When Should You Write Things Down?

Don’t keep it all in your head, write it down!

Using the good old pen and paper…Sounds a bit medieval, doesn’t it? In the end, we are living in the golden ages, aren’t we? We don’t have to write anything down. We can ask Alexa or Siri to remind us (Actually, I’m not sure if we can, I don’t use either of them. I’ve just seen several people asking questions to Alexa and Siri).

Last year, I had the chance to work with a very inspiring lady from the United States. She was an exemplar colleague for me. She always did the right thing and said the right words. Another thing she always did was writing everything down. That was her superpower, actually. Ten minutes before she was supposed to leave the office, she would prepare her to-do-list for the next morning. No wonder she got the employer of the month award on many occasions:)

I think, thanks to working with her, I developed my pen and paper skills as well. Well, for starters, I’m using a pen and paper every day. From writing my to-do-lists to writing all the things I’m grateful for that day. From jotting down ideas that flash into my mind to little tasks I’ve accomplished during the day. For the first time in my life, I started throwing away pens because they run out of ink!

Below are the occasions when I prefer putting my thoughts on paper:

  1. When ideas flash into my mind: These include topics I want to research or write about.
  2. Before company meetings: I need to write down the questions I will ask during the meeting. Otherwise, I won’t remember them. This also helps to keep the meeting agenda on track.
  3. When I’m worried too much about something: This is a trick I’ve learned from reading one of Carnegie’s books. Whenever anxiety starts creeping in, it’s better to write what’s bothering you. It would be better if you can label the emotion as well. Later, put that paper away. You will see that nine times out of ten, what you’ve been afraid of won’t have come true. I hope!
  4. When there is an upcoming project: Let’s imagine you have an upcoming birthday party or a wedding. You may have all these ideas in your head about how your ideal event should look like. It will be almost impossible to keep all the details in your head. And why should you anyway? Put them on paper, and things will happen to the clock.
  5. When I want to show a person I am interested in the topic: Oh, this works wonders. People like it when you start taking notes as they talk. They feel valued and appreciated. Give it a try and see for yourself!

How about you? Are you a pen and paper type of person or do you prefer the latest technology do all the work for you?

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