Wednesday, March 04, 2015

A tip for remembering names

It's happened to us all at some point: You run into someone who's ecstatic see you. They instantly recognize you and begin talking a mile a minute about that one time when that one thing happened. And all the while, you can't think of their name, let alone that great thing that apparently happened. Their name...

It's...

On...

The...

Tip...

Of...

Your...

Tongue...

It can be frustrating, I know. On more than one occasion, I've been out and about shopping and someone will come up to me and say, "Oh, hi, Melissa! It's so good to see you! I was the nurse in the hospital when you were born."

I won't pretend that my face didn't turn a shade of red brighter than my wheelchair in these instances. Eventually, I have to awkwardly ask for their name. I can't help but feel a bit defeated and a bit embarrassed at my lapse in memory. I can remember what I did May 1997, but names? They sometimes elude me for some inexplicable reason.

But! As it turns out, there are helpful name-remembering tricks out there. Malia Wollan wrote a short piece for last weekend's New York Times magazine. She interviewed Indira Pun, who has worked as chief concierge at the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong for the last 11 years.
"Your brain needs to be like a camera," Pun says. "Take a picture in your mind of a unique thing about that person and register that uniqueness with their name. Use the name two or three times during the first interaction."
How cool is that? Such a handy trick, and I'll definitely be trying it out the next time I want to remember someone's name and avoid that red-faced embarrassment. What about you, friends? How do you remember people's names? Any helpful tips or tricks that have worked in the past? Do share! xoxo

[Photos via We Heart It]

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