Here’s a classic, tried-and-true routine that serves several purposes in the field. The Name Mnemonics Routine is a fun way to teach a group how visualizations is a more effective memory tool.
Oh, and by the way, if you’re unsure? It’s pronounced “neh-ma-nic.” The initial letter m is essentially silent.
But here’s why it’s such an effective tool. First, it helps you remember the names of people you meet. And as your skill grows, you’ll certainly be encountering more and more people to keep up with. Second, this routine can also be a demonstration of higher value (DHV) and be a fun activity to share among a recently-made group of friends.
Here’s a script:
HER: What’s your name?
YOU: I’m Joe.
HER: I’m Janet. This is Donna. And that guy over there is Tony.
YOU: Okay. Janet… Donna… Tony. [Direction: You need to pause between saying each name and looking at the individual.] You know, I used to be really bad with names.
HER: Oh my god, I am so bad with names.
YOU: But you don’t have to be anymore. Here, I’ll show you in two seconds. All I do when I’m introduced to you is make a picture in my head. So if you’re Janet, then I picture you with the head of Janet from the old television show Three’s Company. And for Donna, I just picture the dawn, the sun rising over your head. And for Tony, I see you on the front of a box of Frosted Flakes.
After going through the script, you can demonstrate. Grab a friend. Or, better yet, grab a stranger in the club you’d like to meet and teach them how to memorize someone’s first, middle, and last name.
Be sure to explain how name mnemonics works. Use the following script for your explanation.
YOU: Most people try to repeat someone’s name in their head to memorize it, but they always forget. This is because when you are a baby, you don’t have language. You have images and that’s how you interpret and understand the world. So making pictures is the best way to commit anything to memory.
As you wrap up, let your audience know that it’s not enough to just think about an image. They must really compose the picture in their minds and really “see” it.
Once you have finished with the routine, which should take just a couple of minutes, move on. Don’t dwell on it or try to expand it unless your listeners are passionately interested. However, later in the night or even on the phone later, test them and see if they remember the name of the person you brought out and demonstrated on.
If you’ve done your job correctly, they will never forget it — or you.