Are you one of those who keeps forgetting things every now and then which people remember normally? Well, it is the time to take pride in your condition. Remembering things has always been perceived as a strong mental trait. However, according to a new study conducted by two researchers at The University of Toronto, memory plays a pretty important role in intelligence and decision making. The researchers concluded that the memory’s goal is not to remember everything we’ve been told or everything we’ve learned. But, instead, it’s to optimize decision making.
The paper published in Neuron focused on various studies that explained the neurobiology behind forgetting and remembering things. It turned out that these two processes interact and sync with each other for “better decision-making in dynamic, noisy environment.”
The author of the study, Professor Blake Richards explains that the real purpose of the memory is the optimization of decision making. The brain performs this activity by filtering and deleting out all the irrelevant information stored in the brain.
So in this context, bad memory is actually a mechanism in the brain which serves to quickly vacate space for the important information and not allow the brain to waste energy and space remembering the irrelevant and mundane information. Actually, the brain focuses on creating a general and simple picture of the events or a simplified version of the information, which could serve as a means of better decision making.
This means that learning by heart, something which is impossible for the ‘forgetful’ ones, is not something the brain would do for you.
Well, that means, the more you forget such irrelevant and mundane ‘facts’ the more your brain performs in adding relevant and important information from them into a more general picture, which further gives a more keen perception of reality.