Remembering Names

Normally when people are introduced to other people, there is a rote ritual that
they go through like, "This is so and so " and "I am so and so, glad to meet you"
etc., and seconds later, neither one remembers the other's name. You fumble in the
conversation trying to cover up your forgetfulness while you try desperately to recall
the name. Some people even announce in advance, "I never remember names,"
almost like a form of bragging; or maybe in an attempt to establish a camaraderie with
a host of others who share the same non-admirable trait. This also relieves them of
the responsibility in their minds of remembering your name, or the name of anyone
else they meet. Nevertheless, people like hearing their name, and if you remember it,
they're flattered and impressed with you more than if you forget it.
If you consciously keep your wits about you when you're being introduced,
you'll find recall much easier. For instance, take a few seconds to record and
reiterate in your mind the person's name. Decide to yourself to remember it. Repeat
it aloud immediately afterwards, (people love to hear their name repeated) and maybe
ask the person how it's spelled. Repeat it in your conversation and visualize it
written in bold letters on one of the person's body parts -- breasts, head, buttocks,
etc. Distort the prominent feature of the individual body part to accommodate the
letters. Be outlandishly creative. Perhaps the name itself reminds you of some
ridiculous imagery.
Usually the first part of the name is all that's necessary to create your mental
picture. For instance, visualize Mr. Ashely with his face or body buried in ashes.
Visualize Mrs. Rosen with roses in her nose, ears and mouth. Make an affirmation to
yourself right now to remember every name of every person to whom you are
introduced. Repeat new name associations periodically to yourself throughout the
day, and have a mental set ready for new introductions.
In any social situation, a person considers his name as very important. Getting a
person's name wrong is perhaps the only thing worse than not remembering it at all.
As an exercise, use the above technique and memorize the following:
1st manned space flight - Yuri Gagarin - April 12, 1961, on spacecraft Vostok I
for 1 hour 48 minutes and 1 orbit.
1st woman in space - Valentina V. Tereshkova - June 16 to 19, 1963, on
spacecraft Vostok 6 for 70 hours 50 minutes and 48 orbits.