This article is intended to give the reader a practical way of dealing with memory, rather than an academic version. The academic research and results have paved the way for us to think differently, out of the box when it comes to understanding the human body, or even existence. Whereas conventional thinking would evaluate that memory would work much as an electrical circuitry would, with relays and capacitors all lined up to make connections to a sequential and logical storage in a certain place. Yet this is not how memory works. Memory works in a much more non-localised manner.
One of the mysteries of the modern Psychology era is the understanding of how memory works. We can go back to the early experiments on conditioned reflex by Pavlov and later work by Andrew Salter, but it was the work of Karl Pribram, Karl Lashley, Wilder Penfield, Dennis Gabor and David Bohm which brought us into a quantum way of thinking about memory. Or should I say a holographic way of thinking.
In this theory, a piece of a long-term memory is similarly distributed over a dendritic arbor so that each part of the dendritic network contains all the information stored over the entire network. This model allows for important aspects of human consciousness, including the fast-associative memory that allows for connections between different pieces of stored information and the non-locality of memory storage (a specific memory is not stored in a specific location, i.e. a certain neuron).Quote from Wiki:
That’s all very nice, but how does that relate to our own personal memory?
What we need to know, to begin with, is that you and I have millions of ways of storing and recalling memory. Nobody really has a ‘bad memory’ unless there is severe neural damage across the whole brain. What we do have is poor strategies for remembering, or some trauma around the process too. And the third way of having a poor memory, is to put too much pressure on yourself to do it (which may relate to the first way).
Memory and NLP
When I was working with the UK government running a training (previous Labour Government), one of the senior decision makers asked me to work with him personally on his memory. We booked in five sessions, to make sure it would be done. With my knowledge of how these things work, I knew it would be much less than that, but to give me re-assurance we booked those in. We were done in one!
He told me of the issue, which was not remembering things under pressure. I listened and repeated back what he thought was the issue. Then I surprised him. Most clients are thinking I’m now going to put them into a ‘mind gym’, giving them instructions and exercises to do and take away homework. Something like memorising pages of a book and showing them mind strategies to do that. What I did instead was to ask him “what do you think about yourself having a poor memory?” He replied, “I feel stupid”. I said, “let’s work on that then instead!” Saying “let’s work on that instead” was an intentional comment to put aside the pressure (that I knew he was putting on himself to have a perfect memory under pressure) and focus on something else. Of course, the intention is to work on the memory.
When I started to contact his deeper mind (subconscious), he almost immediately came up with a related memory. I can’t say what the memory was for confidentiality reasons, yet it was when he was young and in the presence of a good friend. From that point onwards, he has decided he really ‘had’ to remember under pressure (and that’s way too much pressure for the mind to deal with). We cleaned up that memory using Time Based Techniques. Towards the end of the session, I did give him some what I call “mind management” tools. Like being aware of internal bullying language: Anything with “have to” “must” “should” “need” “everyone else” “better than” and so on. These phrases literally bully the subconscious mind and cause it to shut down.
I also taught him a state of consciousness to enable him to be present more and more, (The Now State) which also can filter out negative language and un-useful patterns. Yet it was the memory which has been mostly impinging on his memory, and when we let that free, we freed up his ability to get his precious commodity back. A free mind.