Why is it so easy to remember things we don’t want to remember.

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I don’t mean this in a trauma sense, but why is it if we see a TV spoiler for example its almost impossible to forget, but trying to remember something intentionally is often harder.

In: Biology

4 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

Actually, it’s pretty easy to remember something intentionally, too. It’s just that when we want to remember something, we need to remember it at the exact right time, and in detail.

If you find out who the killer is in a whodunnit mystery, before you have the chance to read it yourself, then the knowledge is there, and that’s a bother. But you probably won’t keep it in mind *all* the time, *all* through the day.

The same thing goes for things we need to, and want to, remember. We’ll remember that we need to swing by the grocery store on the way home and buy asparagus, but we might forget about that errand *as* we’re on the way home. We’ll think about it before it’s time, and when we’re home we’ll remember that we should have done it, but at the *specific time* when we need to keep it in mind, it might slip our minds.

We might remember most of a phone number, but we’ll often forget a digit or two, and that makes all the difference.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Negative memories are important as in general they keep you alive, the brain records “mistakes” either social or physical as important life lessons of what not to repeat in the future.

Anonymous 0 Comments

I’m assuming it’s because there’s something there to trigger the memory. So you see a spoiler, then once you start watching the show, it triggers that memory. It would be like trying to remember to pick up milk on your way home from work so you tie a string to your finger. If you didn’t have the string, you might forget, but as soon as you see the string, it triggers your memory.

Anonymous 0 Comments

I would love to know this. I remember random things, like what someone was wearing and where they were seated in a meeting last week, but I can’t remember what someone said. It’s really random what I do/don’t remember. (Diagnosed ADHD, unmedicated, Peri menopausal… All which could play a role).