Memory

Remember What You Read? Write to Remember

Reading and Memory

(Photo Credit: Blavity)

Although you may think you have the best memory, and maybe you do, after reading so many pieces, you need a strategy to aid your memory about the pieces read. One of the most important strategies for helping you to recall what you read, including remembering some sophisticated analyses and observations made, is to write a summary and/or critical review of each text read. Write the summary or critical review immediately after reading a text. This type of focused writing strategy benefits all readers.

Yes, taking notes about the works one reads is a traditional method that is useful in aiding your recollection. Taking notes, however, does not involve the serious level of focus and engagement that writing summaries and critical reviews necessitates. This greater level of focus and engagement will not only ameliorate your ability to recall what you read but also significantly enhance your comprehension.

You can compose your summaries and critical reviews in a regular notebook or journal, but you might find it more fun to capture your summaries and critical reviews through blogging. By using blogging as your method of penning your summaries and critical reviews, you are able to share your writing with the world and engage and receive feedback from a global audience.

Blogger, Weebly, and WordPress are three excellent blogging platforms that you might consider using to blog your summaries and critical reviews of the pieces you read.

Most of us live busy lives. When you’ve invested your time and energy in reading a work, especially a long book or lengthy essay, do you really want to forget most or everything about the book or essay 6 months or a year after reading the book or essay? Let your summaries and critical reviews of those books and essays support your memory.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison       

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Memory Will Protect Your Heart

 

Sad Black Woman

(Photo Credit: Ex-Superwoman)

Psychology teaches us to judge people by their previous actions. While one should forgive people, and forgive them immediately, don’t forget their track record. Even when you’ve just met a person, evaluate his or her words and assess his or her fidelity to those words. Unless you have some type of mental condition adversely affecting your memory, it offers great power to protect you from heartbreak. Listen carefully to what people say and closely observe whether they deliver on what they communicate.

One of the central reasons why an individual must engage in close analysis of what others communicate and their corresponding actions is selfishness often enters the equation. People’s selfishness can have devastating effects. Although you cannot guard yourself against all acts of others’ selfishness, valuing the power of memory permits you to diminish opportunities for falling prey to such selfishness.

It’s okay to trust people—just exercise good judgment. As much as possible, make sure the people you trust have a track record that merits trust. Words alone are meaningless. What real evidence is available to help you determine whether to trust someone? If you ask that question each time you make a decision, you will greatly ameliorate your outcomes.

Memory, an invisible best friend often neglected, is waiting to collaborate with you to defeat those who would attempt to do you harm. Let memory guide your thoughts, your actions, your values, your principles.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Nature Speaks, Nature Remembers: My Strong, Protective Flower Tree

Flower Tree

(Photo Credit: Ginnie Ann Daniels)

I had some trees cut around the house that seemed likely to fall. After the trees were cut, some of the remaining stumps left such distinctive prints. One, in particular, evoked the memory of when Billy and I, as a young couple 30 years ago, purchased our home. What follows is the dominant impression this idiosyncratic tree, uniquely mine, engendered.

The tree reminded me of you 30 years ago when we first moved in, so strong with muscle limbs, protecting our little family from storms and harsh sunrays. Yet, with time, the strong become weak but still try to withhold winds and persevere. Each year, more dead leaves fell, and we could tell—with unspoken words—this once robust tree was dying.

Flower Tree

(Photo Credit: Ginnie Ann Daniels)

Your strong roots embedded lasting memories for your seedlings, family and friends. We have to let go and start anew. With exultation, however, we never forget that the strong leave roots in the dirt with everlasting memory of the last leaf that fell.

I can now look out of my window to see and remember my strong, protective flower tree.

In loving memory of Billy Daniels, spouse of Ginnie Ann Daniels, married nearly 44 years (23 days short of 44 years).

Ginnie Ann Daniels, El Dorado, Arkansas, Author

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Editor