Memory is a fascinating subject to think about and discuss. While our memories can come in very handy in certain situations, there are many times when we are distracted or do not take the time to process information around us, leading us to forget people's names or other important things they tell us. For example, perhaps you never did the dishes like your parents asked to you because you were busy thinking about your plans for the weekend. Or perhaps you couldn't come up with an answer when a teacher called on you in class because you were nervous about being called on in the first place. Distractions, such as our nerves or excitement, can keep us from paying attention to what is around us. The first process of memory, which is called encoding, never actually happens in these types of situations. The encoding process is getting information into the memory.
This test shows how our memories can be tricky. When I first tried it I was rather confident in which penny I thought was the real one, but I ended up being wrong. It demonstrates how our minds do not always pay attention to details, even when it pertains to an object we see in everyday life.
I think it is important to understand the role of attention in memory because it is very easy to become distracted in our everyday lives. We are constantly being distracted by our cell phones and computers, that many times it causes us not to pay attention to our environments, or even conversations that we are a part of. Although I know it would be very difficult to eliminate all distractions, especially when these distractions are our own emotions, being aware of this information can help us to pay better attention, and perhaps improve our memories.