How to remember the name of everyone you meet?

Remember the name
Photo by Alexis Brown

A few months ago, I was in a supermarket and suddenly someone put his arm on my shoulder. I turned back and saw this man whom I met a couple of weeks ago in a seminar.

He then said, how are you, Saurabh?

I am fine, thank you, I said. But, I could not recall his name. It broke my heart (I am sorry, my friend).

Did that ever happen to you?

I did not have any idea that how much this simple thing can cost us throughout our life. It costs people business, money, and sometimes a true love. The name is one of the sweetest sound ones hears in a day.

 “People may forget what you said to them, but they will always remember how you made them feel.” – Carl W. Buehner

It is important for you and me to remember people’s names because it is the network which really helps us to succeed in the 21st century.

Since then, I have studied various techniques to enhance my memory. I can immediately see the importance of remembering people’s name.

I would like to share one specific technique to remember people’s name. This technique is from the world famous speed learning and memory expert Jim Kwik.

You can learn about Jim and his teachings at his website

The 5 steps process to remember people’s name.

We remember what we connect with and what we repeat. This technique uses the same logic.

These steps are called SUAVE. It stands for Say the name, Use the name, Ask about the name, Visualize the name, and End with the name.

Say the name.

The first step is to say the name immediately after you hear it. For example, you can say that it is nice to meet you, Saurabh (Person Name). It is important that you say it correctly and with excitement.

If you are unsure about the pronunciation, do not hesitate to ask it again. You can ask am I saying it right, Saurabh.

It shows that you value his or her name and you are making an effort to say it right. It automatically builds a connection and respect between two of you.

Use the name.

In the second step, you will try to use the name of this person whenever appropriate. Remember what I said about repetition. It is one of the keys to a better memory.

Please be mindful that you do not overdo it otherwise it can be uncomfortable for the other person.

For example, you can use sentences such as I get it, Saurabh or I appreciate it, Saurabh.  

Ask about the name.

Asking about the name can be a great way for you to learn about new names. You can ask about its meaning or where it is from.

By asking a question about the name, you will create a memory with this name which will enforce your memory. You can use this step to repeat the name again and again which will build a stronger memory of it.

Visualize the name.

This step is a very powerful tool to remember anything, not just the name. Our mind works based on pictures. If you remember anything right now, you will notice you can see the picture of it in your mind.

The same principle can be used to enhance our memories with the words. When you hear the person’s name, try to visualize it at a picture of your interests.

For example, if the person name is Christophe, I would imagine a picture of Christ eating a toffee. I know it is childish, but do not forget that the fastest learner on this planet are children.

Try to be creative about it and believe me, within no time, you will be able to do it for each instance in your life.

End with the name.

The last step is about ending the conversation. It is simple, but an important step in this process.

When you say goodbye to the person you met, always say goodbye with his or her name at the end of it. For example, say goodbye, Saurabh or see you later, Saurabh or have a nice day, Saurabh.

If you follow these five steps, according to Jim, you could easily remember the name of 100 peoples in a meeting room.

I have tried it with 15 peoples and I could remember all 15 names while leaving the meeting room.  Guess what? They all remember me now because people never forget how you make them feel.

Take care of body and mind
Photo by Leon Biss

In addition to the above process, Jim suggests that we should take care of body and mind to improve our memory and learning skills.   

There are three aspects we should work on while working on improving our memory.

Believe that you can.

Believe is a force we possess. It can be both positive and negative force depends on what you believe.

Henry Ford once said, If you think you can or can’t, you are right.

Everyone believes something about everything, but most of the time it is not chosen believe, rather it is adopted from our environments such as family, religion, parents and country.

With practice, we can replace our negative belief with positive ones.

Exercise for your body and mind.

We should give at least 30 min daily to your body and 15 min to your mind to exercise. It is well-studied fact that exercise improves our learning and memory.

When we exercise, our mind releases endorphin which is a chemical responsible for bringing happiness into our lives.

Practices such as mindfulness and meditation increase our power of concentration and reduce the daily stress from our body, mind and soul. That is the reason it is very effective when we improve our learning abilities.

Eat foods that are good of mind.

I am sure we all heard it before. We are what we eat.

Food such as avocado, blueberries, coconut oil, seeds, dark chocolate and walnut are considered as super food for our mind. They are not only good for our mind, but also for our body.

Learn and research about food and chose it wisely.

In the modern world, where we are depended on technology for everything. We use apps for to do and an alarm to wake up. We have reminder for every event in our lives. Our mind has a lesser use which results in poor memory.

These 5 steps – SUAVE – help to activate our mind and improve our learning and memory. Next time when you are in a meeting, follow these step to remember everyone’s name. You will be surprised how a simple trick can make you extraordinary.

To your mind power.




Hi, Amazing people,

Thank you for reading my blogs. I trust it can help you in some way or another. Please do leave your opinions and any thoughts in the comment section just below this. And, follow me on your email or blog for all updates.

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