I am currently doing my exam finals, and, if you went to University or had to study for some type of exam, you know the struggle. The struggle to remember what you read.
There are many different methods that work for different kinds of people. In fact, I recently read a Lifehacker article that suggested the reason as to why you have a 'bad memory' is that you're not 'using' it right. You can find the article here:
In the article, it urges to reader to notice what things you remember and how. So, as you do when you have nothing to lose, I tested it out.
First, I analysed what things I remember most. In general, my memory is good, and I can remember things quite easily - if I'm paying attention. So there is:
One - be sure you give your full attention.
Next, I noticed that I remember things most when I see a picture or what I read/hear makes me imagine things in my head. To this day, I can recall outfits that my friends wore on nights out five years ago, because I have them pictured in my head from all the photos I took back then. I also remember what our design Tutor was telling my friend in tutorials a couple months ago because I visualized what he said, even though it did not concern my work at all. And yet, when tried to study, I couldn't remember a sentence I had read only a moment earlier. In the other two successful occasions, I noticed, there was visualization.
Two - Visualize
These two points I tried my best to incorporate in my studying, of which I had an exam today, might I say. I remembered things MUCH better than usual, even more so considering the time frame.
The method I employed was the following:
I had a program of 12 Lectures with around 3 Architectural manifestos each, almost all by different Architects. As I moved from manifesto to manifesto, I pictured in my head a building/plot for each manifesto, with the architect/s who wrote it by the entrance. As I read along, I pictured things that corresponded to what I was reading. The weirder and more memorable it is, the better.
At the end, I drew a map of what became a couple of roads with all the manifesto buildings within it. I remembered each and every manifesto, and could recall most of what I read, especially those I had time to go over in depth for a second time. The key in my case was strong visual connections.
So if you want a good memory, think about it, what makes you remember?