Nice To Meet You – What Was Your Name Again? How frustrating is it, when you greet someone by name on a regular basis and they only say “Hello” back? Or vice versa? You cannot remember their name, so you just say “Hello, how are you?” It feels like something is missing.
Calling someone by name usually brightens their day. Some people don’t find names important (they should!) or they are just not good at name memorization (they often tell me!) Well, you can learn how to memorize names.
I’ve developed a few tricks over the years at remembering names. My need for frequent name memorization stems from a peripheral social circle where I might meet someone and not see them again for a couple of weeks. The contact is brief.
Maybe you have the same type of situation at an infrequent business mixer, with some neighbors you rarely see, or at the gym? After running into someone a few times, there could be a casual interaction, then a more formal “I’m Suzie”, which opens up the “I’m Jack” introduction and a handshake. Then you may not see this person again for quite a while. That makes it harder to remember their name. Or so it seems.
So, how can you memorize names? There are three key methods that you can implement to improve your name recall.
Visual – Use a physical attribute to connect with the name.
Auditory – Make a play on words, use song or rhyme, or another relational tie to the name.
Kinesthetic – Write it down. I make a note with the name on my phone (not in front of them!)
All these aspects of memorization help reinforce the names in my brain. The more imaginitive your association, the better!
Here are some examples:
Abbie – I think “Abbey Road!” (the Beatles). She has red hair, so I have an Irish-English thing in my head.
Sean – Sean works with Abbie, so I connect them as “Irish” – two Irish names, Sean and Abbie! I even repeat it in my mind with an Irish twang.
Dave – Dave is big and tall. “David and Goliath” was my initial trick.
Kenny – my brother’s name is Ken. I mentioned this to Kenny when I first learned his name, and he then told me his niece’s name is Wendy. So that connection embedded pretty fast.
Beth – Beth the beautiful. Enough said.
Sandy – Her daughter, whom I already knew, is “Mandy”! The rhyme sticks (“Mandy – Sandy”)
Kim – looks like Kim Novak, the actress.
Anne – tall with broad shoulders, so Anne – Amazon!
A Couple? – I may use a stronger mental play for one of the names, but then I always say them together in my mind “Sylvia (pictured with her hair over one eye) and Byron”. (Plus the “y” in both names)
Tougher names? I have a new acquaintance named “Avonis”. I had to ask for his name multiple times to hear it right. It rhymes with “Upon Us”. That’s a musical connection.
Writing down the names is important, so you can review them if necessary. That ties in another visual piece to a kinesthetic element.
Finally, I repeat the name in my mind the evening after the meeting, along with whatever mental trick I originally devised. If there were several names, I repeat them all. Doing this, I actually remember people’s names from years ago, people I don’t see any more.
So, the next time someone says “Hello” to you, give them a smile by calling them by name!
It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!
Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Email Wendy: [email protected]
Wendy Rulnick, Broker, lists and sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Crestview, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Okaloosa Island, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Freeport, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.