Use A Compliment When You’ve Forgotten A Name

It’s hard to remember names. Despite your best efforts, strategies, and even apps, you’re going to forget. Gretchen Rubin, writing for Psychology Today, has a good suggestion for avoiding the awkwardness that follows your lack of memory: use a compliment.

Photo by Cameramannz (Shutterstock).

For example:

“Wow, you have a terrific memory. I can’t believe you remember my name from that meeting six months ago. I can’t remember the names of people I met yesterday! So of course I have to ask you your name.”

When you simply can’t remember a name it’s not a bad idea to be a little apologetic and complimentary. As with the example, it helps to show you remember something so it’s clear you at least recall, to some extent, who you are talking to. In many cases people will care more that you actually remembered something about them rather than their name, especially if that moment had a particular impact. When I meet new people, I apologise for forgetting their names in advance. It’s extremely likely that I will, so I let them know ahead of time and ask them to just slip it into the conversation whenever possible because I want to remember them. A little bit of flattery can make your deficiencies much less of a problem.

Forget a Name? 6 Tips for Faking It [Psychology Today]

The Cheapest NBN 50 Plans

Here are the cheapest plans available for Australia’s most popular NBN speed tier.

At Lifehacker, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.


3 responses to “Use A Compliment When You’ve Forgotten A Name”

Leave a Reply