My Least Favorite Memory Technique

When using memory techniques, it is a hard decision to pick one to use because they all have their pros and cons. Sometimes one technique fits perfectly to what you need to learn. But there is one technique I have never used to memorize anything… The Russian Doll Method.

The Russian Doll method works by having an object like a bike you are connecting information to. Let’s say we are memorizing words. The first word is a pizza so maybe you picture the pizza on the bike seat. The next part that gets a bit weird.

The next word to memorize is cow. Instead of making a story with the bike and pizza, you actually zoom in on the pizza and pick a place on the pizza to store the word cow. Maybe you place the cow on the crust or a pepperoni.

Then if you have another word like plane, you would zoom in on the cow and place the plane on the cow. Maybe you choose the head of the cow or the tail. You would continue the process for the rest of the words.

When you start to recall the information, you start with the original item you used to store the info. So you would see the bike then zoom in on the seat and see the pizza. Then you would see the pizza and zoom in to see the cow. And so on.

This is the basic idea. You can even take it a step further and use the different parts of the bike, cow, pizza, and plane. You can use the bike seat for pizza but use the handle bars to store a brand new list of words then Russian doll those words.

I can see the potential benefit of using this method where one item can contain multiple lists of information which is cool! You don’t need to create palaces ahead of time like the memory palace method. You get your locations in the Russian Doll method from the information.

The issue I have with this method is using the next level of images as a peg for the next set of info. These are all images I am picturing so they are not going to be clear. So relying on the nested images to be clear as the first image would be a struggle.

When I use a memory palace, I actually saw the location in real life so there is detail I can see. This is why I am able to memorize quickly while using a memory palace.

The Russian Doll method just doesn’t seem like it would work as great since you are creating locations on the spot and relying on the nested images to be clear. It is possible I don’t understand the Russian Doll method fully but as far as I understand, the Russian Doll method is not for me.

What do you think about the Russian Doll method? Do you use it? Am I misunderstanding something?

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