Can you sort your memories? What if you were asked to pick the five most important? What will they reveal about you? Made famous in 2015 by the animated movie On the contrary, the concept of “primary memory” recently took TikTok by storm. According to this theory, our personality and behaviors are determined by five basic memories from our childhood. False belief or established scientific fact?
Well, this “central memory” thing is a complete myth, Science issues a warning. Although our memories contribute greatly to our psychological state, this view is incorrect. First, there is no limit to the capacity of our memory: long-preserved autobiographical memories are not limited to five.
Failing to determine our personality, they occupy three main functions described by psychologists: they “Define Yourself”, that is, we know ourselves through our past experiences; They encourage social interaction with others when we tell them; Finally, our memory has a guiding function because it helps us draw lessons from the past to solve problems.
It is important to emphasize that the memories are not from our childhood – quite the opposite. A phenomenon called the “memory bump” explains that our strongest memories are concentrated in adulthood, between the ages of 15 and 25, while our early years are relatively poor. One explanation is that our most formative experiences typically occur in late adolescence, when self-esteem is established.
When memory deceives us
However, even if emotional events are particularly fixed in our memory, no one can predict which memories will be immortal. We are even likely to forget many details that seemed essential to us at the time.
Also, beware of false memories. Just because some of them are part of long-term memory doesn’t mean they’re real. In reality, all our memories are moving, forgotten, or contain errors. These errors are caused by the functioning of our memory.
When we encode a memory, we remember only essential and few details. So if we want to tell one of our adventures, let’s reconstruct the basics and remember, and fill in the holes of history to fill in what we’ve forgotten.
Additionally, we tend to reinterpret the meaning of an event according to different stages of our lives. For example, if a romantic relationship ever ends, the happy memory of the engagement can be darkened with the introduction of negative emotions. Every time we recall our past, we have the opportunity to change its details.
Although the concept of “primary memory” is entirely invented, it’s still useful — here’s the proof — to highlight the importance of our memories.