Seeing Beyoncé live should be one of the most memorable nights of your life.
But fans who attend her Renaissance tour suffer bouts of “post-concert amnesia” due to a bizarre phenomenon.
It turns out that high anticipation for a show can lead to memory loss, meaning large chunks of the night may be missing days later.
Scientists attribute this to the increase in your stress levels that occurs when your emotions are heightened – whether positive or negative.
This tells the memory-related neurons in your brain to fire aimlessly.
The body thinks it may be under attack and doesn’t waste its energy creating new memories.
dr Dean Burnett, a neuroscientist at Cardiff University, said so Daily mail: “When you’re at a concert of someone you love, surrounded by thousands of very excited other people, and you’re listening to music that you’ve formed an emotional connection with, a lot of emotions are going to happen to you all at once.”
“Not only is it taxing on the brain, but it also means that everything you experience has a high emotional quality, which means nothing ‘stands out’, and that’s important if you want to recall a memory later. “
And it’s not just reserved for gigs.
Ewan McNay, associate professor of psychology at the State University of New York, recounted TIME Magazine: “This is not a concert-specific phenomenon – it can happen at any time when you are in a very emotional state.”
“Too much excitement overwhelms memory formation and you are unable to create memories.”
So this applies to weddings, sports competitions and even holidays.
But Robert Kraft, a professor of cognitive psychology at Otterbein University in Ohio, thinks all is not bad.
He said if you don’t remember a performance minute by minute, it means you’re probably living in the moment.
“We don’t want to remember our life – we want to experience it,” he added.
“Not remembering is actually a tribute to being in the moment and enjoying it.”
Taylor Swift fans claim they’ve witnessed the phenomenon firsthand after spotting the pop star perform earlier this month.
Jenna Tocatilan, from New York, said she’s dreamed of seeing the 33-year-old singer for so long that it’s difficult to grasp the reality.
The 25-year-old, who attributed this to sensory overload, said: “Amnesia after the concert is real.”
“If I didn’t have the five minute video my friend kindly made of me jamming [to a surprise song]”I probably would have told anyone it didn’t happen.”
Nicole Booz, 32, who saw Swift in Philadelphia, said being there felt like an “out of body experience” that “didn’t really happen to me.”
She added, “But I know it was because my bank account took a $950 loss to cover the ticket.”
Some supporters said the concerts had such an impact that they thought there was another force at play.
“Taylor could do magic at her concert — people say Beyoncé does the same thing,” one said.
If you want to increase your chances of remembering the night, you can try entering a “semi-meditative state.”
according to dr Strength is about telling yourself to relax or making a commitment to standstill.