How many moments or days of your life have you lost to the “forgettable zone”? – A space and time of life where you did nothing memorable. A day or period of time that slipped into the depths of your memory, never to be seen again.
Boring, normal, ordinary days where nothing much happened. Nights out when you didn’t talk about anything particularly memorable. Workdays where you’re in/out of the office and the days blur together.
I shake my head in disbelief at how many days of my life I have lost into the forgettable zone…And I live a pretty damn exciting life! I travel all over the world and I’ve created an incredible memory bank of experiences.
But what about all the people out there working jobs that they hate, eating the same restaurants every week, same old thoughts flurrying through their mind, seeing the same people, with the same repeatable mundane habits…Every week, every month, every year.
Sure, along the way there are events and memories created. The moments where they get the brief pause from the forgettable zone and build memories that will last. But still….what does the ratio look like? How much of the day, every day, is lost to the forgettable zone?
The forgettable zone is the silent killer of a good life. It’s the infection that allows days to bleed in and out of each other and lose months in the blink of an eye. It’s the evil little parasite that slowly eats away at more of your life, consuming more of your time in the forgettable zone and creating less memories every year that passes by.
I say it’s time we rise up! It’s time we crush that fucking parasite underneath our shoes and say “fuck you! I’m taking my life back bitch.”
So how can we inject some LIFE into our days?! How can we make that shit unforgettable? How can you make the mundane more exciting so that you can look back on days or a period of time with a smile?
Personally, this is one of the reasons I love to write and make weird videos. Every time I write a post, I can remember where I was and what I was doing at the time I wrote it. Every time I do something weird and film it, it’s a strong memory, a strong anchor, to that moment and place in time.
Every writing and video is an anchor to this moment right here right now.
Every word I write means that it will never be lost in the forgettable zone.
Every picture and video captures that moment in time. Nothing can be forgotten once it has been captured.
But still, I like to ask myself, “how can I make the mundane more exciting?”, “How can I build more novelty into my day?”
And then I like to run experiments and do weird shit…like this one….
I’ve been reading a book lately called “The Dice Man”, the story of a Psychologist who gets bored with life and decides to let a roll of the dice make all of his decisions for him.
So naturally, I decided to give it a try for myself.
While walking to work one day I said to myself, “Ok, 1/2 = Starbucks, 3/4=Juice, 5/6=nothing/get coffee at work.”
I rolled, and then hit 2, Starbucks it is.
I walk into Starbucks and again, 1=Frappuccino 2=Cold Brew, 3=Cold Brew w Vanilla 4=Filter Coffee, 5=Americano, 6=Nothing and leave
I hit 3 this time, Cold Brew w Vanilla.
Now I’m having fun. I go odds or evens for the next few.
Credit or cash?
What name do I want to use?
Should I talk to the guy in front of me?
I hit Cash, Mr. Smiles, and Yes, I talked up the Japanese man in front of me.
I walked out of the Starbucks buzzing with joy and happiness.
Because it was a novel experience.
I gave myself a heavy dose of something new on an otherwise ordinary day. I gave myself something that I will remember. I took myself out of the forgettable zone.
This experience taught me something important – you can always make an ordinary day memorable.
This day of letting the dice decide is something I will never forget. It’s burned into my memory now. I’ll always have a vivid imagery of those events.
Most importantly, I’ll always remember how I FELT while doing it, giving myself access to those feelings of excitement, anticipation and giddiness that I can access in the future when I need a positive memory to pull from.
The dice took an ordinary day and spiced it up a bit. Made it stand out to me in my mind.
Every day is an opportunity to create memories.
Or take this other day for example.
A friend of mine and I were talking about building an e-commerce drop shipping website.
One day he messages me the URL, “I built this over the last few days…”
I click on the link – he built an e-commerce store for gay men’s underwear.
I’ve never laughed so hard in my life. I thought it was the most hilariously brilliant idea I’d ever seen before. (For context he’s straight and married and his wife helps with the website and they advertise on gay-porn websites…it’s pretty damn funny!)
But why is this important?
In that moment he created a memory that we will never forget. I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when he sent me that link. I remember laughing uncontrollably. I remember the first pictures he had on there.
In that moment we created a strong memory – an anchor that will never be lost to the forgettable zone.
Again – an otherwise boring or routine day that could have been lost – but wasn’t.
My long meandering point here is that we can do this with any day. OR, we can do this with as many days that we can.
I don’t think it’s possible to remember every single day of your life (And it would be exhausting to try) – A portion will always fall into the forgettable zone. And that’s ok. Just be conscious while you’re doing it.
The point here is to be aware that you are losing time to this abyss. To realize that you are in control and you have the ability to create memories for yourself every day. That your life is in your hands and you can always do your best to live a memorable life.
In a practical sense too, there are ways that we can actively build and create memories on a daily basis. Here are some of my favorites:
- Journaling –
- Every day that you write your thoughts down onto a page, you’re capturing that specific moment in time in your life. When you look back on it, you can remember that day and how you felt, and how far you’ve since come.
- Pictures –
- a picture captures the day in the same way! Capturing a moment through your own eyes and perspective. Whether it’s a selfie or a picture of your surroundings, pictures are anchors to this current moment.
- Buy someone a gift –
- Giving (and receiving) gifts are often very memorable events in our lives. We can remember how we felt about the gift (whether we liked it or not!). It creates a positive memory in that place and time. I also usually remember the shopping for the gift, trying to think of something meaningful, and that’s something I remember too. Gifts create memories.
- Switch up your morning routine –
- Do something different in the morning! Take a different route to work. Eat a different breakfast. Listen to different music. Add something in like exercise or meditation. Wake up for the sunrise! There’s endless possibilities!
- Try a new workout (or start!) –
- If you already have a workout routine, try a new exercise. If you don’t exercise at all, try! Even if you never go back to the gym, that first attempt will be one that you remember 😉
- Get outside of your comfort zone –
- Do something that scares you. It can be something like approaching people or speaking in public. Trying a new sport that is challenging. Embracing some type of shyness or vulnerability. Only you know what makes you uncomfortable – go out there and do it. Why? Because you’ll remember it!
- Go on an adventure –
- Plan some long epic adventure and go for it! Vacations/journeys/adventures are always memorable. I can list out every trip I’ve ever taken in my life. It’s pretty damn beautiful!
Here’s also some habits to avoid – habits that I feel make us more likely to fall into the forgettable zone…Or, let me reframe it – I find that my life is most likely to fall into the forgettable zone when…
- I do the same routine for too long (same morning ritual, same food for lunch/dinner, same place for work – running a circle of back and forth in my small plane of existence)
- I spend too much time in the same place – I get bored of places easily, I find that if I stay somewhere for too long, I fall into a routine and before I know it days are slipping into the forgettable zone.
- When I haven’t gotten into nature recently – Nature is my antidote to unforgettable. Whenever I feel like my days are slipping, it’s usually because nature has been missing in my life.
- I wake up with a hangover and spend the day recovering – I can’t say I remember a single great hangover day in my life. It’s why I now measure my success of a night by how little of a hangover I have the next day.
- I spend the whole day smoking weed – As much as I love my weed, I’ve lost a lot of days to the forgettable zone simply high out of my mind eating, watching, reading, and not doing all too much. They were fun days in the moment, just not memorable in the long run.
In the end it’s all about introducing novelty. The brain loves novelty (new things, ideas, places, experiences), so by injecting it into our days we can naturally have a more memorable life.
These are just some small ways of introducing NEW into your day, but there’s more if you keep trying. Music, dance, and art are all a never-ending well of new creative expressions.
So find ways to spice shit up. Go to more events and concerts. Throw yourself in more uncomfortable situations. Try new things.
Why? Because you’ll remember all of it. Because you will reclaim your life and build memories instead of falling into the abyss of the forgettable zone….