Why Can’t I Remember Things From My Past? (Reasons)

We all usually experience Faulty memory. It happens ever again that we can’t find our car keys, or our glasses or our pen or anything else.

We forget the person’s name within 5 minutes of meeting with him or her.

It is normal to forget someone’s name after 5 minutes with whom we meet in a party. We forgot the place where we park our car.

Or maybe sometimes we forget the groceries at stores. There is nothing to worry about. Memory cannot be perfect for anyone ever.

If there are some lapses, it’s ok. Nothing to worry about some memory lapses, even if you are young.

This article will answer your basic question: Why can’t I remember things from my past.

“I can’t remember my past very well”: Why?

You may not be able to remember your past very well because of various reasons that may be both physical or psychological in nature. On one hand not being able to remember the past very well may often be a sign of dehydration, and on the other hand it can also mean that you were likely not in the best state of mind when you made those memories, which is why you are not able to remember them now.

What’s Normal?

To understand why you can’t understand things from your past? We have to understand brain functioning.

It’s hard to remember recently learned things. For example, if we get introduced to someone at a party, we might forget his / her name in the next 10 to 15 minutes.

It happens because they haven’t yet taken root in your mind. Although our brain has so much storage space, it needs some to make room for new and useful items.

Our brains have to get rid of less important details before it stores new useful things.

The brain will also get rid of those that we don’t call on often.

 It is normal to forget a scheduled appointment or a meeting. If we keep something somewhere and forget the place, it is also normal.

Generally, it happens because we were not paying attention closely.

This is also the answer to the question of why can’t I remember things from my past, because we haven’t paid close attention to the events or things. 

We might be focusing on something else or might be thinking about some other person.

Or possibly we were not mentally present physically. We also probably forget things if we are learning new things when we are sick or exhausted or stressed out.

This may also be a probable answer to our question: why can’t I remember things from my past?

If you don’t want to ask again, why can’t I remember things from my past? You have to do simple things to improve your memory.

Getting your life a bit organized may help you a lot.

Get your life more organized.

If you want things to be less likely to be missing in the future, just hide those items that misplace frequently in the same place.

Dedicate places for things like installed key hook for keys and charging stations for cell phones to find them easily.

Try to write a daily diary.

It is good to write a daily diary to keep track of your schedule, phone numbers, birthdays, or other recurring important information.

Writing things on papers helps your things to take root in your brain.

At times, you will not even look into your notes and be able to recall things. This is the miracle of writing things down.

Consult your calendar.

 Keeping a datebook or wall calendar and noting your appointments, family outings, and other important things will also help you to overcome the question of why can’t I remember things from my Past.

Keep track of your next day’s schedule and assess the previous day’s schedule regularly before you go to bed.

It will help you to keep events renewed in your mind.

Play word games.

If you will create an online password using abbreviations you’ll be less likely to forget it.

Always use sentences or phrases that are easy to recall.

For instance, you can use the first letters of your name along with your birth year to make your password, and it will be so easy to remember.

BHO61 could be an easy password for Barack Hussein Obama born in 1961. Or you can use the things or events that mean a lot for you, such things are easy to remember and hard to forget.

Personal events or things are also not easy for hackers to figure out. 

Repetition matters.

If you want to overwhelm your question of why can’t I remember things from my past, keep reminding things repeatedly.

Saying something again will make things stick to your minds. 

Work at it. 

 Challenging your brain may also help you to keep things better. Research says excitement keeps the brain active.

For doing that, you learn a new language, discuss books with others, or solving a crossword puzzle can also be helpful.


Socializing also helps to keep things memorized and to keep brains alert.

Spending time with family and friends or even volunteering your time can keep your minds active.

Lifestyle and Memory

Memory is affected by our lifestyle as well. To find the answer to the question, why can’t I remember things from my past?

We have to look back into our lifestyle. Our diet plays a vital role in it.

A high level of cholesterol, blood pressure, or blood sugar can be a reason for clogging or damaging the blood vessels around our brains.

A study conducted at Harvard University showed that those people who consumed saturated fat, which was extracted from meat and dairy products, are more likely to have less memory than those who are not or less consuming saturated fats.

Considering the Mediterranean diet is a wise decision if someone is trying to make good food choices.

Consuming olive oil, Omega-3 Rich fish, and lots of fresh vegetables are more likely to improve your memory and thinking abilities as well.

We must keep in mind that all those things and activities that are good for our body, also put a positive effect on our brains.

Exercising or even walking daily at least 30 minutes increases blood flow to the brain.

For keeping a healthier brain we need good regular sleep as well, which helps our brain file memories so that we can access them in the future.

Smoking is very much hazardous to health as well as to memory.

If you need an answer to the question, why can’t I remember things from my past?

Smoking habits can be an answer. Smoking damages blood vessels. Drinking is also one of the damaging habits.

Research shows that heavy drinking disturbs our memory. If someone is a heavy drinker, he/she must moderate drinking habits.

In the expert’s opinion, having 1 drink per day for women and 2 for men, might actually protect the memory. 

Aging effect on Memory:

As the year passes, Memory errors will get worse.

Normally, at the beginning of the 20th year, certain chemicals start reducing in our brains, and as a result, we start losing our brain cells.

Our memories are much sharper at young ages rather than at older ones. And it completely makes sense.

Age can also be an answer to the question of why can’t I remember things from my past?

Alzheimer’s is not the only cause of major memory changes.

Memory can be damaged due to strokes, head injuries, lack of vitamins in our diet, and irregular sleeping trends as well.

Your drug might also put some side effects on your memory. You need to consult your doctor if you have a doubt about it.

To answer the question, why can’t I remember things from my past?

You need to recheck all the above factors as well.

There are some other reasons as well, that are more serious then we consider them.

If you regularly forget the place where you always park your car, or you forget the address of your home or office, don’t take it lightly.

Visit a doctor. If you cannot recognize a person from your family or close friends, when others are telling about him/her to you, get a proper checkup by your doctor.

If you are living with someone having the above problems or if he or she is not sure about self-identity or cannot remember that year is it.

Take them to the doctor.

Some completely fit people who can’t recall their own lives.

Psychologists in Canada think they’ve recognized a completely new memory disorder in healthy people with no history distinguished by a particular inability to remember their past.

This may look like a form of amnesia, but the three individuals currently have no brain damage or mental sickness recently haven’t experienced any psychological trauma or illness.

Recently recognized that some people have an extraordinary ability to remember their lives in acute detail this is known as hyperthymesia or “highly superior autobiographical memory“, Daniela Palombo and her team put forward their mental disorder is really different and opposite, they propose the label “severely deficient autobiographical memory”.

Three individuals reported by the researchers with the predicate disorder: AA is a 52-year-old married woman; BB is a 40-year-old single man, and CC is a 49-year-old man who is living with his partner.

All three are running their everyday lives perfectly, they have jobs, however, they claim a long life failure to recall and remember past occasions from a first-person perspective (a condition with which they became totally aware of in their late teens or early adulthood).

They are completely normal, their memory for facts and skills is completely normal.

Although two of the individuals many years earlier had an experience of depression, recently no evidence was found again.

Through the neuropsychological testing for intelligence, memory, and mental performance, they are highly scored as compared to normal.

One key exception was a poor performance on the ability to draw a complex figure from memory.

The researchers think this visual memory deficit could be a solution to understanding their lack of autobiographical memories.

The researchers interviewed AA, BB, and CC to test their memory about different incidents from their pasts to find the answer to the question that why can’t I remember things from my past?

Different questions about their generic life events and personal incidents had been asked and the participants proposed themselves after looking at their calendars or consulting loved ones.

FAQ about Why Can’t I Remember Things From My Past

Why can’t I remember things from my past?

There are very few people who have hyperthymesia or highly Superior Autobiographical Memory.

It is very unusual if someone can recall most of their past with very accurate details.

What is the reason for not remembering shocking events?

Dissociative disorders are a group of conditions that also includes Dissociative amnesia.

When a person, after a stressful or traumatic event, blocks out certain information and makes him or her unable to remember significant personal information, this situation is called Dissociative Amnesia.

And this is the answer: why can’t I remember things from my past?

Forgetting most of the things from childhood is normal?

Most of us cannot recall things from our life initially 6 or 8 years and this is considered quite normal.

This is called the Childhood Amnesia; it is also called Infantile Amnesia.

Unable to recall things from childhood are normal and real.

We are still unable to fully understand how our brain and memory works, which is also a reason for the question that why can’t I remember things from my past?

How can I recall things from my past?

When we talk about the past of ourselves or others, it is associated with the elaboration of the memory.

Kids will have better autobiographical narratives if their parents keep telling them about their past events.

Maintain the diary about the current events and revisiting it in upcoming years is even more beneficial and effective.


Webmd.com: “Why can’t I remember things from my past?”

Digest.bps.org.uk: “People can’t remember their own lives.” 

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