I’m not the best at remembering names. I do okay in my host culture, where all the names are familiar and there is lots of mental scoffolding on which to hang them. In my adopted culture, however, it’s much, much for difficult. Not only is it difficult, but in my adopted Kosovar Albanian culture, names are much more important, and much more frequently used than in my North American culture. What’s a missionary to do?
eHow has a some good tips that I think will be helpful whether I’m introduced to Fred or Faruk.
Pay attention when you are introduced to someone. A few minutes after you meet the person, say his or her name to yourself again. If you have forgotten it, talk to the person again and ask for the name. Write down the new name three times while picturing the person's face; do this as soon as possible after meeting someone. Ask how to spell a difficult name, or glance at the spelling on the person's business card, if it's offered. If you know the spelling of a word and can picture it in your mind, you'll remember it better. Connect a name to a common word you will remember. For example, the name Salazar could sound like 'salamander,' 'bazaar' or 'sell a jar.' Make a connection to the person's hobby or employment. 'Bill the pill' might help you remember the name of your pharmacist, for example.
What are you best tips for remembering names? Check out the eHow link for most tips.