And do you know what happens with all of these ideas in the moment? Nothing. Zip. Nada. Ziltch. I’m not capturing them at all until they come back into my conscious mind.
Nothing. Zip. Nada. Ziltch.
I’m not capturing them at all until they come back into my conscious mind again if I’m lucky enough to have that happen that is!
So, I’m now making a conscious effort to capture ideas as they come into my head by writing them down. I have several coloured post-it notepads on my desk plus various notebooks lying around. I also have a couple of notebooks in my handbag. So you’d think I’m covered….
So with all of these tools, why do I still find it so hard to write things down? Because I forget! Plain and simple, and I’ll bet it’s the same for you. We all have good intentions when it comes to continually doing something, but developing the habit is what is needed to make something become a part of your everyday life.
Developing The Writing Habit
Here are a few tips to help you develop the habit and then we’ll look at how important it really is to capture your wayward thoughts (mine included!).
- Start by making sure you have pen and paper (notebooks, notepads, sticky notes etc) in every room in the house and on every flat surface possible. This helps remind you and makes you aware of your writing tools if you are seeing them all the time!
- Schedule time in your calendar to write the thoughts that are in your head at that time. I recommend first thin in the morning, lunchtime and then before you go to bed. I’ve found that by doing this, I’m at least capturing some thoughts down and the more I’ve done this, the more thoughts have come out that I’d forgotten about.
- Set reminders throughout your day that pop up on your phone or send you an email that reminds you to write things down. I’ve set a recurring reminder for 3 times per day outside of the times I’ve scheduled. A little OTT? Maybe, but I’m trying to develop the habit, remember!
Ok, now we’ve covered off developing the habit – do this for 30 days and it will stick, I guarantee it.
Write Your Ideas Down – It Can Change Your Life
If you stick with it, writing things down can really change your life. Read on to find out what I mean…
#1: Start your day right (write?)
At the beginning of the day, I love getting my first thoughts down, it really clears my head. I use a couple of tools to do this:
The journal app asks me a few questions, like what 3 things am I grateful for, how can today be great and what are my affirmations? I find that this puts me in the right frame of mind to start my day and makes me think about positive things around me.
My ideas journal is just a journal that I pretty much carry with me around the house. I pop it beside my bed at night in case I have any thoughts that wake me up, so I can capture them.
Every morning, while I’m drinking my coffee, I write whatever comes to mind in my ideas journal.
There have been some great ideas for blog posts and future ebooks come out of doing this one thing.
I also capture them all digitally by scanning and uploading to Evernote. This is so I don’t have to worry about losing my ideas journal because it’s digitally saved and backed up.
#2: Deal with emotions
If you’re having a bad day or just have some stuff going on, writing your emotions down really helps to get them out of your head.
I find that this process literally makes me feel like I’ve taken the emotions and enclosed them in my ‘whatever is happening’ journal. I have a few journals for different things 🙂 It helps keep things organised.
If you’re anything like me, you struggle to remember the finer, smaller details about certain situations, so by writing these things down, you have a good record of the past AND you can then refer back to the journal to remember stuff – great for those times when you’re trying to figure out important things like who paid for dinner last time!
This is my daily record journal and it’s completely online. I use an Evernote notebook with stacks split by month and year. I record things that happened in my day and anything that I really need to remember.
#3: Think more, learn more, think bigger
And guess what? The more you write things down, the more opportunity you have to think big. Writing all this stuff down allows your mind to have some space to think of more great things and aim higher.
You can clearly see ideas, which fosters more ideas.
You’ll also be able to see where you need to make changes and where things just aren’t quite working for you.
Since I started writing stuff down, and I mean writing a lot of stuff down, I find I have even more ideas! If I could outsource my idea capturing habit, I would!
So by now, you should see why writing your ideas down is really important. It can change your life and make you grateful for what you have and push you further towards the dreams and goals you’ve set.
Are you ready to try capturing your ideas down? Develop the habit first and then come back here and let me know how you go!