I was advised that self-testing for short-term memory was counter-productive, contradicting my own instincts and behavioural patterns which had always been to test myself to give me the confidence that whatever I attempting to absorb had properly sank in. For instance, at lunch-time I may have tried to remember what I'd had for breakfast or what I had planned to do for the day - these self-tests nearly always ended in failure which would sometimes lead to frustration.
In short time, I accepted that my short-term memory had been massively impaired by my RTC. I took onboard the advice to use coping strategies, as my memory could not be trained or repaired - for my recovery outcome this advice was priceless.
I very rarely needed to consult my phone to check the front door was locked or to find my car as simply having the knowledge that I could do so if needed seemed to make my memory kick into gear and recall the necessary information.
I've observed many people (e.g. elderly folk) draw a false inference that their impaired short-term memory is somehow indicative of their cognitive ability deteriorating. People can become extremely frustrated with themselves, despite their long-term memory often still being fantastic. I make an analogy to far-sightedness, where many people accept that they:
I learned that short-term and long-term memory are processed in different parts of the brain and it's useful to accept that one part can deteriorate at a different rate than another - just like with the eyesight issue. Acceptance of short-term memory limitations has been a huge contributing factor to my recovery, as getting frustrated is entirely counter-productive and would simply make matters worse.
Unwittingly, I still took lots of enjoyment from self-testing during recovery - just not for anything related to short-term memory.
Jigsaws: I'd make notes of how many pieces I was putting together in a five minute period. I'd typically think I'd only placed about 6 or 7 pieces, whereas my scribbled note may indicate I'd actually done 30.
Walking Strides: I used to walk a familiar hilly path home after visiting my mother. I'd measure the number of strides I'd taken, say, 500. Each subsequent walk I would lengthen my stride to get the number down.
Holiday Notes: I made notes of all the holidays I had been on in my life, and wrote up bulleted lists of the things I recalled from each one.