Keeping The Important Memories Alive
The human mind is astonishing, and the way we make memories is a fascinating process. However, recalling long-lost memories can be hard, and without things to “jog your memory”, as the saying goes, you may not be able to fully recapture them. Sometimes a smell or a song will bring you back in time; in other instances, a picture or a painting might do the trick.
There are important moments in life that define us when we live through them, but which will be quickly forgotten if we don’t do something to memorialize those moments. This is especially true with families. There’s a good reason your mother kept baby booties and elementary school pictures so long. These do a fine job of helping you recall.
Certain activities and stimuli will “activate” your memories, and if you keep those things around you, then you’ll have a more clear recollection of those important times in your life. In this writing, we’ll briefly explore several ways you can help preserve your memories through the many ups and downs of life.
1. Establishing Recurring Traditions When The Occasion Calls
What is an anniversary or a birthday but a recurring tradition designed for the commemoration of an important moment in a person’s life? Similarly, you might establish “family holidays”. When you finally move into that new house you’ve been dreaming of for years, mark that day on the calendar and go out to eat every year in remembrance, or something similar.
There are all kinds of ways to do this; you may not even necessarily establish a specific day—instead, you might establish a pastime habit of some kind. It all depends on your situation.
2. Shared Snail-Mail Journals Passed Between Families
Have you ever heard of a chain letter? These were obnoxious things from the era before the internet.
Some farcical story of loss and gain would be sent in the mail with a curse—send this on, or the curses others experienced will come to you! If you send it along, you’ll get blessings! Chain letters were superstitious, but there are other ways to capitalize on the same energy without the ill-considered blessing and cursing.
For example, you might pass a journal between family members that is updated with important events. Maybe mom and dad start it at the beginning of the year, then they send it to their adult children, who send it to cousins or other relatives—the book must simply be returned by the year’s end. This is just an example of a possible strategy, but it could work!
3. Having A Picture Made Into A Painted Portrait
One of the most popular memorialization methods is having an Instapainting portrait painting put together. You choose a favorite individual or family photo, send it off to the agency, and they make a painting from it you can feature in your sitting room, or family room. This is stylish, and such pictures will recall all sorts of fond memories.
4. Keeping An Extensive Photo Album
These days you can overcome much of the difficulty associated with building a photo album through solutions like this buying guide from Digital Camera World. Where before, you’d have to manage physical photos within the laminated sleeves of a large three-ring binder, today you can simply categorize your photos and have them printed in a volume like a yearbook.
Certainly, such options have been around for many decades, but before they’d be much more expensive and inconvenient to produce. Today, the pendulum has swung the other way. Now it’s easier to keep digital photos than to physically capture them and organize them. However, the old way may be best for you as well—some people prefer to be more hands-on.
Nourishing Your Best Memories
Recurring traditions, shared journals, painted portraits, commemorative architecture, and photo albums all have their place in the memorialization of important life events. Some of these may work better for you than others, or you might want to incorporate each of these strategies in different circumstances.
Regardless, be intentional about things like keepsakes. The mind is an amazing thing, but it’s too easy to forget; especially given the turbulent nature of life. Important times deserve to be commemorated. Find which ways best fit you and your family.