Use your implicit memory to start embracing a happier, healthier you.
Harnessing Your Implicit Memory to Cultivate Better Behaviors and Habits
Understanding the Differences Between Implicit and Explicit Memory
You can cultivate positive changes in your life with implicit memory. To understand it better, let’s compare explicit and implicit memory.
Implicit memory is referred to as non-declarative or unconscious memory. It’s a type of long-term memory that doesn’t require conscious thought.
It’s effortless and allows you to do a specific task. It can be tying your shoelaces or riding a bike without even thinking.
In contrast, you have to consciously think about the information stored in your explicit memory or declarative memory such as a doctor’s appointment or phone number.
The implicit memory acts unconsciously. It can make your current habits, behaviors, and lifestyle difficult to change.
However, by understanding how implicit memory works, you can rewire it to live a more positive, happier life.
Here are three benefits to rewiring your implicit memory:
- Be more productive.
- Eliminate negative thoughts and encourage positive thinking
- Cope better with stress
We will go more into detail about these benefits in a bit.
What Is Your Implicit Memory?
To fully understand how changing your implicit memory and rewiring your thoughts can benefit your life, it helps to have a greater grasp of what exactly implicit memory is.
Your implicit memory is comprised of unconscious emotional patterns relating to yourself and to others. These patterns have been formed through repetition and include the associations you make between behaviors, thoughts, emotions, and experiences.
Do you feel good about yourself, or do you give yourself a hard time with negative thoughts? What do you think when you look in the mirror or when you’re about to take an exam?
Implicit memory guides behavior automatically without requiring any thought or effort from you. This type of memory starts developing early on, forming the basis of your character.
Procedural memory is the type of implicit memory that allows you to carry out actions unconsciously. It stores instructions for your automatic responses.
This is important as procedural memory is what makes you unique like your behavioral or emotional response to certain situations or stimuli.
When you automatically respond with negative thoughts or emotions, it's your procedural memory kicking in on autopilot.
By bringing awareness to these types of thoughts and behaviors, you can set new instructions and rewire your implicit memory to bring about a more positive way of thinking.
How to Change Your Implicit Memory
Your procedural memory is persistent and resistant to change. It has taken repetition and learning over time to establish the memory in the first place.
Naturally, it requires time to change. The good news is new, correct, and positive pathways can eventually override old procedures.
Once a procedure has been initiated, it can feel difficult and uncomfortable to stop. This is why you may repeat ineffective and self-defeating thoughts and behaviors.
Although it’s not a quick fix, by using certain techniques, you can help rewire your implicit memory over time. Then, you can achieve what you want in life without the block you might currently feel.
This means you get more neurons stuck together in the same place, which is a good thing. It helps improve cognitive processing and memory processes.
It is also helpful for older adults who are prone to memory decline and impairment. These can include conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, which results in memory, motor skills, and cognitive loss.
Another crucial part of rewiring your implicit memory comes from the importance of self-awareness and self-actualization. Your implicit memory is influenced by your self-perception.
Self-actualization means you are living life to your fullest potential. A good life is a process, a journey. Just because you’re not fully actualized yet doesn’t mean you can’t hope to be that version of yourself later in life.
Priming is a technique in psychology in which you learn pattern recognition through the association of words, contexts, or stimuli. The purpose is to make your response to a cue faster or more efficient.
There are different methods of priming. These include:
- Perceptual priming, wherein you respond to cues similar in form. In linguistics, it can be “goat” and “moat.”
- Conceptual priming, wherein you respond faster to stimuli belonging to the same category. In linguistic terms, that can be “books” and magazines.”
- Semantic priming, wherein you respond to logical cues. Take, for example, “red” and “heart.”
Priming is an excellent method for passing memory tests or psychology learning. You may also rely on it to form positive habits.
You can use its principle to prime your mind to respond to healthy goals, such as eating right, consuming supplements like Ormus Super Greens, or exercising. It may be effective as the brain is sensitive to cues or triggers.
What Are the Benefits of Rewiring Your Implicit Memory?
When you learn to modify your implicit memory, you can take advantage of the following benefits:
1. Be More Productive
Developing and building positive habits can help you be more productive. Practicing mindfulness or meditation can boost productivity by maintaining a conscious awareness of your thoughts.
It’s been shown that mindfulness can help with decision making, focus, resilience, and prioritizing. All of these contribute toward better productivity and feelings of accomplishment.
2. Eliminate Negative Thoughts and Encourage Positive Thinking
Whether it’s obsessing over a faux pas at a party or beating yourself up about something that happened, it’s easy for negative thoughts to enter the mind.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Negative thoughts contribute to stress, a major risk factor for chronic diseases.
By changing the way you think and by focusing on positive thinking and experiences, you can help to eliminate negative thoughts from your mind. Try to do this by implementing affirmations into your morning routine.
3. Cope Better with Stress
Stress is a normal part of everyday life. However, chronic stress can increase the risk of developing numerous health conditions:
- heart disease
- high blood pressure
- heart attack
When areas of the brain compare a present experience to implicit memories of a past experience, it signals a certain response in your body.
If you’ve coped well with past experiences and are accessing more positive explicit memories, then you should cope better with stress in response to a situation.
Rebuild your memory and focus with food and exercise in this video from Sunwarrior:
If this isn’t the case for you, you still have the opportunity to re-learn connections and associations in your implicit memory. This can then help you to cope better with stress, be more productive, encourage positive thinking, and live a happier life overall.
How do you change your mindset to something positive? Share your tips in the comments section below.