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How To Memorize Numbers Using Mnemonics

Learn how to memorize numbers using the ventriloquist technique, the story method, memory palace, and the Major System with examples

Ever wondered why numbers are always very hard to memorize?

It’s because they lack sensory attributes like color, texture, smell, sound, or flavor.  They are often perceived as shapeless entities that blend together, making it difficult to remember specific ones accurately

As numbers grow larger, visualizing them becomes increasingly challenging.

Example, it’s easier to picture two cupcakes than distinguish between a group of 66 and 100 cupcakes

So, by the end of this blog post, we promise to solve all 2 of these problems

  1. You constantly forget your credit card number, and phone number and find yourself trusting digital devices over your memory
  2. No matter how hard you try to memorize, it’s never in your long-term memory

For that, we’re going to use the Visual Mnemonic system – one of the core frameworks Nelson Dellis uses in his 7-week Memory Mastery Program

Fancy Tripling Your Memory?

Enroll in our program – Everest Memory with Nelson Dellis, the 5X USA Memory Champion and learn how to remember anything retain information for the long-term

To warm up, let’s start with small numbers – PIN Codes, addresses, or even “how many times you checked your phone today”

By developing mnemonic systems specifically tailored to small numbers, we establish a solid foundation for more complex memorization tasks.

1.The Ventriloquist Technique

This fancy-named technique is when you use distractions and distinctiveness to create mental images of the number that stick in your working memory.

Here’s one of our favorite examples that Nelson gives in his 7-week Memory program:

When counting or recalling a number, say it aloud in different voices, accents, or even languages to visualize the numbers better.

To understand this better, let’s say you want to count the number of times you check your phone in a day. 

So, every time you pick up your phone, count aloud and you can maybe use a thick English accent for one, Spanish for two, your high-pitched voice for three, and so on…

You can experiment with different pitches, accents, drawls, trills, robotic voices, or celebrity impersonations. 

The key is to make it engaging and memorable.

2.The Story Method: Creating Narratives with Numbers

You and I both know stories are the best shot at remembering things better.

  1. “My keys are on 3rd shelf, in the living room.”
  2. “When I was about to place my keys, I saw a lizard going past the living room. I’m terrified of lizards so I quickly rushed into the living room which is where I saw my Mom watching my favorite show “Grey’s Anatomy”. As I kissed my mom, she asked me to pick up her glasses from the third shelf. I opened the third draw and….. Ahh..that’s where I kept my keys!

Now, which one would you remember better?

Let’s use this same technique to remember numbers. 

Step 1 — We’ll have to assign an entity/element for each number from 0-9. An example would be:

  • 0- Mango
  • 1- Racoon
  • 2- Peter 
  • 3- Taylor Swift
  • 4- Mark Zuckerberg
  • 5- ChatGPT
  • 6-Shoes
  • 7- Cristiano Ronaldo
  • 8- Paris
  • 9- Yoga

Step 2 — Craft a ridiculously funny story and visualize it. Let’s say you want to memorize the number 81203

The story would be: In Paris (8), a raccoon (1) named Peter (2) danced with mangoes (0) and Taylor Swift (3)

The Story Method allows you to associate numbers with engaging and memorable narratives, making them more tangible and easier to remember. 

Experiment with your creativity, and the possibilities are endless.

Conquering Larger Numbers

Once you’ve mastered the art of memorizing small numbers, it’s time to tackle more significant numerical sequences. 

Here are two techniques that can help you conquer larger numbers with ease.

1. The Major System: Converting Numbers into Sounds

The Major System is a mnemonic technique that allows you to convert numbers into words by associating consonant sounds with each digit. This helps in memorizing numbers more effectively by creating vivid and memorable images.

Here’s a breakdown of the Major System by Nelson Dellis:

Note: Remembering consonants for each number can be a real struggle, but the table below also has mnemonics to help.





“s,” “z,” or soft “c” (as in “cider”)

You can think of the “z” in “Zero” to remember this sound.


“t” or “d.” 

This mnemonic is based on the fact that both “t” and “d” require you to write one downstroke, resembling the number 1.



The letter “n” has two downstrokes, hence the association with the number 2.



The letter “m” has three downstrokes. Additionally, if you flip the number 3, it resembles the letter “m.”



The last letter of the word “four” is “r,” which helps in associating it with the number 4.



If you hold up your left hand, which has 5 fingers, the shape between your pointer finger and thumb forms an “L” shape.


“j,” “sh,” or soft “g” (as in “ginger”).

The number 6 resembles an inverted “G,” so “j,” “sh,” and soft “g” are grouped together due to their similar sounds.


“k,” hard “c” (as in “cash”), hard “g” (as in “gamble”), “ck,” or “q.” 

The capital letter “K,” when rotated 90 degrees clockwise, looks like two mirror images of the number 7 back-to-back.


“f” or “v.” 

The cursive lowercase letter “f” resembles the number 8, and both “f” and “v” produce similar sounds.


“p” or “b.”

The number 9 looks like a mirror image of the letter “p,” which in turn looks like an upside-down lowercase “b.”

Let’s say we want to remember the number 897

Step 1 — Using the Major System, we can convert the number 897 into a word or phrase. Here’s how we can do it:

  • 8: Represented by “f” or “v.” Let’s use “f” in this case.
  • 9: Represented by “p” or “b.” We’ll go with “p” here.
  • 7: Represented by “k,” hard “c” (as in “cash”), hard “g” (as in “gamble”), “ck,” or “q.” Let’s choose “k.”

Step 2 — Now, let’s insert some vowels to create a word:

Using “f” (8), “p” (9), and “k” (7), we can form the word “FAPK.”

Remember, the specific spelling doesn’t matter; it’s about the sounds and associations. 

Step 3 — You can create a mnemonic story or visual image based on this word to help you remember the number 897. 

For example, you could imagine a chef wearing a chef’s hat (represented by “f”) cooking a delicious dish with a big pot (represented by “p”), and using a knife (represented by “k”) to chop ingredients.

This technique allows you to transform numbers into memorable words or visualizations, making it easier to recall and retain numbers.

2. The Memory Palace Technique: Mapping Numbers to Familiar Locations

The Memory Palace Technique, also known as the Method of Loci, is a powerful method for memorizing large amounts of information, including numbers. 

This technique involves associating each number with a specific location within a familiar place, such as your home.

For example, imagine associating the number 739 with your bedroom. 

“Visualize the number 7 as a ceiling fan, the number 3 as a vase on your dresser, and the number 9 as a bed. By mentally walking through your bedroom and connecting each item to its corresponding number, you create a vivid and memorable visual representation of the numerical sequence.”

The Memory Palace Technique leverages spatial memory and familiar environments to enhance your ability to recall numbers effortlessly.

On a Memory Spree?

Numbers play an integral role in our lives, and by harnessing the power of mnemonics, we can transform them from abstract concepts into memorable entities. 

Starting with small numbers and employing techniques such as the Ventriloquist Technique and the Story Method allows us to establish a solid foundation for effective number memorization. 

As we progress to larger numbers, the Major System and the Memory Palace Technique provide powerful tools to conquer numerical sequences with ease. 

With practice, creativity, and a dash of mnemonic magic, anyone can unlock their potential to memorize numbers and navigate the numerical landscape with confidence.

Do you want to Triple Your Memory But Don't Have Time To Practice?

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Learn how to memorize numbers using the ventriloquist technique, the story method, memory palace, and the Major System with examples
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