THEM: ” Hi, My name is.. ( YOU: Wow, they are kinda cute ).. Nice to meet you.”
YOU: ” Hi, nice to meet you .. ”
Grr. You just missed their name. It’s almost like you didn’t even hear it – or if you did, it went in one ear and directly out the other without even stopping to wave at your brain.
THEM: ” Well, it’s been nice hanging out with you for the past few hours ”
YOU: ” You too, ..buddy.. See you later. ”
Ug. You’ve been hanging out with them all night and had learned their name at some point, but when it would be most impactful and respectful to confidently smile and call them by their name – *poof* – it’s gone. You’re forced to use one of those filler names like “buddy”, “dude” or “man”. If they’re a girl, your filler names are probably useless.
Name Attention Deficiency Disorder (NADD) is an affliction that so many struggle with today. With so many other things flying through our brains, we rarely take the time to register a name to memory before we are on to the next thought. Even if we take a moment to repeat their name in hopes we can lock it to memory, moments later it’s usually gone when you start talking about last saturday night’s epic adventures or what you had for dinner. Sometimes you may ask again, but usually most of us are too embarrassed and resign to the fact that the next time they’ll have to greet them awkwardly with a filler name.
For those suffering from NADD, there are a number of things you might try to become better at remembering names. Our soon-to-release Namerick iPhone app is obviously the best, but many also find some of these techniques to be helpful.
- Ask them how they spell their name (unless it’s Fred or Andy then you’ll just look dumb)
- Imagine their name scribbled on their forehead in red magic marker. Try to resist actually doing this if you happen to have a red marker
- Think of something memorable with the same first letter as their name (ie. Jackrabbit when you meet a Jackson) or create a namerick
- Try to remember their name again in exactly 10 minutes just before when studies have shown your brain is most likely to forget
In an era that is collectively so bad with names, learning to be better at remembering names will make you stand out among the pack. In our recent survey, people listed ‘remember[ing] my name’ as a trait they like in new people they meet.