We’ve all experienced it: The frustration of entering a room and forgetting what we were going to do. Or get. Or find.
New research from University of Notre Dame Psychology Professor Gabriel Radvansky suggests that passing through doorways is the cause of these memory lapses.
“Entering or exiting through a doorway serves as an ‘event boundary’ in the mind, which separates episodes of activity and files them away,” Radvansky explains.
“Recalling the decision or activity that was made in a different room is difficult because it has been compartmentalized.”
I gotta say, this makes total sense to me. Memory in the human brain is thought to be so pattern dependent that it’s best reproduced in holographic models. That implies that remembering something is tied to your environment, and walking through a door is pretty much the definition of changing your environment.