Remembering ideas

Good ideas have the nasty habit of popping into your head at the most inconvenient moments. You tend to have your glorious light bulb moment when you are in the shower, when you are lying in bed or while you’re working out in the gym… Moments when you don’t have pen and paper nearby.

Why you get these brilliant ideas just at these unfortunate moments we explained last week.

You might recognize this thought: “No need to worry, this thought is só brilliant I won’t forget it. I’ll just write it down as soon as I get home.” …only to realise later that day that you’ve actually forgotten your world-changing idea!

Let’s face it, no matter how brilliant your idea is, if you don’t write it down immediately chances are you’ll have forgotten it the next day. What if you could remember anything for days, weeks even, without the need to put it into writing?

In this post I want to share a mental trick with you. A trick that will enable you to pin down any idea in your mind, without having to worry about forgetting it. In fact, I will show you how to remember an entire series of ideas!

The trick to remembering ideas is visualising. Make an image in your mind’s eye about your idea. Not just any image though, the visual must be somewhat bizarre. The more crazy the visualisation, the better you will remember it. The easiest way to remember multiple ideas is to use a list.

First of all, you need a list of 10 items. Each item has to rhyme with the corresponding number. For instance:
1 – bun
2 – shoe
3 – tree
4 – door
5 – dive
Etc. etc.

What words you use is entirely up to you. Use the language you prefer. The only requirement is that you can remember the words. Learn the list of words by heart.

Now if you want to remember something, or multiple things, you only need to visualise it together with the corresponding word from your list. Let’s show how this works with an example:
Say you are running on a treadmill in the gym. The entire week you have been thinking about ways to increase awareness of your new product. Nothing good has come up so far. Suddenly, while you are running and staring mindlessly out of the window in front of you, it hits you. At the cocktail party last week you met someone who is best friends with a famous actor. She might be able to help you get in touch. You decide to give the actor your fabulous new product as a gift before it hits the shelves. In exchange he should have it on him at the premier of his new film next week. Interesting idea, but you still have 30 minutes on the treadmill to go! Now personally you wouldn’t mind jumping of the damn thing and running to the bar to find a pen and paper. However, from the corner of your eye you see your personal trainer look at you like an eagle pries at an unsuspecting little mouse. You know if you quit now, she will help you remember it for weeks. Instead, you decide to use the list you’ve remembered from this post.

As you’re confident more ideas will follow, you decide to make this idea number one on your list. You quickly visualise the actor with the image of a hamburger bun. Of course you make sure the visualisation is ridiculous: A giant hamburger bun drops from the sky on the red carpet. The press grasps for breath when the top half of the bread slowly slides off… Your chosen actor appears (ketchup and lettuce still in his hair) …with your product in his hands.

A ludicrous mental picture? Absolutely.
But you will remember it.

Regardless the craziness of your idea, it doesn’t hurt to repeat the visualisation a couple of times, especially when you’re trying to remember an entire list of ideas.

What do you do when you need to remember something? Please let me know in the comment box below.

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