To forget is human. But the great news is that your phone and computer are great at supporting you remember stuff. None of us are getting any more youthful, mostly because time moves only ahead. It’s annoying that way. And, as such, what was once tack-sharp memory gradually but surely dulls as the year’s march onward. Thankfully, we’ve got technology on our side and with great apps you can sharp your memory. A nearly continuous parade of instruments can not only help us remember things but even get our brains working a bit more efficiently in prevailing. Here are amazing free apps to help you ramp up your recall.
1. PUT REMINDERS AT THE READY
Sometimes the best apps are the ones you previously have. Both Android and Apple devices emphasize quick ways to set prompts for yourself, whether that means leveraging Siri, Google Assistant, or some other AI-powered helper. And while time-based suggestions work well for most, try leveraging location-based suggestions to make your to-do list work better in the real world.
If you’re engaged into Google, it’s as simple as typing “Remind me to get dog food the next time I’m at Whole Foods” into the Google search bar, whereas iPhone owners can use Apple’s built-in Reminders app to set location-based listings by tapping the Info symbol to the right of your reminder (see the “Set a place” entry in this Apple help portion for more).
2. TRAIN YOUR BRAIN
Now if you’re really watching to enhance your memory, there’s no shortage of brain-training apps on the market. But Peak (Android, Apple) wins tips for being equal parts beautiful, feature-rich, and insightful—with dozens of games intended to enhance your recall and mental agility. The free version offers a decent choice to get you started, while the paid version ($5 a month or $35 a year) offers a more personalized knowledge and access to the entire collection of challenges.
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3. PUT FACES WITH THOSE NAMES
If you’re like me, you have a phone half-full of connections that you couldn’t recognize in real life if your real life depended on it. Get your contacts under power by trying Covve (Android, Apple, Web). It looks for news articles about your contacts, tells you to keep in touch with them, and makes you take notes about meetings you’ve had with them.
But it also draws in profile photos of them, which is extremely helpful for jogging your memory when it comes to those “Who the hell is this person?” importance as you’re flipping through your virtual Rolodex. The free version is refreshingly powerful, while the paid version ($15 a month or $90 a year) scans more intensely and continuously for changes, among other pieces.
4. JOT IT DOWN THE OLD-FASHIONED WAY
There’s just something about really writing things down in your own chicken-scratch to help you get them better. And wouldn’t you know it: your phones about the width of a regular sticky note. Ergo, you should utilize your phone to hand-write notes to yourself from time to time. Two easy, straightforward claims are Squid (Android) and Pocket Jot (Apple)—apps that get directly to the point when you fire them up, giving you a blank canvas upon which to memorialize your thoughts. Both are free for basic note-taking; the paid account of Squid ($1 a month or $10 a year) gets you the capability to mark-up PDFs and a few other features, while the paid version of Pocket Jot ($6 one time) lets you save countless notes.
5. GET REMINDED TO NOT FORGET
If you use Google’s Chrome browser and find yourself requiring to retain different bits of news from around the web, then be sure to give the free Hibou (Chrome Web Store) extension a try. Hibou leverages the idea of “spaced repetition” to re-surface content you highlight right when you’re most prone to forget it—at first, within a few days, then separating the reminders further and further apart from when you originally highlight and save the content. The periods are customizable, allowing you to tweak your study times to best suit your retention style.
BONUS TIP: DON’T FORGET YOUR PHONE!
Just a PSA that your apps are no choice if you can’t find your phone> Both Android (Find My Device) and Apple (Find My iPhone) have honest phone-finding services that let you hunt down your wandering handset by location and distinct tone, and even letting you lock it or wipe its data if it comes into the wrong hands.