Memory is the foundation of all learning and human knowledge.
Without memory, you can’t store new information or ideas. You can’t be creative without memory, because creativity requires combining old ideas in new ways.
If you think about it, there aren’t many things you can do well in life without good memory.
Since memory is the foundation for intellectual success, let’s talk about how you can improve your memory with a powerful memory technique that you can learn in just a few minutes.
How to Improve Your Memory
To demonstrate how this amazing memory strategy works, I’m going to teach you a quick list of 10 new ideas, and then show you how to memorize the list immediately.
Not only will you learn a great technique you can use to remember anything you want for the rest of your life, you’ll also learn about human intelligence.
10 Types of Human Intelligence
The music of your life is far better played with all the fingers of your Multiple Intelligences performing their magic on the keyboard of your existence.
The quote you just read was taken from Tony’s book, Head First. In his book, he talks about how we have at least 10 intelligences.
We don’t just have one way of being “clever” but at least 10—and probably more. I like to remember these intelligences to remind myself how incredible we all are and to focus on improving them daily.
How to Improve Your Memory with the Body Method
Let me demonstrate how to remember these 10 intelligences with a powerful memory system. It is called The Body Method. With this memory method, we’re using parts of our body to store the new information we want to remember.
Your body is a great long-term storage compartment; you are in it every day and you know it well. There are plenty of storage compartments that you can use within your own body, but for demonstration purposes, I’m only going to use 10 places, so you can quickly master this memory technique (and expand it as you see fit).
With this method, we are going to place 10 key bits of information on our body. The information is a bit abstract—it’s not a concrete fact, but rather a concept that might ordinarily be hard to remember. Using the Body Method, though, you’ll easily be able to retrieve the information later.
This technique will require you to think creatively, so let’s give it a go.
1. Creative Intelligence
The first place that we are going to store information is our feet. The first intelligence is creative intelligence. So I want you to imagine that you are standing on a big, bright light bulb (a light bulb always reminds me of creative ideas) and it is burning your feet. To strengthen the association, you can also imagine you are painting a beautiful work of art on your feet.
2. Personal Intelligence
In the second place, your knees, we are going to store personal intelligence. Now imagine a big purse (sounds like “personal”) sitting on your knees. Create a bit of action with this picture: imagine opening the purse on your knees and your knees come flying out of it.
Personal intelligence is about taking responsibility, so own the purse on your knees.
3. Social Intelligence
The next storage compartment is your thighs. Here we will store social intelligence. Imagine people having a big party (a social activity) on your thighs. Really see the party and feel it happening on your thighs now.
4. Spiritual Intelligence
The next place is your belt or hips, and we will store spiritual intelligence there. Imagine a beautiful angel on your belt, or that the angel is buckling your belt for you (angels remind me of spirituality).
At this point, it’s time to review all the previous images from your feet to your hips. The key words are Creative, Personal, Social, and Spiritual.
5. Physical Intelligence
Next is your physical intelligence and we will store it on your stomach. Imagine you get physical, start doing situps, and your stomach all of a sudden becomes muscular; it becomes the perfect six-pack. Hard to forget that one!
6. Sensual Intelligence
Imagine your sensual intelligence being in your left hand. Here you can imagine a sniffly nose, sharp ears, and keen eyes to remind you of all of your senses.
7. Sexual Intelligence
Then in your right hand, place sexual intelligence—here you can make up your own picture.
Now let’s review quickly. We have: Creative, Personal, Social, Spiritual, Physical, Sensual, and Sexual.
8. Numerical Intelligence
The next place is your mouth. Imagine big, bright, colorful numbers flying out of your mouth (numerical intelligence). Or imagine you can only speak in numbers.
9. Spatial Intelligence
On your nose, see a space ship landing on your nose and forehead (spatial intelligence.) Or see a space ship flying up your nose.
10. Verbal Intelligence
Finally, on the top of your head, imagine writing words on your hair, or that your hair starts talking (verbal intelligence.)
Let’s review The Body List:
The Creative and Emotional Intelligences
Legs create motion; this can remind you that the Creative and Emotional intelligences are stored on your feet and legs.
- Creative intelligence
- Personal intelligence (self-knowledge, self-fulfillment, and understanding self)
- Social intelligence
- Spiritual intelligence
The Bodily Intelligences
All of these are stored on the biggest part of your body, your torso.
- Physical intelligence
- Sensual intelligence
- Sexual intelligence
The Traditional IQ Intelligences
These are the “head” intelligences, and obviously, they’re located on parts of your head.
- Numerical intelligence
- Spatial intelligence
- Verbal intelligence
Tony Buzan says we are now entering the intelligence age, so it is vitally important that you know more about your amazing intelligences. The Body Method also helps you structure the information so that you can easily jump in and out of the material. When you read Head First, the body list will act as a powerful memory matrix that will attract more information and improve your understanding and recognition of the content.
Of course, this technique isn’t just for remembering ideas in one single book. If you hear any other list of intelligences, like Howard Gardner’s, you can easily slot the information into its relevant compartment. When you hear people discussing IQ, you will also immediately remember that IQ only tests three intelligences: the head intelligences.
Most of us have been taught to think that we are either intelligent or we are not. But the definitions of intelligence we learned at school were built around the specific types of intelligence that are most valued at school – verbal intelligence and numerical intelligence.
A Powerful Memory Technique
This technique isn’t just for remembering your multiple intelligences and information about that topic. The Body Method was originally invented by the ancient Greeks to help them remember anything they needed to recall immediately.
You can use this method to remember information for exams, work, shopping lists, or any other list of information. You can even use it to remember things when you don’t have a pen at hand, like when you are in the shower.
I used just 10 places on the body as an example, but you can use your back, your ears, eyes, nose… you can use it all. Just make sure you connect the information you want to remember to the place you’re “putting” it in a humorous way and that you remember the order.
I have been able to use this method to remember fifty pieces of information!
I like to use this system to remember information so that I can consistently look at the information and have it at my fingertips.
Use Multiple Intelligences to Improve Your Memory
Our brains all work in different ways. Some of us learn better visually, from diagrams, infographics, or videos. Other people need to move around in order to process and remember information effectively.
That’s where the concept of multiple intelligences comes from—the idea that we all have these many different ways to process the world around us and that we use them in different ways and have different preferences for using them.
Using your body to remember is a great way to use your kinesthetic and visual aptitudes to improve your memory. If you’re a visual learner, you can use the Body Method to create vivid pictures in your mind about what you’re trying to remember and how it relates to the part of the body you’re “storing” that memory. Think of the example of the purse on your knees for “personal” intelligence.
If you’re a kinesthetic or bodily learner, this is a perfect way to remember things! Many people with ADD or executive function disorder have trouble remembering information long-term because they try to suppress their natural urge to move around and instead sit still to try to force lists of facts and figures into their brains.
The Body Method turns this on its head!
Instead of sitting still and poring over a sheet of paper over and over, trying to cram the information into your head, turn the Body Method into a moving memory system.
When you’re storing information on a part of your body, use that part of the body and connect it to the information you’re trying to remember. Storing something with your feet? Wiggle them around. Knees? Jump in place or bounce your legs under your desk.
Come up with different motions or exercises you can use to connect to the information you’re learning—flap your hands, touch your nose, cross your eyes, or shake your head.
Later, when you’re trying to remember the information you’ve stored, make that motion and you’ll be surprised to see the information come flooding right back.
When you need to store a whole bunch of information and pull it back up at the drop of a hat, try using the Body Method to tie your visual, physical, spatial, and head intelligences together. Combining all of these makes a powerful tool for recalling anything you want.
Improve Your Memory Today
Want to learn more about how to turbocharge your memory?
Pick up Unlimited Memory by Kevin Horsley, which describes how to use the Body Method and other creative techniques to learn better, remember more, and be more productive.
About the Author
For more than 25 years, Kevin Horsley has been analyzing the mind and memory and its capacity for brilliance. He is one of only a few people in the world to have received the title International Grandmaster of Memory. He is a World Memory Championship medalist and a two-time World Record holder for the Everest of memory tests. Kevin is also an author of four books and the designer of a times table game with the Serious Games Institute at North-West University Vaal Campus.
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