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Be Like Sherlock: Create a Mind Palace!


With finals nearly here (Happy Holidays to all of us), finding the motivation to keep studying when we’re so close to the end of the semester is going to be difficult. But, as someone who watches way too much Sherlock (and Netflix in general) will tell you that sometimes you can get inspiration from your favorite shows. Mine just so happens to be Sherlock and House, but mostly Sherlock because let’s be real: Benedict Cumberbatch is a total boss.

So, what the Emily Dickinson is a mind palace? So glad you’ve asked. A mind palace is a mnemonic device used as an ordering tool in which to remember things that one would otherwise forget, such as lists of items, dates, and so on. Sherlock Holmes employs this mnemonic device by using his vast knowledge stored within his mind palace to solve crimes, but this concept is not something created by Arthur Conan Doyle or the geniuses at BBC. It is a technique Sherlock borrowed from the ancient Greeks and Romans.

So how does one construct a mind palace? Usually, you are encouraged to pick an architectural structure such as your house or a place that you know like the back of your hand. The way in which you order your mind is entirely up to you, but in the creation of a mind palace, this will then help you create mnemonic devices in which to remember what you must and filter through the things you don’t. Also, when you’re in your mind palace, I find it’s much like meditation: you can stretch out your consciousness which then allows you to focus on the task(s) at hand and therefore ace all your exams.


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