I think it happens for everyone that sometimes we go to a room and forget why we went there. Is there any research or article on this?


1 Answer 1


It is a phenomenon known as room amnesia, some research has shown that your brain may use physical barriers like the room and doorways as a way to compartmentalize thoughts. One article summarizes it here:

The researchers say that when you pass through a doorway, your mind compartmentalizes your actions into separate episodes. Having moved into a new episode, the brain archives the previous one, making it less available for access. It’s as if you slam a mental door between what you knew and…what was I saying?

This is the research.

  • $\begingroup$ Nice! I wonder if this works with transparent walls. Perhaps Japanese style semi-transparent paper walls? $\endgroup$
    – terdon
    Commented Nov 30, 2012 at 12:49
  • $\begingroup$ Try it! Go to your local garden centre, stand in a display greenhouse, think of something to go and buy, then walk out of the greenhouse and see if you remember! $\endgroup$
    – rg255
    Commented Nov 30, 2012 at 13:00
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the concise yet comprehensive answer. $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Commented Jul 12, 2019 at 23:48

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