# Remembering can be improved by deliberately creating cues

If Forgetting is a healthy process of inhibiting irrelevant memory, remembering then is about circumventing the inhibition so that we can pull relevant memory. Based on this definition, if we want to remember more important information when we need it, we have to make those memories more relatable to others.

There are two types of memory strengths: retrieval strength and storage strength. When a piece of memory has a high retrieval strength, that particular memory is easily retrievable, especially given a cue or environment. Therefore if what we're interested in is to remember important information when needed, we need to increase the information's retrieval strength. Increasing memory retrieval strength can be done by deliberately adding more cues to the memory. The easiest way for me to remind myself to post a package the next day, for example, is to put the package by the front door. Practicing zettelkasten is the practical example of deliberately creating many cues at scale, so that notes are inter-connected to each other.

Ahrens, How to Take Smart Notes (p. 42)

The collection of good ideas is diluted to insignificance by all the other notes, which are only relevant for a specific project or actually not that good on second sight. [...] It is not surprising that my friend has a bookshelf filled with notebooks full of wonderful ideas, but not a single publication to show.

Ahrens, How to Take Smart Notes (p. 101)

Robert and Elizabeth Ligon Bjork from the University of California suggest distinguishing between two different measurements when it comes to memory: Storage strength and retrieval strength (Bjork 2011).
Learning would be not so much about saving information, like on a hard disk, but about building connections and bridges between pieces of information to circumvent the inhibition mechanism in the right moment. It is about making sure that the right "cues" trigger the right memory, about how we can think strategically to remember the most useful information when we need it.