Find Your Memory Bump
This stroll down memory lane should take about 10 minutes. All you need is a piece of paper and a pencil or pen.
Step 1: Write the words listed below on a blank sheet of paper, leaving a few lines between each one:
Step 2: For each word, jot down the first specific memory that springs to mind. The memory can come from any period of your life, from early childhood to the recent past. Jot down a few details about each memory.
Step 3: Once you've got a memory for each of the 15 words, go back and try to recall how old you were at the time of the memory. Be as specific as you can!
Step 4: Tally up the number of memories that came from each of the decades in your life.
|Decade of Life||# of Memories|
Step 5: Your memory bump is the decade or decades with the most memories.
If you are at least 40 years old, it's likely that the largest number of memories you generated came from your teens (ages 11-20) and 20s (ages 21-30). Unlike many other aspects of memory performance, which generally decline with age, this bump of memories tends to remain stable into the ninth and tenth decades of life. Scientists don't agree about why people can remember these years so well. What do you think explains it?
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