I forget many, many things. I have lost two cell phones and an iPod this year, for example, and I am just terrible at remembering names. New research by two Stanford psychologists -- Anthony Wagner and Brice Kuhl Pictured to the left)-- makes me feel better (go here for the complete story). To quote the press release:
For the first time, Stanford researchers using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have discovered that the brain's ability to suppress irrelevant memories makes it easier for humans to remember what's really important.
"It's somewhat of a counter-intuitive idea," said Brice Kuhl, a doctoral student working in the lab of Associate Professor Anthony Wagner of the Psychology Department. "Remembering something actually has a cost for memories that are related but irrelevant." But this cost is beneficial: The brain's ability to weaken unimportant memories and experiences enables it to function more efficiently in the future, Kuhl said.
Does this mean that companies should start screening people out who have bad memories? Sounds like too weird an idea even for me!