With all of the sharing, posting, texting and multitasking in today’s world, there is no doubt that many of us are losing our ability not only to focus, but to remember. When’s the last time someone told you their name and you remembered it without having to ask? Or the last time that you read an article, a blog post or news story and could actually recall what was said at the beginning of the text? For many of us, these situations are representative of our reality and signify just how shallow our attention and memory really is.

While memorization and quick recall may not be a necessary skill in today’s digital world, it is something we can certainly count on to sharpen our brains, and keep us going in the case in which technology fails. The following is a quick compilation of memory tips and tricks from TIME and PureWow.

Tip 1: Challenge Yourself

Brain games, both on and off the screen while entertaining, also develop your concentration and delay brain decline according to studies. Crossword puzzles, along with games like LumosityScramble with FriendsWords with Friends, Sudoku and Elevate are great and easy ways to keep your brain active. Instead of mindlessly scrolling through the newsfeed, or pinning from the Home Feed, try using your screen for good!

 

Tip 2: Jog Your Memory

Endorphins and a healthier body are not the only benefits of a regular exercise routine. According to studies out of the University of California Irvine, a little exercise can go a long way when it comes to helping improve your memory. During exercise, norepinephrine, the “brain-growing” chemical stimulates your hippocampus (the part that controls memory) and increases your mental capacity to remember. Want to remember where you put your keys or what you had for lunch? Just take a quick jog–researchers recommend 20 minutes daily–and watch your things magically stay where you swear you’ve put them.

 

Tip 3: Keep Learning

Nothing keeps your brain more stagnant than routine. In order to keep our minds sharp and continue cultivating our memory, we must dedicate ourselves to learning and exploring. Learning new skills and trying new things is how our brains develop and retain new information. The more information we learn, the better able we are to recall it. Learning and breaking routine is easier than you think though, and is as simple as picking up a new hobby, reading a new genre of book, exploring a new grocery store or learning to knit. Keep learning, keep remembering.

 

Tip 4: Choose Simplicity

Take a moment to be in the moment. One reason we cannot remember where we put our keys is because we weren’t even paying attention when we put them down. Whether we’re at home, in the office or with a friend, we always seem to be doing more than just one thing. For many of us, multitasking is a way of life. We’re listening to music, while watching TV and also browsing the web. While multitasking is certainly time effective, it isn’t mentally effective. Giving everything your continuous, but only partial attention not only damages your ability to remember, it also damages your ability to be fully present. Knowing that it takes a full 8 seconds to commit information or stimuli to memory, this is extremely problematic. We’re intentionally preventing retention. So, instead of trying to get everything done at once, pick one thing and choose to be fully engaged with/in it. Work hard to keep from surfing the web while eating or watching TV while on the phone. Choose presence and engagement. Choose simplicity.

 

The mission at Just Be is to help you do what you do best while we do the rest. While these tips are not problem or life elixirs, they are simple and easy ways to not only improve your memory, but to live balanced and whole lives. We’d love to hear your tips for living in the moment and being wholly yourself!