Remember Names and Faces

by Bob Walsh

It is a skill to remember names and faces. Some people are naturally talented and it comes easy to them. For others it is difficult, and they tend to forget and confuse names. If you want to improve your ability to remember names and faces, you will find helpful advice on this website.

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One of the first things you want to do when you get introduced to someone is to pay attention. Many times in these social situations, the name of another person enters our head through one ear and goes straight out again the other ear.

Simply concentrating on the other person’s name is the first, very simple step to better remember his or her name.

Next, repeat their name at least three times in the next minute. The most obvious way to do this is of course just saying: “Nice to meet, Antonio”.

But after that, it can get a little weird if you repeat another person’s name too often in a conversation. But that isn’t even necessary – you can just as well repeat the person’s name in your own head while you watch their face.

There are many mental tricks that can help you to better remember a person’s name and you might want to try different methods to see which works best for you.

One method is to think: “Whom do I know that has the same name?” In our example, we used the name Antonio, so let’s stick with that.

If you don’t know anyone in your personal life whose name is Antonio, maybe the first person that comes to mind could be Antonio Banderas.

What you can do now is to imagine your Antonio, and Antonio Banderas engaging in some kind of interaction together – could be your Antonio hits Antonio Banderas, or they hug each other, or whatever is most memorable to you. It should be a vivid scene, and if it is slightly bizarre, that just makes it easier to remember it.

Then, next time when you see this guys face, you will think how he hit Antonio Banderas on the face and that will remind you of the name Antonio.

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Another method to remember names and faces is to break the name down into memorable parts. For example, let’s take an exotic name like Aunyamanee. You could break that down into Aun-Ya-Manee. That also doesn’t help a lot, but Aun reminds me of the word “on”, “ya” reminds me of Bob Marley calling his rastafari God and “manee” reminds me of money. So I imagine an on-switch that activates Bob Marley singing “Ja is great” while he shakes a firstfull of money into the air.

Again, you notice that this is quite an absurd picture – but that is what your memory loves. It sticks in your brain. If you are not used to it, in the beginning it might seem difficult to come up with matching associations, but when you practice it every day, you will see that it becomes natural very fast.

Finally, you can use hypnosis to improve your natural ability to remember names and faces. Your brain is designed to remember faces (neuroscientists found that there are separate functional units in your brain that specialize in brain recognition). And it has the ability to remember random sounds, which is what names oftentimes are and connect that to faces – maybe for some reason this natural ability has been submerged at some point in your life, and all it takes is to reactivate it. And that’s what hypnosis is good for.

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