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Remembering What You Read - Cruisen_Chubby - 09-02-2013 11:54 AM

I was just wondering if any of you guys suffer from this as well: Do you remember everything that you read?

I find that I can read an entire book- remember the take away lessons, anecdotes, etc. only to forget them in a couple days.

Take for example the 48 laws of power... I could incorporate one of the laws during that day (that I read), only to forget about it the next day. I feel as if I'm wasting my time.

I know I shouldn't expect to imbibe every single detail that I've read, but I don't want to have to read the same chapters/books day in and day out just to retain the knowledge.

Perhaps I should get my dome checked out? Perhaps Alzheimer's is setting in at the young, supple age of 22. Maybe what I've read just hasn't resonated with me like I expected it to.

Does anyone else get this? Any tips/tricks to remedy this problem?

-Chubby


RE: Remembering What You Read - Spider - 09-02-2013 12:11 PM

I get this too. In the past year or so, I've been trying to read a lot of self-improvement books, and literature on game etc.

I find it it's nearly impossible to retain a majority of the information, unless I re-read it several times. I've re-read Bang like 3 times, and it's still hard to remember a lot of things. Start folding the page down when you come across something you find important and want to remember.

Also look into Piracetam/Choline Supplementation. Great for cognitive function/memory, just started taking it a week or 2 ago, and it's working.


RE: Remembering What You Read - emuelle1 - 09-02-2013 12:27 PM

I've always had that problem. Sometimes I'm afraid to start a book because I want to really master it and I don't feel like I'm in the right frame of mind. I've slowly learned that sometimes you just have to get into the book. You won't retain everything, but the more you learn the more you'll make new connections when you come across similar information in different books. I try to make notes and underlines to come back to later. Sometimes my notes are just "yeah, that's cool!", other times I make notes connecting to other ideas, and sometimes I'm just arguing with the author. I have a lot of books with "Bullshit!" written in the margins.


RE: Remembering What You Read - Beyond Borders - 09-02-2013 12:36 PM

I think it's definitely a good idea to read a book a few times if it's worth reading at all. Anyone take the type of notes they would have taken from a textbook or lecture in school? I've done this with a couple of books if they were important for my business or life enough that I was intent on absorbing the material.


RE: Remembering What You Read - Architekt - 09-03-2013 01:56 AM

Forget about the words, it's the ideas that are important. There are a lot less of those, too. If you take the time to think about what the author is actually saying and why, the ideas will have a platform to stand on in your mind, rather than just being large chunks of disconnected words


RE: Remembering What You Read - PhilE - 09-03-2013 02:01 AM

Take notes. And do it physically... Pen to pad.


RE: Remembering What You Read - phaedrus - 09-03-2013 09:15 AM

I read this today: http://thoughtcatalog.com/2013/how-and-why-to-keep-a-commonplace-book/

It's something I've done from time to time since graduate school. Using a commonplace book helps memory recall because you are physically writing down the things you want to remember and the wisdom you gleaned from your reading. Later, you can flip through your notes for a review. You can also keep track of goals. One poster mentioned 48 Laws of Power. Take a lesson from the book, write your goal in your commonplace book or journal, and track it over a week, taking notes at the end of each day about how you met (or failed to meet) your goal.


RE: Remembering What You Read - Beyond Borders - 09-03-2013 11:21 AM

I seem to remember this book being highly recommended somewhere.

How to Read a Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading

Written around 1940 and then updated and revised with a co-author in the 70's. I can't remember where I picked up the recommendation but it just popped into my head again now and I Googled it. Might have been J.J. Luna, author of How to Be Invisible...?

Anyways, anyone ever read it?


RE: Remembering What You Read - Aliblahba - 09-03-2013 11:24 AM

I memorized every single thread on the forum. Ask me any question and I will answer.


RE: Remembering What You Read - el mechanico - 09-03-2013 11:29 AM

(09-03-2013 11:24 AM)Aliblahba Wrote:  I memorized every single thread on the forum. Ask me any question and I will answer.
Which toppings were on the pizza that got "stolen" in the DR?


RE: Remembering What You Read - Aliblahba - 09-03-2013 11:33 AM

(09-03-2013 11:29 AM)el mechanico Wrote:  
(09-03-2013 11:24 AM)Aliblahba Wrote:  I memorized every single thread on the forum. Ask me any question and I will answer.
Which toppings were on the pizza that got "stolen" in the DR?

I called the guy that took the order a stupid Mexican, so probably feces and urine. How did it taste?


RE: Remembering What You Read - Beyond Borders - 09-03-2013 11:42 AM

(09-03-2013 09:15 AM)phaedrus Wrote:  I read this today: http://thoughtcatalog.com/2013/how-and-why-to-keep-a-commonplace-book/

This is a great article - nice share for your first post, Man.

Now I just need to brainstorm a way to do this that's ideal for a traveler...


RE: Remembering What You Read - Parlay44 - 09-03-2013 11:42 AM

I think my memory is pretty exceptional. I remember a lot of very specific details.

There's a couple kinds of memory: Long term, Short term and Working Memory.

Working memory is the memory that you use in the moment. Think of it like hearing a
funny story and being able to repeat it word for word. It's something you can work on
and develop.

I think my working memory is so strong because I've been playing guitar for so many years.
Now you can argue that playing a song is using your long term memory. And there's some truth to it.
But in reality when I play something I know the whole thing by heart. You're very focused
and seem to tune out the world around you in order to play the song. I think the song "loads"
from your long term memory into the working memory of your brain. I can see the song in its entirety
and know exact where in the song I am, what the upcoming lyrics are, how fast song should be played
...etc.

I think learning a musical instrument would help improve your memory all around and would definitely
help you remember things you've read in books.


RE: Remembering What You Read - Mentavious - 09-03-2013 11:44 AM

Take notes
Say it don't just read it

Listening to classical music while studying or reading helped me.


RE: Remembering What You Read - le prince perdu - 09-03-2013 12:09 PM

I don't think it is possible to remember everything you read but the knowledge gets stored in your subconscious,
In the long run it just becomes a database of information that you would be able to use when necessary.

For example you might be facing a problem with digging a hole or something, you start brainstorming and you remember reading in a book about a simple tool made out of wood that make digging holes easier.

You have trees around you, you cut a branch, make the tool and voila!!!

It's not much about remembering but using the knowledge acquired from books as a voice(guide) to help you out with everyday's problems Thumb up


RE: Remembering What You Read - Parlay44 - 09-03-2013 12:16 PM

(09-03-2013 02:01 AM)PhilE Wrote:  Take notes. And do it physically... Pen to pad.

Yeah I agree with this too. I'm pretty good at reading and absorbing information
but it will definitely stick better in your mind if you physically write it down.

http://www.lifehack.org/articles/productivity/writing-and-remembering-why-we-remember-what-we-write.html


RE: Remembering What You Read - phaedrus - 09-03-2013 12:21 PM

Thank you.

I second your book recommendation, How to Read a Book. I read that one in college and it's formed the way I read ever since. Incidentally, I ran across it and read it completely on my own. Despite being in the humanities division, the book was never once on a reading list in any of my courses.

Edit: This was meant to be a reply to BeyondBorders' post about How to Read a Book. I messed up the quoting functionality.


RE: Remembering What You Read - emuelle1 - 09-03-2013 12:45 PM

I have a copy of "How To Read A Book". It's very good. I don't always apply it though.


RE: Remembering What You Read - Que enspastic - 09-03-2013 06:50 PM

^ HA. I forgot that one.


RE: Remembering What You Read - Brodiaga - 09-03-2013 07:08 PM

(09-03-2013 11:42 AM)Parlay44 Wrote:  I think my memory is pretty exceptional. I remember a lot of very specific details.

There's a couple kinds of memory: Long term, Short term and Working Memory.

Working memory is the memory that you use in the moment. Think of it like hearing a
funny story and being able to repeat it word for word. It's something you can work on
and develop.

I think my working memory is so strong because I've been playing guitar for so many years.
Now you can argue that playing a song is using your long term memory. And there's some truth to it.
But in reality when I play something I know the whole thing by heart. You're very focused
and seem to tune out the world around you in order to play the song. I think the song "loads"
from your long term memory into the working memory of your brain. I can see the song in its entirety
and know exact where in the song I am, what the upcoming lyrics are, how fast song should be played
...etc.

I think learning a musical instrument would help improve your memory all around and would definitely
help you remember things you've read in books.

I played two musical instruments for about 8 years as a kid, but my memory is still shit. I guess it would have been even worse without it)


RE: Remembering What You Read - TheBlackNarwhal - 09-03-2013 10:16 PM

My Algebra 2 teacher always had this on lock down. He said the way your brain works and remembers things is by tying everything to a concept; whether that concept be logarithms, equations, or the plot to A Tale of Two Cities. If you can understand the overall theme and concept of whatever the material is trying to teach, then more specific details will more easily come to you.

When it comes to books, trying summarizing each chapter. I did this a lot in high school so if I didn't touch the same book in a month or so I would know what the hell it was talking about. Also, Mnemonic devices work for a reason! Make a jingle or somewhat bearable acronym when it comes to long lists.


RE: Remembering What You Read - Roosh - 09-04-2013 08:04 AM

One way to remember ideas from a book is to keep reading other books. You will encounter ideas repeatedly and through this repetition the knowledge will stick in your brain.

You can take notes on a book, but how often are you going to reference them? It also helps to act on what you're reading as you're reading it.


RE: Remembering What You Read - speakeasy - 09-04-2013 10:33 AM

As I get older I have a harder time recalling information that I read. When I read something, I generally get the gist of it and internalize the overarching theme. I will have a very hard time recalling specific details. I think there's a few reasons for this.

As you get older, your brain has acquired so much new information and experiences that a memory has to be that much stronger just to rise above all the background noise. Nobody knows for sure what the brain's "hard drive" capacity is, it's generally believed that there's enough storage space on the brain to more than last us a lifetime of experiences. So capacity to remember things isn't the issue. The issue is having so much more information to filter through to get to what you're looking for.

The second reason I think it's harder is because modern society is causing us to have lower attention spans by constantly flashing short bits of tantalizing information that offers a quick reward but is of no lasting importance. Think Twitter and Fb updates and most TV news. We remember things most easily when the information is linked to a strong emotional impact. Which is why you'll never forget the name of foreign cities you got a flag in. When we are bombarded with so much information, each becomes less important, our attention spans become shorter and the shorter the attention span, the less emotional impact that information will have and the likelihood of associating a strong emotion with be diminished, thus making things harder to recall. I think this is one reason why kids pick up languages effortlessly while it'll be nearly impossible to teach a 60 year old to speak a new one.


RE: Remembering What You Read - kingjuice - 09-04-2013 01:54 PM

After you've finished a chapter, talk to yourself about what you've just read. Summarize it out loud.

That seems to help me retain more information.


RE: Remembering What You Read - emuelle1 - 09-04-2013 04:18 PM

What Roosh says is true. When you start seeing similar ideas pop up in different places, your brain starts building links to them.

A good way to take notes and link is to use the Personal Brain. It's like a mind map built on a relational database. You can link nodes together to see relationships between them. I've been using that lately with blog posts on game, economics, politics, feminism, etc. It's interesting to pull back and see which ideas influence other ideas.

The only drawback is it works on desktops and laptops. Might work on a Windows Pro tablet.