Today Was That Day

26 Oct
I bumped into a blog of a friend. And well, I actually knew of the infatuated state of her heart which she kept on denying before. *insert evil smile here*. She allowed me to quote her here, so the following is an excerpt:

People all over the world remember when something very memorable happens to them and so remember that day the following years of their lives. Such experience may be very amusing or not really amusing but the best or worst part is you always get to remember that day. It’s funny how we tend to be very forgetful of what happened yesterday or the other day but clearly remembers what happened exactly last year (I’m referring to the experiences that are memorable.). Well, that must be part of life’s irony. YES! And of course that is one proof of how amazingly our brain works. And another proof of the truth that memory truly haunts us.

Whatever is the reason or the science behind remembering and celebrating anniversaries, one thing for sure, is it can be really sweet for persons in love, annoying for friends with funny experiences, bitter for broken hearts, and a normal day to people with memory gap or Alzheimer’s.

True enough that anniversaries are remembered because they are just too memorable to forget. But just how exactly our memory works? Why can’t we control our mind to remember the good things and completely forget the embarrassing days?

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Memory is the process of remembering. There are basically three steps on how our memory works. First is the process called encoding. This process starts with perception when an experience catches your attention. And when  an experience is memorable, especially when it draws your emotion, neurons fire more frequently, making the experience more intense and increasing the likelihood that the event is encoded as a memory.

The second process is storing. Here, the perception is converted to a form with which the system can cope with. It can either be stored in one’s short-term memory (one’s that last for 0-30 seconds) or long-term memory (those that can last for a lifetime).

The last is retrieval. It simply refers to getting information that you previously stored. Here, there is a clear difference on how STM and LTM retrieves memory. STM is stored and retrieved sequentially while LTM is stored and retrieved by association.

So it is then not a mystery why we can say “Today was that day” for it is part of how amazingly our mind works.

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References:

http://letusgotumbling.tumblr.com/post/22116788793/today-was-that-day#notes

http://www.human-memory.net/processes_encoding.html

http://www.simplypsychology.org/memory.html

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