Most of us have experienced the embarrassment of forgetting to do that important thing we promised someone we would do. Sometimes you did everything you could to remember, yet it still slipped your mind.
Our new research could hold the explanation. No matter how hard you try to remember your plans, there is always an element of luck involved.
In the morning you decide to call your old friend in the evening. During the intervening time, you also decide to buy groceries for dinner, pick up the kids from afterschool club and many other things. Psychologists say we cannot keep all these intentions active in our working memory all day. Working memory is the type of memory involved when you maintain some information in your mind to solve problems (like subtracting 377 from 527) or to write down a list of names (when the pen and paper is at the other side of the room).
Working memory is limited, both in its capacity and in the duration of time we can hold information. That is why people need long-term memory to store their intentions. Long-term memory is a store of information maintained by the brain outside the conscious mind.
As we go about our lives, we hold several intentions for the future at…