An old Chinese proverb declares that “the palest ink is better than the best memory.” And there’s a good reason for it! Relying on your memory can be tricky business.

When you think about the fact that:

You get exposed to more information in one day than a well-educated individual living in the 18th century encountered in a lifetime.

You have up to 80,000 thoughts a day.

You are bombarded with 4,000 messages daily in your environment.

It’s no wonder that you forget things!

If you find that you’re a little scatterbrained, here is how to improve your memory and feel more organized.

1) Memory Fitness

There are lots of reasons why you could forget something, but many of the common causes of memory loss are related to how well you take care of yourself. Stress, unhealthy diet, sleep deprivation – all lead to poor brain function. By taking care of your overall fitness, you’ll also be taking care of your memory’s fitness.

2) Memory Routines

One could argue that repetition is boring. However, if a regular routine has programmed you to always …

Meet your best friend at the gym every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 630am.

Call your mom at 2pm each Saturday.

Pay your bills on the 15th of the month.

… then you’re more likely to remember what needs to be done or where you need to be, and when.

3) Memory Cues

Putting a sticky note message on your bathroom mirror, setting a watch alarm to beep an hour before a big appointment, noting and checking to-do’s on your calendar, creating pop-up reminders in your email – these are all popular examples of memory cues. And they’re popular because they’re simple, and they work!

4) Memory Techniques

Sound complicated? Great news! Many of these techniques you learned as a child, like alliteration. An elementary example of alliteration would be “Susy sells sea shells by the sea shore.” Of course, that’s not likely to help you as a grown-up. Something like “Family Fridays,” “Menu Plan Mondays,” or “Bimonthly Bills” is more useful to the adult.

Another type of a memory technique is association, where you mentally link something with a way of remembering it. For example, your favorite radio show goes off the air at 9pm every night. When the DJ signs off, you associate that with packing lunches for the next day.

So the next time you need a memory jogger, try one (or more) of the above methods to boost your ability to recall the what’s, when’s, and where’s of life.

Tell me … what tricks do you use to help you improve your memory?

Author's Bio: 

Carmen Coker is a professional organizer who helps individuals find the motivation and know-how to get organized and stay organized. To learn how to save money, create more space, and manage your time through organization, register for the "FREE Tip Kit: 10+ Pages of Tips and Tools to Help You Get Organized - Finally!" at