How to Overcome Memory Block
Academically, we all remember a moment when we practiced something or memorized something, but when you try to recall that information, it just isn’t there anymore.
Or, maybe, in a more realistic scenario, you celebrated someone’s birthday last year and the year before, but can’t seem to remember that date anymore.
This is called a memory block. It’s the human equivalent of server downtime where our memory has the capability to perform a specific task. But, it’s unable to do that for whatever specific reason.
Today, we're going to dive even deeper and talk about what a memory block is exactly, what causes it, and how to overcome it.
As you'll see below, there are plenty of ways to overcome a memory block, and the vast majority of them are 100% natural, things that you can do at home on your own time.
- Having a mental block means that you can't remember things properly.
- Memory blocks may be caused by stress, lack of sleep, improper nutrition, and various other factors.
- Eating right and taking supplements, sleeping more, exercising, and a multitude of other activities can all help improve your ability to remember.
What is a Memory Block?
Technically speaking, a memory block is known as a short or temporary lapse in memory retrieval that leaves you blank for a moment. You might not be able to recall a specific memory or fact right away, or the block might be more widespread, which means that you just have general troubles with memory.
Some people may define it as an inability to continue with a train of thought. The bottom line here is that if you're having trouble finding the right words when you speak, recalling certain details of your life, or you just constantly forget where you put your keys, then you might have a memory block.
Some of the most common symptoms of a memory block include your brain feeling sluggish and slow.
You might also notice an inability to make quick decisions, making a lot of minor errors in the tasks that you should have already mastered a long time ago, avoiding difficult work, difficulty coming up with creative ideas, and constantly thinking about the same issues over and over again without managing to come to a solution.
If you are suffering from a memory block, and this goes on for a prolonged period of time, it can seriously affect your academic, professional, and personal life. Memory is an integral part of our daily lives and blocks can severely decrease your quality of life.
Find out how to overcome brain fog!
What Causes Memory Block?
In simplest terms, a memory block is an inability to remember, but what causes this? Let's take a quick look at some of the biggest causes of memory block.
One of the biggest causes of memory block and a general lack of ability to focus or concentrate is stress. When your brain is stressed out, you can't easily remember things, because your brain is in survival mode, not memory mode. Your brain is using its resources just to keep itself alive and functioning, rather than to remember various details.
Furthermore, when you feel more stressed out, your body produces this stress hormone, cortisol. Although this is great for survival, it also serves to keep you in a heightened state of alertness.
You might think that this is good for memory, but increased levels of cortisol over the long term are actually shown to have negative effects on both memory and concentration.
Much simpler than stress, your overall workload can also have a big impact on your ability to remember. If you have a million things on the go at once, it's hard to remember any one detail.
If you have a very light workload with just a single task to accomplish, chances are you'll be able to remember it much easier than if you have a fully packed schedule with dozens of daily tasks. The more you have to do, the harder it is to remember any one thing.
Nutrition and Hydration
The reality is that one of the biggest determining factors in terms of your memory is your nutrition and hydration. First and foremost, your brain needs water to function properly, which is also the case for a wide variety of nutrients.
Your brain requires a plethora of proteins, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and other substances to function properly.
Each of these nutrients or substances plays its own critical role in your cognitive abilities, memory, focus, and more. If you aren't feeding your brain the proper nutrients it needs, then your ability to remember will be greatly decreased.
Although not exactly one of the leading causes, your own perfectionism may be your downfall in terms of your memory recall. If you are a perfectionist, you'll often focus on perfecting one simple task, while neglecting everything else. This might just lead you to forget everything else but the one task you're focused on.
Another issue that may be causing you to not be able to remember certain things is self-doubt. Self doubt is an interesting one, because even though you might be able to remember things, self doubt forces you to call your memory into question. You end up asking yourself if it's actually a memory or if you're imagining things.
Going back to a much larger determining factor in your ability to remember is sleep. In fact, sleep might just be the number one driving factor here. A lack of sleep affects both your short-term and long-term memory.
Furthermore, sleep is also very important for memory consolidation, most of which happens during the sleep cycle. In other words, new memories aren't consolidated into long-term memories if you don't sleep enough, which essentially leads to a total lack of long-term memory.
The other leading cause of a memory block is age, or in other words, age-related memory decline. Things like working memory, processing speed, and long-term memory all steadily decline as we get older. This is often associated with a decreased amount of blood flowing to the brain as we get older.
How to Overcome Memory Block
Now that we know what all of the major causes of memory block are, let's take a closer look at some of the best ways to overcome this memory block.
Reduce Stress Levels
If stress is a leading cause of memory block, then the obvious solution here is to reduce your stress level. Now, reducing stress levels may be easier said than done, because how you do so really depends on your individual lifestyle and issues causing stress.
For instance, if work is causing you stress, then the solution is to work less. If it's your kids causing you stress, then having them go to a babysitter once per week might be the solution. The point here is that you have to find some way to reduce the amount of stressors in your life.
Reduce Your Workload
Related to stress, but also independent, reducing your workload may also help you get over the memory block. Simply put, if you have way too many things on your plate, remembering any single one of your daily tasks or responsibilities becomes very difficult.
If you just have way too much to do, then remembering any specific detail at all becomes very difficult. As soon as you reduce your workload, you should also see an increase in your ability to remember.
If a leading cause of memory block is not eating right, then the obvious solution is to eat better. A healthy adult should drink around eight cups of water per day, and also have a nutritionally balanced diet.
This means eating enough proteins, omega-3 fatty acids, anti-inflammatories, antioxidants, minerals, and other vitamins to help support your brain health.
You might be surprised to see just how beneficial eating a nutritionally balanced diet can be for your brain, your memory, and your overall cognitive abilities.
As covered above, perhaps the number one leading factor in memory block and a general inability to remember is a lack of sleep.
Human beings need anywhere between six and eight hours of sleep per night, with closer to eight being the ideal. If you're only getting a few hours of sleep per night, your brain will be cognitively impaired, with memory being just one of the functions to suffer.
Do Memory Exercises
Interesting to note is that there are exercises you can do for your brain that help train your memory. There are plenty of memory and matching games out there that force you to use your brain.
Just like your muscles get bigger and stronger when you exercise them at the gym, your brain also gets stronger when you exercise it through mental exercises.
There are many old-school options out there, but if you pick up your smartphone and go to your app store, there are plenty of memory and mind games designed specifically for this purpose.
Physical Activity Helps
Although physical activity might not be the first thing you think of when it comes to improving your memory and cognitive abilities, it is actually quite important.
One of the main reasons for this is because physical activity gets your blood flowing, which means that your brain starts receiving more blood, and therefore more oxygen and nutrients.
However, it also goes further than that, because exercise helps to release a variety of feel good hormones, with dopamine and serotonin being the two main ones.
Both serotonin and dopamine are associated with mood regulation, cognitive abilities, and memory. Exercise may also reduce cortisol levels, which in turn reduces the amount of stress to feel, therefore also benefiting your ability to remember.
Use Memory Aids
Although it's not exactly a hack to help improve your memory, if all else fails, you can use memory aids. In other words, write down the most important things that you need to remember on a regular basis.
If none of the above seem to help, the other option you have at your disposal is to consider a variety of supplements, which really comes back to nutrition. One of the best supplements for brain health out there is VYU TUNE IN.
This is a fantastic supplement that you can mix in with water or other beverages, and it comes in many great flavors. Furthermore, it's loaded with a variety of beneficial ingredients that may all help benefit your brain health.
These include, but are not limited to, ashwagandha extract, Rhodiola rosea, alpha GPC, cordyceps, lion’s mane, BioPerine, various B vitamins, and more. In their own ways, each of these ingredients have great potential in terms of your memory and overall cognitive abilities. Find out how to use mushrooms for brain fog and what some of the best mushrooms for brain fog are.
The bottom line is that your memory is one of the most important things you have, and it's something that you need for virtually every aspect in your everyday life.
Therefore, taking the time out of your day to perform various activities which can help improve your memory and slow down age-related memory loss is crucial. One of the easiest and best ways to go about this is by taking TUNE IN.
Overcoming Memory Block: FAQs
Let's take a quick look at some of the most frequently asked questions about overcoming memory blocks.
How do I Fix Memory Blocking?
To fix memory block, sleep better, eat right, exercise more, and just take care of yourself in general.
How Do You Unblock a Mental Block?
To unblock a mental block, you need to take care of the underlying issues that are causing it in the first place.
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