How To Use The Number System To Improve Your Memory

number system memory

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10. One of the very first things we learn how to do is to count. We live in a world of numbers.  There are phone numbers, birthdays, ages, house numbers, street numbers, license numbers, area codes, and the list goes on an on.

IWhen you think about it, if there was not a special technique to remember numbers, it would be very difficult to recall them because most of the time they are very difficult to relate. Your brain processes information in a visual level, not with digits.

It is easier for you to image a monkey eating jelly than to picture the third digit of the longest number you know. What if you could mentally transform numbers into phrases or words that symbolizes a mental image? You can.

You can assign each number from 0 to 9 for a consonant letter. Then, when you want to remember number digits, you can convert these digits into letters, insert appropriate vowels and transform it into words. These words can then help you to form a relation much more easily than trying to remember the digits.

For example, when we want to recall that the Bible’s Book is composed of 39 books, and what if 3 and 9 is transformed into M and P. We could then insert a vowel such as A between the consonant to create the word MAP. We could then create an image of a big map in our mind such as Israel, Jordan or Egypt etc or any nice MAP of the Old Testament. After some time, when we need to recall the number books in the Old Testament, we can remember the old places found in the books. MAP. Scrape the vowel A, and then translate the vowels into the digits which is 3 and 9 or 39. Now we had recalled it successfully. This kind of method works because of image associations.

But how can you know that M is represented by 3 and P by 9? It will be easier if you would just remember the following table of consonants and numbers. Once you encoded this data in your mind, it will be beneficial for you forever.

Number System

Digit Vowel Mnemonic

  • 0 Z Zero starts with Z
  • 1 T,D T has a single down stroke
  • 2 N N has two down strokes
  • 3 M M has three down strokes
  • 4 R “four” ends in letter R
  • 5 L Roman Numeral for 50 is L
  • 6 J,SH,CH Turned J looks 6
  • 7 K,G (harsh) View K as combined 7
  • 8 F,V Cursive small F has two loops that looks like 8
  • 9 P,B Reversed P is similar to 9

This system is the most common method used by experts in using mnemonics. This method has been maximized so that it will be easier to learn and use. It is interesting to note that the paired letters have been placed in a group because they are similar phonetically such as p and b or t and d.

Here are some proven guidelines if you want to use this system:

  1. This system is generally phonetic. As an example, the term cough should be visualized as KoF and translate into 7 and 8 or 78. If you want to translate GEM, it should be JEM, for 6 and 3.
  2. Doubled letters are not accounted. As an example, Batter translates into B, T, and R. the extra T is not counted.
  3. When you want to create word from consonants, clear nouns usually work effectively, rather than passive verbs.

Whether you are a ‘numbers person’ or not, you must deal with numbers in your life. Why not let those numbers help you improve your memory and keep your brain sharp as you age?


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