If we look closely, numbers are all around us. Phone numbers, house numbers, passwords, ZIP codes, birthdays, anniversaries, flight numbers, hotel room numbers – numbers are everywhere. But with time, we’ve lost the ability to remember numbers because they are abstract. Anything abstract can be difficult to grasp and understand. But not impossible. With a little help from tried and tested methods, we can remember the numbers easily.
So, get ready to stun the world by saying their phone numbers in a jiffy.
Let’s explore the effective techniques to memorise numbers as suggested by Jim Kwik , our expert brain coach. He helps us unlock our mind, and increase mental fitness and performance. Furthermore, we also delve deeper into understanding how to improve memory with numbers.
Jim Kwik suggests that we can follow three kinds of lists to remember numbers better. We can take our pick from the list.
The lists are: The Sun List | The Visual List | The Auditory List
Let’s begin with the Sun List and learn how to improve memory and remember numbers by this technique.
As I said before, numbers are abstract, making it difficult for us to remember them. But what if we remove the abstract and give numbers a form.
The Sun List helps us convert the abstract facet of numbers into a form. All we’ve to do is associate each number from 1-20 with a particular object – something simple, from our daily lives.
|Number 0 = Egg||Number 1 = Sun|
|Number 2 = Socks||Number 3 = Traffic Lights|
|Number 4 = Car (Wheels)||Number 5 = Star (Corners)|
|Number 6 = Soda (Typical 6-cans pack)||Number 7 = Rainbow (7 Colours)|
|Number 8 = Octopus (8 Tentacles)||Number 9 = Cat (Lives)|
|Number 10 = Toes (10 Toes on the feet)||Number 11 = Skis (2 Skis look like two 1s)|
|Number 12 = Roses (Dozen Roses)||Number 13 = Witch (Bad Luck)|
|Number 14 = Gold (14 Carats)||Number 15 = Money (Tax Day (July 15 in USA)|
|Number 16 = Candles (Important 16th birthday)||Number 17 = Magazine (Teenage Magazine)|
|Number 18 = Truck (18 Wheels)||Number 19 = Golf (19th Hole, the bar)|
|Number 20 = Fox (20th Century Fox, (Famous American Film Studio)|
This list can help us remember numbers in an effective way. Once we are done associating the numbers with images, we’ve to make a chain list to remember numbers.
For example, to memorise the number 631, all we have to do is associate the numbers with the Sun List images.
6 = Soda, 3 = Traffic Lights, 1 = Sun.
This makes the whole process of remembering numbers easier.
Next, we move on to understand how to improve memory and remember the numbers better with the Visual List.
Do you ever feel that some numbers resemble objects around us? If yes, that’s what we have to apply here. The basic rule of the Visual List is to look for objects that remind us of numbers. Again, keep these objects simple and easy to recall.
|Number 1 reminds us of an ‘Antenna’||Number 2 reminds us of a ‘Swan’|
|Number 3 reminds us of a ‘Heart’||Number 4 = Sail Boats|
|Number 5 = Hooks||Number 6 = Elephant’s Trunk|
|Number 7 = Hockey Stick||Number 8 = Snowman|
|Number 9 = Balloon with a string||Number 10 = Bat and ball|
So when we have a long number to remember, we just have to recall the things that resemble the number and voila! The number is ready.
But let’s not stop at the look of the numbers. Let’s explore the sound of the numbers as we make the auditory list and understand how to improve memory.
What do the numbers ‘sound’ like? That’s what we’ve to focus on here. We need to think of objects that rhyme with the numbers.
|Number 1 rhymes with ‘Bun’||Number 2 rhymes with ‘Shoe’|
|Number 3 rhymes with ‘Tree’||Number 4 = Door|
|Number 5 = Hive||Number 6 = Sticks|
|Number 7 = Heaven||Number 8 = Gate|
|Number 9 = Wine||Number 10 = Zen|
Get the drift? Use the same technique as the Sun List and Visual List to remember numbers and get going.
So, we’ve the Sun List, Visual List, and Auditory List that make memorising numbers simpler. If we’re focusing on the aspect of how to improve memory, then these lists help us. With the three lists, we’re training our brain on how to improve memory, building our mental muscles, and remembering numbers easily.
How do I improve memory and make the most of these techniques?
- T.I.P – Turn Into Picture: Remembering pictures is better than numbers. So, turn numbers into pictures to remember the numbers better
- Imagine it to remember it: If we can imagine the object or sound associated with the number, we can remember it better.
- Create our own list: We can use Visual or Auditory basic association to create our own lists
How can I share the Knowledge?
Here’re the action points
- Make a list and teach someone the technique
- Pick any number and translate them into images and stories
- Share your results on Wellfeelife’s social media handle (and hit like)
Moving on, do you ever wonder how people in earlier centuries remembered numbers?
Let’s follow their cues and learn from them how to improve memory.
What is the Ancient Code for Remembering Numbers?
The ancient code for remembering numbers was developed by a French mathematician in the 1600s. Quite likely, the answer to how to improve memory can be in our history textbooks.
This ancient exercise allows us to boost our focus, imagination, and concentration levels.
Using the 10 consonant sounds in the English language, we assign each digit to a specific sound. So, when we see a particular number, we recognise the sounds and the images associated with it.
Hence, here are particular sounds for every digit.
|Number 0 = S, Z, C (Soft)||Number 1 = T, TH, D|
|Number 2 = N||Number 3 = M|
|Number 4 = R||Number 5 = L|
|Number 6 = J, SH, CH, G (Soft)||Number 7 = K, C (Hard), G (Hard)|
|Number 8 = F, V||Number 9 = P, B|
But how do we remember these sounds? Here’s an effective memory tool – Basic association. It simplifies and triggers faster memorisation in our minds.
|Number 0 = S, C (Soft), Z Basic association: Draw a circle and insert the letter ‘S’ like Superman. Or associate Z with the masked crusader – Zorro||Number 1 = T, TH, D Basic association: T and TH resemble Number 1, whereas D resembles like number 1 with a belly.|
|Number 2 = N Basic association: With two down strokes, Number 2 resembles the lower case ‘n’||Number 3 = M Basic association: 3M, the company that manufactures post-its.|
|Number 4 = R Basic association: Resembles a person playing golf, with the golf stick in hand and ready to hit the ball.||Number 5 = L Basic association: Count five in your fingers and your hand forms an ‘L’ shape|
|Number 6 = J, SH, CH, G (Soft) Basic association: The number resembles ‘J’ and is also a mirror image of the letter ‘G’||Number 7 = K, C (Hard), G (Hard) Basic association: The letter ‘K’ looks like it’s made up of two ‘7s’|
|Number 8 = F, V Basic association: The V8 brand of vegetable juices||Number 9 = P, B Basic association: The mirror image of number ‘9’ is the letter P, and turning it upside down gives us lower case ‘B’|
Are we clear? To make this exercise flawless, here’re the four golden rules of the ancient code system:
- Vowels (A,E, I, O, U) have no value in the ancient code of remembering numbers
- Silent letters don’t hold any significance in this system
- The letters W, H, and Y have no worth in this ancient code
- Letters getting repeated in this system are only counted once
How do we become perfect in this technique?
- Use the numbers 0 – 9
- Assign a consonant sound to each number
- Practice and review the alphanumeric code of memory
How to Apply Ancient Codes in Modern Times?
If we keep thinking about ‘how to improve memory’, it’s not going to train our brain. Instead, applying these ancient codes can be a good start.
Let’s look at the word TABLE
T = 1,
A = Vowel (no value)
B = 9
L = 5
E = Vowel (No value)
So TABLE = T, B, L = 195
What do you think a CARPET is?
C = 7
A = Vowel (no value)
R = 4
P = 9
E = Vowel (No value)
T = 1
So CARPET = C, R, P, T = 7491
Here’s a tricky one: BUTTER
B = 9
U =Vowel (no value)
T = 1
R = 4
So BUTTER = B, T, R = 914
*(As per the ancient codes rule, since it’s repeated, the letter ‘T’ is only taken once)
Does this code make memorising numbers and dates easier?
These mental exercises not only build our brain power but they also boost our memorising capabilities. Also, turning a word into a number may be challenging. But converting a number into words using the sounds can improve our memory.
Just keep in mind that when memorising numbers or dates, choose a picture that’s easy to recall and associate.
|Remembering Numbers 72: CAN Where 7 = C, A = Vowel (no value), N = 2||Remembering Dates July 20th 1969 = 7, 20, 69 = 7, 2, 0, 6 , 9 = C, N, S, SH, P = CANS SHIP|
By doing this, the numerals have a whole new life infused into them, and we can create a story around it. As a result, pictures and sounds are more memorable than abstract numbers.
So, if you ever thought how to improve memory with numbers (sincerely, this is one of my weaknesses), here we go! This amazing, natural and incredibly effective technique is now here at your service.
How about we build a brand new list? A list that’s not limited to just 10 digits; it can go on to 50, or even 100.
|91 = P, T = PIT (The letter ‘I’ is a vowel, so no value)||83 = F, M = FAME (The letters ‘A’ and ‘E’ are vowels, so no value)|
|73 = C, M = COME (The letters ‘O’ and ‘E’ are vowels, so no value)||62 = CH, N = CHIN (The letter ‘I’ in a vowel, so no value)|
|58 = L, V = LIVE (The letters ‘I’ and ‘E’ are vowels, so no value)|
Finally, it’s time for some action points and learnings that most certainly guide us in implementing numbers in a much better way.
Let’s see how we can master this technique:
- Make sure that you use the numeric code to come up with a picture for 1 to 100
- Revise the sounds assigned for each digit
- Remember the four golden rules of the ancient code system, listed in this article
As rightly stated by Oliver Wendell Holmes, “A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”
Having learned these new techniques for memorising numbers has opened up new possibilities for us. From not being good with numbers, we have become confident with them, thanks to the alphanumeric codes. But we should not forget the most important aspect. Practice. Because only practicing can help us conquer our fear of numbers. So let’s keep practicing and ace this technique in the best possible way.
Have a Good Day & Life
Wellness Lover & Explorer