External Memory Tools
External strategies are memory aids that rely on resources such as notebooks and lists. They may seem obvious, but they are incredibly helpful. Which ones to do already use? Do they help?
∑ ďTo DoĒ List
Write down things that you need to do. For example, make a phone call, bake a cake. Check off each item when it is done. You can also make lists for groceries or other things that you have get while running errands. Make sure to bring a pen along with you, so that you can check off each thing as you get it.
∑ Calendar and Appointment Book
Use a calendar (you can often get small, purse-size ones at the bank) to write down your appointments, social commitments and other important dates like birthdays and anniversaries.
∑ Note pad
Itís handy to carry a small notepad in your purse, or to leave a notepad near your telephone so that you can write down important information that you may want to remember later. Itíll help keep you on track.
Post-It Notes the ultimate note pad! They are handy because you can stick them in important spots, like right on your front door, so you can remember your note when you are leaving the house.
∑ Medication Boxes
Medication boxes, or dosettes, are a handy way to keep track of when you have to take your medication. The small plastic boxes have a separate compartment for each day of the week, and you can also get ones that have separate compartments for morning, and night. Youíll never forget when to take your pills again.
∑ Memory Places
Store items that you use everyday in the same place. Store items that you donít use as often in different place. If you use something, try to put it back in itís special place immediately after you finish using it, so that it can be found easily the next time. So often we become lazy and say that weíll put something away later. When later comes, we often forget where we left it, or we look for it in itís normal place, and itís not there!
∑ Visible cues
Use items as clues as often as you can. For example, if you have to bring your jacket to the dry cleaner, hang your jacket in a visible place where you are likely to see it on your way out. Putting it back in the closet might mean that you forget about it. Another tip is to leave notes where you will see them, for example, on the fridge or on the mirror in the bathroom. Post-It notes come in handy for this. Place notes in lots of different places to give yourself many chances to see it and remember!