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Camille Styles

Work Life

Why Being Forgetful Might Be A Good Thing

February 1st, 2018

featured image by taylr anne

I swear I’m an intelligent gal. But ask me what I did last weekend, or even what I ate for breakfast this morning, and it’s fairly unlikely I’ll have an answer. If I don’t write something down, I won’t remember to do it. I also once thought that my car was stolen because I forgot I parked it in a different lot than usual. (Seriously—I started nervous sweating and everything.) My friends and coworkers often laugh at my forgetfulness, but a new study suggests that I may, in fact, just have a smarter brain.

A study published in 2017 by researchers at the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research found that being forgetful means your brain is automatically processing what is important information (and what isn’t). If the brain decides that certain information is irrelevant, it will get rid of it in order to make room for more substantial information.

Transience is the brain trying to forget. Persistence is the brain trying to remember. These two processes basically work in sync to enable your brain to make decisions in the future. By getting rid of irrelevant information, it makes room for that which is more pertinent to your life.

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4 Comments
  1. Eva says:

    My husband jokes that I have so much useless info because I remember the most random things! It makes me great at jeopardy, but doesn’t serve me well in real life. Meanwhile he forgets everything mundane and remembers exact numbers and things you’re supposed to remember! It seems our memories work in such different ways, but I still need to write everything down to stay organized!

    Eva | http://www.shessobright.com

  2. […] being forgetful might actually be […]

  3. landrybaby says:

    My husband and family members are astonished when I pull up names, events, addresses and even phone numbers from the past. I haven’t a clue as to why that type of random information has stayed locked in my brain. Other things I should remember can vanish from my mind on a whim. I have tried a thousand ways “be on time”. I do great with projects, business meetings, deadlines, responding to emails, returning calls and picking up kids; but I fail miserably at arriving on time to appointments (doctor, dentist, hairstylist), social engagements and family events. I promise myself every time I am tardy that I will allow more time to prepare or watch the clock more closely to avoid yet another embarrassing late arrival. I have yet to succeed! My husband fumes and lectures me on what I “NEED” to do to stop the lateness madness; which only serves to make my guilt intensify. I feel like I must be self-sabotaging, but I can’t figure out how I’m doing that or why.
    Any suggestions from dear author or fellow readers?

  4. Thanks for sharing. I see the novelty of your writing, I will share it for everyone to read together. I look forward to reading many articles from you.

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