Ok the time has come to 'fess up.
I am not in fact an Accountant. Never was, never will be.
You see for some months now, I have been leading a double life.
And I apologise for this dreadful deceit.
It all started back in January. I was at a party and somebody asked the inevitable
'So what do you do?'
In response to which my mouth opened and I uttered the words -
'I'm an Accountant'.
At the time, this surprised me greatly however the conversation swiftly moved on to other topics and a good time was had by all.
So that's how I became a part-time, party Accountant.
Now upon reflection, I have come to understand the reason for my economy with the truth. And it is this.
Parties are meant to be happy affairs.
But telling people you're a 'Memory Coach' invariably does not result in much merriment. Indeed, usually quite the opposite.
Some people think that you're a freak and politely but perceptibly begin to edge away from you.
Others stare back blankly as though you've just told them you train monkeys to speak Swahili.
But the majority just get depressed and spend the rest of the evening telling you just how shockingly bad their memory is.
Which is of course a lie. But one that many people choose to believe. So let's prove it with a quick and painless memory test.
Firstly, read through the following list of random words and try to commit as many of them as you can to memory…in order.
Ok, now grab a piece of paper and write down as many of the words as you can recall…in the correct order.
Do it now…
If you managed to get 100%, congratulations - you are the exception to the norm. In this quick memory test, most people recall 5-7 words with 4-5 in the right order.
But how you scored isn't important. It's what you can score that really matters. So we'll repeat the exercise and this time you will get 10/10 - and in the right order.
To do this we'll use the Number Rhyme memory technique.
If you read the last edition of Splat! about how to remember passwords you'll already be familiar with the Number Rhyme technique.
(Missed last edition? Click here)
In a nutshell, it involves using rhyming to create mental images for each of the numbers from 1 to 10 as follows…
One is GUN, two is SHOE, three is TREE, four is DOOR, five is HIVE, six is STICKS, seven is HEAVEN, eight is GATE, nine is WINE, ten is HEN.
These images are then used to help you remember new information. So let's give it a go.
First word is RESTAURANT. In the Number Rhyme technique, number one is represented by GUN.
So we simply want to create a vivid mental picture linking these two items together.
You could imagine being in a swanky RESTAURANT with your loved one but the waiter is really rude and the service is appalling. So what do you do? That's right! You pull out a GUN and shoot the waiter (just in your imagination).
Second word is GOLD. In the Number Rhyme technique, number two is represented by SHOE.
Imagine you've just bought a pair of brand new shoes, special shoes…made entirely from GOLD. You put them on and they are so heavy that you can't even lift your feet off the ground!
Third word is RAZORBLADES. In the Number Rhyme technique, number three is represented by TREE.
You may picture a palm tree with huge, sharp, shiny RAZORBLADES hanging down from each of its branches.
Fourth word is ZULUS. In the Number Rhyme technique, number four is represented by DOOR.
There's a loud knock at your front door. You open it and there's a whole tribe of ZULUS jumping up and down and throwing spears.
Fifth word is DISCO. In the Number Rhyme technique, number five is represented by HIVE.
You're strutting your stuff down at the local DISCO when suddenly people start screaming and running from the dance floor as they are attacked by a swarm of killer bees (HIVE).
So that's the first 5 words in order to get you started. Have a go at the remaining 5, but using your own imagination and creating your own memorable associations between the words.
If you complete the exercise you'll give your creativity a real workout and you'll be able to recall all 10 words in any order, forwards or backwards.
Impressive eh? Well yes…and no.
Because I have another confession to make…
But I'll leave that till next edition.
The Final Word: Terrible memory? Try the above test and discover the shocking truth…you don't have a bad memory. You just need to learn how to use it properly.
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