Memory aids, tools and strategies

5. A problem-solving approach

When applying strategies for remembering things, you might find it helpful to follow these steps:

Identify the problem

Example: ‘I sometimes forget people’s names.’

Decide how much it matters to you

Example: It happens a lot. It can be embarrassing. (It may be that some things matter a great deal, like forgetting a close friend’s name. But will it really matter much if you forget the name of a celebrity who you’re unlikely to meet?)

Think about how you might help yourself

Example: ‘I could carry a small photo album with people’s names next to their photos or save them as contacts with photos in my mobile phone. Or I could tell people I’m a bit forgetful, ask for their name, and then repeat it in conversation.’ (Other examples are given on the following pages.)

Practise your strategies and see what works for you

Example: Rehearse your strategies with a close friend or partner. They can support you to learn. You will then feel more confident when you go out.