is a memory expert and Speaker of the Year 2017, and with the help of his memory and thinking techniques, he successfully increases people’s memory performance in a short period of time. In his shows and seminars he helps the audience to acquire and successfully apply helpful memory techniques in an informative and uniquely entertaining and humorous way. We met Markus Hofmann and talked to him about his experiences as a full-time memory trainer and speaker.
When and why did you first get interested in memory training?
I first got to know the memory techniques during my university studies. Besides my job I had little time to study in the evening and on weekends. With the help of memory techniques, I was able to increase my grade average drastically from high school to university – requiring only half the time for study! Suddenly I was among the top 10% in my course only because I was using a couple of techniques. Over time, I improved the learning methods and developed techniques that allowed my fellow students to acquire a wealth of information with greatly reduced learning effort.
And what were the reasons you then decided to turn memory training into a career?
After I had taught my fellow students the memory techniques, one of them came up to me and asked me if I would like to present them at his company. His colleagues had problems remembering names and faces and he thought they could benefit from memory techniques. When I introduced the memory techniques there, I realized that it was a lot of fun to help other people develop a better memory. I then quit my job at the bank and focused on memory training. From this point on, one thing led to another: I started giving presentations and was involved in “Wetten dass…?” with the Scots bet. I then wrote three books, won the DWP (German Prize for Continuing Education) and was voted Speaker of the Year.
I’m sure almost anyone can make use of memory techniques but it takes a lot more to present them to others in an informative and entertaining way. What are your secrets for engaging and captivating an audience?
My goal is that after my presentation the participants are enthusiastic about themselves, because they experience at first hand that they can use the techniques. I present the content in an interactive and humorous way, so that people don’t even notice that they are learning. My motto is: “Humor is the vehicle for conveying knowledge.” Those who laugh and have fun, dive into a Study Bubble and don’t even notice that they are learning in this very moment.
As our readers are interested in travel – what would be your advice for not forgetting anything when packing for a trip?
Here it is important to have a certain routine. If I go through a certain routine before packing my suitcase, the probability of remembering everything is quite high. If I want to remember a list of items that I have to pack, I need a so-called mental mailbox for the information I want to remember. We find our mail because it’s in the mailbox. If the mailman put it somewhere else each time we wouldn’t be able to find it. Our memory works in exactly the same way: we need a place where we can store information to ensure that we can find it again. We can now build our own mental mailboxes. For example, you could divide your body into 10 mental mailboxes: Number one is your toes, number two is your knees, number three is your thighs and so on. If we want to remember any item on our packing list, we have to link it mentally to our mailbox in a creative, funny, grotesque, erotic or painful way. Why don’t you just name a couple of items that frequent flyers often have with them.
Okay, let’s say we want to remember to pack our tablet, toothpaste, a notepad, shampoo and a comb .
Okay. Now we start by linking the tablet in an extraordinary way to our first mental mailbox – our toes. We imagine stepping on the tablet with our toes, stomping on it. The screen breaks, maybe we even cut ourselves on the glass. And because the image in our head is so painful, we cannot NOT see the tablet from now on when we look at our toes. And we continue the very same way linking all the items on our list to the mental mailboxes of our body – the toothpaste to the knees, the notepad to the thighs and so on.
I’m sure many of our readers will try this the next time they’re packing for a trip– I will! You’re traveling a lot yourself. How do you spend your time on a plane?
My motto when flying is “Double your time” – use waiting times meaningfully and expand your own horizons. Listening to audiobooks is a fantastic option for me.
Last but not least – what’s the one thing you can’t travel without?
That would actually be my smartphone. I work with it a lot as I can do pretty much everything with it nowadays. I answer e-mails, make phone calls and use it to listen to audiobooks.
Thank you so much for talking to us today and for sharing some fantastic insights with us in this truly unforgettable interview!
But dear readers, don’t leave just yet – we are happy to be able to offer you the audiobook „Advantage by knowledge” by Markus Hofmann (value of 24,97 EUR) as a free download! If you would like to use the time during your next flight for training your mind be sure to get your exclusive free ChackPacker copy in English or German!