It is seemingly impossible to remember every single thing that pops in my head throughout the day so I take a lot of notes. The more you think about something, the more you might need to jot down on paper.
I never allow work to limit the process of recording my thoughts because I know how important it is to my future-self. I could be painting a 20 foot long wall and stop the roller dead-center and whip out my note app and speak the thought into memory. If I don’t stop right then and there, the chances of me remembering will vanish by the time I finish rolling the wall. It may get purged from memory in place of other thoughts. I’ll quickly jot down a thought on anything available so not to lose the thought.
Write it down.
This process of capturing thoughts needs to be quick and efficient to ensure whatever it is gets recorded before it vanishes from memory. This is such a crucial thing for me to ensure whatever it was gets attention in the future.
How this process works in simple terms can be demonstrated using 3 words, “Wendy’s Taco Salad.” However the three words popped in our head isn’t important. What’s important is that my future-self gets one. I will likely forget otherwise until maybe I hear it again on the radio. In this case the note serves as a reminder (to do something) albeit not very productive in this case, but nonetheless satisfying.
The Spark File
In addition to using notebooks for reminders, notebooks are used to shape our future-self where a single idea develops over time. We jot down the initial ‘spark idea’ and build from there. This process can happen over the span of a few hours, a day, week, months, or even years.
Just like the Taco Salad, if its important, we need to take appropriate measures to ensure our future-self sees it through. In my next post on this topic, I’ll focus on time travel because this is such a big deal with productivity. Is it possible to be in two places at once? Sure it is and I’ll show you how.