MEMORY: #6 – Mapping a route by memory

“Mapping a route from memory” is an extremely challenging task to perform. But using this strategy is a tremendous exercise for the mind, for the brain and for the memory.

Want to really challenge yourself, try doing this mapping task. Many people lament they have no sense of direction. All the more reason to try this task. Can’t remember the route fully? Again, more reason for trying the task.

To do ‘route mapping’ from memory demands use of recall, of review, of mental imaging and of mental organization. It is a task that challenges any age group, and memory.

Here is what you one has to do. Your problem is to ‘map out’ a route for a person to take to get to a destination, lay out all the streets, the highways, the paths the person must use to get to a particular destination. If it is to get to another city, you will need to identify the highway numbers and highways to use, provide identifying landmarks along the route to reinforce that the person is on the route. You will need to recall the proper highway numbers, the visual landmarks that help a person to recognize they are on the correct route.

The task can take progressive steps in difficulty. First, give a person a ‘map’ to finding a particular house, or particular visual somewhere in the nearby neighbourhood. Map out the streets to be used, the landmark buildings along the route and what the final destination looks like.

Next, take it a level higher, map out a car route to a destination across the city or downtown. This is a more challenging task as the person will be moving at automobile speed, seeing your landmarks at a pace which requires a more demanding attention and recognition pace.

If your ‘map user’ succeeds in reaching the destination based on your map of directions which you did from memory, you should feel very good about yourself. You have laid out a route from memory which works for any user. Bravo.

This whole strategy is somewhat akin to “mind mapping” except that it is done using memory, using recall, using review. This is a very challenging task but tremendously gratifying if you are successful in mapping a map that the user can use with effectiveness and correctly.

If they used your directions and got to the destination successfully, you have just completed a very difficult mental task which demands the use of all aspects of mental agility, memory, logic, problem solving and analysis.  [ If you lack the confidence to send someone out on your map, sketch out the map for yourself, and then do it on your own to see if it works for you. If it does, your brain/memory are doing great. If it fails, try it again and again, each time try something simpler and then move up a notch in difficulty as you have more successes. ]

A great task with great reward.

 

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