Ars Memoria – Part 4 Creating Your Journey


Creating Your Journey

In Part 3 I covered some of the basics of what is called the Journey Method.  After re-reading it today I’ve decided to go into a bit more detail of how to create your journey.  After this, I will cover the basics of its usage and the timeline for memory review.

Perhaps after Part 3 you sat down and created a detailed journey through your home or work.  For the more ambitious amongst you, perhaps you created a journey going from home-route to work-work and back again.  If you were more ambitious, then your fuller journey should have at least 100 distinct place markers to work with.  If you haven’t done the fuller route of home-routetowork-work, go and do so now.  In Part 5 we will cover the Dominic System and will use your 100 loci together with the numbers 00-99 to create an even more powerful memory system.  But what if your home-route-work journey doesn’t have 100 distinct places?  What do you do then?  Remember how I mentioned the knowledge?  Well for this post we will take list 1 and create a journey based on it.

List 1, Run 1, Manor House Station (N4) to Gibson Square (N1)

  1. L on L Green Lanes
  2. R Brownswood Rd
  3. L Blackstock Rd
  4. F Highbury Park
  5. F Highbury Grove
  6. R St. Paul’s Rd
  7. Comp Highbury Corner
  8. Lv By Upper Street
  9. R Islington Park Street
  10. L College Cross
  11. R Barnsbury St
  12. L Milner Sq
  13. L Milner Pl
  14. Finish facing Gibson Sqaure

Head over to Google Maps and enter as your starting point Manor House Station N4 London, England and enter your end point as Gibson Square N1 London, England.  You will need to adjust the route to make it match the list above.  (For those that want the shortcut for the points data:  SHORTCUT.)  On points 12 & 13 you will notice on the map after the Right on Barnsbury St. that you take a Left onto Milner Place and then a Left on Milner Square.  Make sure to drop the marker for Manor House Station near the station itself.  Switch to satellite view and turn on the Labels. Get a broad overview of the different buildings along your transit route.  Look at the Manor House Station & Gibson Square Points at each location.  There are 14 such Points listed in the PDF.  Zoom in so you can see Kent Hall when you are centered over Manor House Station.  Now travel the route and pay attention to hotels, doctor offices, the West Reservoir, churches, bus stops, eateries, supermarkets, schools, etc. surrounding the main streets of this run.  Create a list from the 14 points provided in the PDF and after finding those, add in the inbetween points such as bus stops, churches, etc.  For this run you should have well over 100 points.  For every fifth point add something that makes it stick out.  Perhaps a wreathes of different colors or add in every 5th wedding anniversary present.  This is done so that you don’t have to start at the beginning of your journey.  Adding these wreaths or every 5th anniversary present will allow you to pick any fifth spot on your journey and from there move forward or backward along the path so that you can recall what was 19th on the list by starting at 20 and not 1. Remember the point locations by street name and which side of the road they are own as you travel the road.  For instance, the West Reservoir will be on the left hand side as you travel down Green Lanes.

Screenshot_2_19_13_1_16_PM(Click on the image to see the 3D button)

You will also see a 3D option next to the list of directions.  Switch to 3D and then hit pause on the satellite screen and let Google maps populate the buildings.  If that takes too long then switch to Street View.  Then begin your journey down Green Lanes ending in Gibson Square.  Move along the streets as if you were walking.  Pay attention to the little shops that weren’t mentioned in your overview.  What other side roads did you notice?  Name them and mark their location so you know where they intersect the run streets.  By the time you finish this exercise you should have almost 200 points along this first run.  You will need to do this exercise everyday for the next week.  It is preferable if you can do it twice a day “walking” to each point on your list.  You will be finished with the exercise when you can walk down the streets in your mind’s eye calling out points from your list as you move past them.  Yes this is intensive and will take time.  But the rewards are worth it.

So how do you use this or the journey you created of your home-route-work?  Let’s take the list from Part 2 again.

  1. key
  2. stadium
  3. autograph
  4. cross
  5. bald
  6. cup
  7. figure
  8. number
  9. school
  10. knife

Instead of creating a story that links these items you link them by placing them in your journey.  Suppose we use the first run.  We take the key to Manor House Station since we need it to get into our cab.  Did you notice Finsbury Park to the left of the Manor House Station?  There’s our stadium.  We drive by Manor House Drycleaners where we have to provide an autograph to get our clothes back.  We notice that they only use Cross pens at the drycleaners.  We notice a bald man drinking a cup of tea coming out of the late night shop.  As we drive by West Reservoir we notice a woman skating a figure eight on the lake.  As we drive by the bus stop we notice some school kids sitting on the bus bench sharpening their knives.  In this way the list is locked in place based on the locations we pass.  To remember the list we only have to start back at the Manor House Station.

I mentioned above and in Part 3 that I would provide you with a timeline to facilitate memorization.  The following is the timeline that you will follow when learning something new.  I recommend you get a program like iProcrastinate to set the time schedule for memorization reviews that are more than 1 day away.

  • Take a 5 minute break every 30 minutes
  • Review the material 1 hour after you have finished
  • Review the material 1 day later
  • Review the material 3 days later
  • Review the material 1 week later
  • Review the material 1 month later
  • Review the material 3 to 6 months later

It may seem hard to follow at first, but if you make the effort you will never forget anything again.

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