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• Step 07 The Link Method

• Step 08 Location: the Second Key

• Step 09 Imagination: the Third Key

• Step 10 The Journey Method

• Step 11 Concentration

• Step 12 The Language of Numbers

• Step 13 The Number-Rhyme System

• Step 14 The Alphabet System

M emory depends on three basic
processes: making something
memorable, storing that item in the mind, and
recalling it accurately at some future time.
Before you can begin to improve your
memory you must have faith in it as a
perfectible faculty. We may speak of having a
memory “like a sieve” – yet this is not in the
same order of reality as being balding, or
colour-blind, or pigeon-toed. As you begin to
use the memory techniques in this chapter,
you will find that your ability to recall facts,
numbers, objects, events, places and people
gradually sharpens.
This chapter begins with some word, shape
and number tests to help you to evaluate your
current memory power. You will learn some
basic stand-alone techniques, such as
Acronyms and the Body System, that are
useful for memorizing small and simple sets
of information.
Then we look at developing the key skills
of association, location and imagination. I
will introduce you to effective memory
techniques including the Journey Method, a
filing system for storing items you wish to
remember, and the Number-Shape System, a
way to recall a sequence of numbers from
four-digit PINs to historical dates. I will
guide you as you learn these methods and
practise them in the various exercises.
01 How Good is
Your Memory?

Whether you feel your memory is unreliable

or performing reasonably well, the chances
are that it is already in fairly good shape. But
it is likely that no one has shown you how to
access its true potential. Self-doubt may have
crept in as you become conscious of
forgetting people’s names, where you left
your wallet, or that new PIN for your credit
This first step will measure how good or
indifferent your current memory power is
through several tests. Write down your
answers and keep track of your scores in your
Don’t worry if you score poorly at first, as
I am confident you will make rapid progress
after just the first few steps of your 52-step
journey to a perfect memory.

TEST 1: Words
Allow yourself three minutes to study the
following list of 20 words. Write down as
many words as you can recall. The order is
not important. Score one point for each word
you can recall correctly, then move on to the
next test.