They say that success is who you know, and what you know. Specifically what you actually do with the knowledge you have. However, remembering what you need to know is difficult, but with proper training, you can remember virtually anything.
Majority of people will go through a book and mark it in every place where it doesn’t count. The bolded words, the memorable quotes, the formulas to describe something. Instead what you should be doing is quiz yourself. Having the ability to test yourself is a shortcut to the learning process.
Imagine if you tested yourself and you got the question wrong. You’re not only remembering the question and the wrong answer, but you are also creating space for the correct answer.
Don’t memorize, don’t reread. Get into the habit of quizzing yourself instead. This will help you gain confidence in how much you know and it’ll help you learn things faster.
Summarize And Share
Those who teach learn faster and retain more than those who don’t. When you are able to teach another person a concept, you are bringing the concept to life based on how you interpret it. Find someone who you can summarize what you learned with, and ask them to explain what they got out of it. If it matches with your understanding, then you’ve done your job.
By using the power of association, you can make a concept stick by associating it with something you already have experienced or know. This is a powerful concept that Joshua Foer of Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything goes over in his book. Instead, the concept of a memory palace is used which you can associate objects within a route or room you know really well, with the things you need to remember. The goofier the associations, the more memorable it can be.
If you want to learn something new, try associating something you already know with it. This way you can have a previous understanding of what it is, and you’ll work less to bridge the gap between what you know and the unknown.