Friday, October 18, 2013

How Our Memory Works

Photo Album

Our memory isn’t like an album full of photos. Our memory is subject to change. You may remember something today, but you won’t remember in a few months later. And, you would insist that you remember it, even if what you remember was wrong.
Our memory is also highly biased. We tend to remember something very well, but not to remember other things very well. Here is why.

Danger Triggers Memory

        When you are in danger (e.g., getting rob, seeing a tiger), your body secrete hormone to get you ready to act. This is a famous “fight or flight” mode. One of the secreted hormone enhances memory. It makes such danger stick with you for a very long time. No wonder a lot of people abused when they were young still have problem when the’ve grown up. 

Other Memory Enhancing Factors

Other factors include emotional events, concrete words (e.g., apples, cars), concentration, repetition, and novelty. Our brain obviously isn’t attracted to boring things like minor details or numbers.

Memory and Gut’s Feeling

The more people imagine about a certain thing the more they think that that thing will happen. Also, people believe that the thing is more likely to happen when it is  easy to imagine.
 “We overestimate the likelihood of being killed by the things that make the evening news and underestimate the those that don’t.”      
Our brain consists of rational part--the head, and the feeling part -- the gut. We have been using our gut for very long long time. Gut helps us make a quick judgement and avoid danger. 
        But we can’t explain why we decide that way. If we try to do so, it will be a fabricated one. Head cannot explain why gut does what it does. So, focus groups would not work as well as what a lot of people would think. When you ask people, why do you like or hate a certain car. The answer may be it’s too small and so on. But is this what really make that person loves or hates the car?

“Head is a compulsive rationalizer. If it doesn’t have an answer, it makes one up.”
SOURCEThe Science of Fear: How the Culture of Fear Manipulates Your Brain 

Book or Audiobooks?

Personally, I prefer audiobooks. It's fun, and I can listen when I'm doing something else. It also makes other activities (e.g., jogging) a lot more fun. For more detail about audiobooks, please read [this post].

There is one more reason that may encourage you to go for the audiobook version. You can get it now for FREE. Audible offers you a free trial for 14 days. Even if you get the book and cancel the subscription right away (so that you don't have to pay), you can keep the book. And, don't worry if you lost the audiobook file. Just log into You can keep downloading the over and over again.

   About the summary: It takes time to finish up a book. And, when you do, sometimes, you want to review what you learn from the book. If you do not make  notes as you read, you might have to go through the book once again. This can be time-consuming when you are dealing with a book. But you can still flip through the book and locate what you are looking for.

However, when the material is an audiobook, it is extremely hard to locate a specific part of content. Most likely you will have to listen to the entire audiobook once again.

This book summary will help solve the pain of having to go through the book all over again.

I am leaving out the details of the books. Most books have interesting examples and case studies, not included here. Reading the original book would be much more entertaining and enlightening. If you like the summary, you may want to get the original from the source below.

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