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Memory Magic Course Week 4 - Memory Associations - Part 3: The Journey Lists

This is the last part of the mini-series introducing the three main ways to remember a list.

The first two methods are:

1. Paired Associates: (States and Capitols; Names and Faces; etc.)

2. Linked Lists: (Grocery list; Agenda in a meeting; etc.)


A journey list is simply a way to help you to recall a list of items. The JOURNEY is the thing you already KNOW. The information you WANT to remember are the NEW things you associate to the journey.

A journey could be any series of steps that you know well. It could be the rooms in your house, or the furniture in one room of your house. It could be the path to work. It could be the human body as in the old song 'The head bone connected to the neck bone; the neck bone connected to the back bone.' So you'd follow a systematic path down the human body. That's a journey.

The important point about a Journey list is that you ALWAYS go through the journey in the same way; you take the same path. Then you'd associate the things that you want to remember to each step along the path.

So, you're still associating one thing to another thing. The OLD thing that you know would be one step along the path, then the NEW thing would be associated to one of the steps in the journey.

Although a Journey is still a sequential list of steps like a Linked List, you DON'T have to go through a Journey step by step in order to remember an item in the middle of the list. Just think of one of the steps in the journey and you'll be reminded of the item at that step. 

A Journey is often used to present a speech. It is also called a Loci system. It was developed and used by ancient Greek orators. They would imagine the first place in their home and associate it to the first point of their speech. Then the second place would be associated to the second point in their speech. And that is where the phrase 'In the first place...' came from!

SUMMARY: So the three main ways to remember a list of items are:1. Paired Associates2. Linked List3. Journey Method

Remembering is nothing more than associating one thing to another thing. Everything that you need to remember can be broken down to small, individual steps like this.

Practice remembering whenever you can and you will get better and better at it. I use the Journey Method to recall playing cards.