"I'm sorry, what's your name again?" We've all been there, with the lazy excuse of being "bad with names, but great with faces." As if that numbs the insult of forgetting a name we just heard. There are remarkable techniques for a bullet proof memory, but I won't bombard you with those just yet. Instead, here's a quick way to remember more names, with ease.

Why do we forget the name of someone we JUST MET? It brings me joy to reveal, you didn't. You simply never remembered in the first place! You were thinking of a topic, making judgements, and waiting for your own name to be said. It's the classic wrecking ball of a good first impression, which brings me to my first tip.

  • Remember to remember: A simple willingness to remember is essential. Commit yourself, and never be the one who says "I'm sorry, I'm great with faces but terrible with names." But a willingness to remember isn't enough. One must use it, or lose it. Might I remind you how much we love ourselves, and the names we associate with. We love to hear our name, it gives purpose and validation. 
  • Use it or lose it: Try to use their name 3 times in conversation. At first greeting, in conversation, and at departure. It's a great way to make a strong connection between names and faces. Remember, by using their name, you're not only making them feel good, but setting the stage for a great impression when you casually use it later. My 3rd tip is optional, but highly recommended.
  • Review: On your way home, run through names and faces of those you met. It's a good habit that may be difficult at first, but like anything else, gets better with practice. You'll be glad you did when you remember someone's name a month later, with no byplay like "uummm, don't tell me...It starts with a C....Craig." Only to find, his name is Phillip.

Let me reiterate, there's nothing quite like the comfort and confidence of knowing someone's name. it's a simple way to appear more friendly, with such little effort. And remember, impressions are made on small traits, never a single big one. I hope this helps you get a grip on the slippery surface of your short term memory.

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