value they receive without considering it necessary to give something in return – these are the “takers.”

The difference between losers and winners is what happens next.

The loser continues to help everyone equally. And here everything depends on the case – how many “takers” will be in his environment. If not enough, he will survive. If there is a lot, it will quickly lose all resources and opportunities for growth. The winner, on the other hand, knows how to identify the “takers” and remove them from his circle, so a network is gradually formed around him, which together brings him more than he put into its formation. From some point on, it becomes a key success factor. And the sooner he learns to do this, the higher his chances of achieving outstanding results.

Prepared according to the book “Find a Mentor“.

What is the Difference Between Losers and Winners

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