PAYING ATTENTION IS THE KEY TO PRESERVING MEMORY
Dr. Richard Restak
with Jane Rogers
Converting language to visual pictures can help us to remember things
If you only have 3 minutes...
Dr. Richard Restak concurs with the 18th century British writer, Samuel Johnson, who once said, “The true art of memory is the art of attention.”
A neurologist and neuropsychologist and expert on the human brain, Dr. Restak believes that all methods of nourishing and protecting one’s memory entail the ability to focus attention. His favorite technique is turning words into visual images to establish what he calls a “memory path.”
“Seeing something and converting the word or a sense into a picture, into a mental drawing, is the key to setting up memory,” he explains.
Dr. Restak also advocates other paths for protecting one’s memory – cooking (which can require organization and memorization of recipes), the use of technology (to support memory, not replace it), getting adequate sleep, playing games, avoiding fast food and trending toward vegetarianism, and exercising.
About Dr. Richard Restak
Dr. Richard Restak is a noted neurologist and neuropsychiatrist who has written extensively on the subject of the human brain.
He is the author of 20 books, all on aspects of the brain, two of which were New York Times Best Sellers – The Brain (1984) and The Mind (1988). Both those books were turned into television series by the Public Broadcasting System.
His most recent book, The Complete Guide to Memory: The Science of Strengthening Your Mind, published in 2021, is a cornucopia of information on memory and offers numerous suggestions for how individuals can enhance their memory and protect it from deteriorating.
Dr. Restak earned degrees from Gettysburg College and Georgetown University School of Medicine. He completed his internship at St. Vincent’s Hospital in New York City and residencies at Georgetown University Hospital and George Washington University Hospital. Now 80, he still has a private practice in neurology and neuropsychology and is a clinical professor of neurology at George Washington Hospital University School of Medicine and Health.
Often appearing as a guest on television and radio shows, Dr. Restak has written articles for numerous newspapers and contributed entries on neuroscience and the brain to the Encyclopedia Brittanica and the Encyclopedia of Neuroscience.