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Scalar Learning Podcast

210 EpisodesProduced by Huzefa KapadiaWebsite

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EP 144: Memorization Techniques with U.S. Memory Champion Nelson Dellis

Hollywood often glamorizes human beings with extraordinary talents. It’s fascinating for the public to analyze and consider personal tales surrounding almost superhuman powers. Sometimes we hear stories of folks with unbelievable physical traits that make them incredibly strong or agile. Other times we are taken aback by individuals who have dizzying intellects with regards to math or science. There is one functionality in our cerebral wheelhouse that we all undeniably wish was stronger: memory. No matter how well we remember our daily tasks, academic formulas, or basic facts about friends and family, we all want to be better. That is why most of look upon folks like Nelson Dellis with great envy.


Nelson is a 4-time U.S.A. Memory Champion who has set national records by memorizing 310 digits in 5 minutes as well as 193 faces and names in 15 minutes. He also famously learned and recited 10,000 digits of pi. Mr. Dellis has been featured across all major media outlets as a tried and true mastery of memory. Considering all of his accolades, Nelson is clearly one of those lucky individuals who was given a genetic gift of awe inspiring memory. His ability is most certainly fodder for a Hollywood blockbuster about a supernaturally gifted individual with an unfathomable natural talent.

Except that’s not Nelson’s story. Society wants to deify this man as a memory wunderkind, but Dellis claims that this is not the case. Nelson, by his own admission, is a normal guy with no special mental abilities or talents. His interest in strengthening memory began as he watched his grandmother’s bout with Alzheimer’s disease. He entered the world of memory competitions less than a decade ago wrongfully presuming that all memory champions were geniuses. But according to Nelson, these memory juggernauts do not have photographic memories. Instead, they are the product of intense training. Moreover, they use a confluence of ancient memorization strategies that end up giving them immense mental power and a veritable illusion of mental genius.

In this episode, Nelson explains precisely how he and his memory competition cohorts unraveled the secrets of memorization so they can use it to achieve seemingly impossible feats. He also explains how he trains students and executives to sharpen their memories so that they can exploit their own abilities for their personal betterment. Finally, Nelson discusses his memory software, “Art of Memory,” that he will be unveiling to the world as a tool to fortify memory abilities. To learn more about Nelson and his amazing work, check out the full podcast episode!  To learn all about the Art of Memory, go to You can also learn more about Nelson Dellis at

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