Next month we’re off to the Vendée for our holiday and I’m really excited, as well as nostalgic – it was a popular choice of my parents when my brother and I were small.

It’s got me thinking about the crucial role of the senses in locking in memories – helping us remember things in rich detail. This is central to how we design training at Green Door and we like to think it’s one of the things that makes us a bit different.

The memories I have of France are predominantly food-based: the smell of a crêpe cooking and the spoils of my dad’s early morning croissant-run. I remember learning to swim in the chill of an outdoor pool and sunny days on the beach exploring salty rock pools. Dire Straights played repeatedly on the car’s tape-deck. No iTunes or DVD players back then. We had Mark Knopfler and endless games of I Spy.

I’m really looking forward to our trip, seeing new memories being formed for my own children and to indulge my own reminiscence.

Our amazing brains store information as a pattern of neurons firing in response to stimuli, and the richer the experience/memory, the more permanent the learning. We also store information topographically, so the memory of a wonderful meal will involve storage in specialised areas: tastes (parietal lobe), sound (temporal lobe), people (occipital lobe), etc. Here are a range of resources exploring this neuroscience in more depth.

So to generate learning that really stays the course, at Green Door we focus on creating training events that are vivid and multi-faceted – based on sound, feeling, colour, movement, taste and even smell (good ones!). We believe the very best training environments are vibrant, dynamic and…well, memorable.

How are you nourishing your brain? How could you use colour, association, repetition, smell or music to help you remember key things.

If we could help your organisation to deliver training or facilitate events where the learning sticks and real change results, do drop us a line.

And if you’re off on your holidays too…bon voyage!