Have you ever wondered why you can remember things from long ago as if they happened yesterday, yet sometimes can't recall what you ate for dinner last night?
It's all about how much emotional impact the memory carries with it. Memories are clearer when they're emotionally arousing.
According to Rebecca Todd, a postdoctoral fellow in U of T's Department of Psychology and lead author of the study published recently in the Journal of Neuroscience, "Whether they're positive -- for example, a first kiss, the birth of a child, winning an award -- or negative, such as traumatic events, breakups, or a painful and humiliating childhood moment that we all carry with us, the effect is the same.""How vividly we perceive something in the first place predicts how vividly we will remember it later on," says Todd. "We call this 'emotionally enhanced vividness' and it is like the flash of a flashbub that illuminates an event as it's captured for memory."
Via Gina Stepp