Write them down before they’re gone!

I think. A lot. So much so that I’ve got more random notes than you can imagine. Much more than the journal entries I’ve made daily over the past several years. Yup, it’s a dreaded zone I wouldn’t want to visit. At least, not often. Thankfully, technology has enabled me on that front. I’m able to find almost anything with just a few keystrokes (thanks Evernote)!

I’m pretty sure you’re an obsessive notetaker or know someone who is. If you do, you know the value of jotting down your thoughts as and when they come. Don’t you? Just that act of pausing and typing down (writing, perhaps?) is so satisfying. Sure, we haven’t had million-dollar ideas but the ones recorded are far more significant to our lives than those billionaires anyway.

Most people, however, don’t value the importance of writing down your thoughts. Mind you, I’m not talking about journaling as that will require a lot of discipline and willpower. I’m talking about those flash-in-the-pan moments when you’re stuck with an idea, epiphany, a random thought or an intuitive insight that’s worth thinking about deeply. The ones that come and go in a flash too!

I’ve had many of those when I was young and naive. It was stupid of me to not capture them just in time and by the time I got to it — poof! Gone! This may sound funny but it’s true. In fact, I read Jack Canfield address the importance of writing down your answers in his book, The Success Principles. Here’s an excerpt from one of his blog posts:

Whenever you access your intuition, make sure to immediately write down any impressions you receive. Intuitive impressions are often subtle and therefore “evaporate” very quickly, so make sure to capture them in writing as soon as possible.

Recent research in neuroscience indicates that an intuitive insight – or any new idea – not captured within 37 seconds is likely never to be recalled. And in 7 minutes, it’s gone forever.

So make sure you always have your smartphone or memo pad with you so you can record any intuitive insights or ideas that emerge.

Write Down Your Answers, Jack Canfield

I had a similar intuitive insight (worth quite a handsome amount of money, if I say so myself!) a couple of hours back when I was on a call with a coaching client. Thankfully, I was just about to wrap it up else it would have been not only embarrassing but a massive disservice to the client’s time. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a pen and paper handy. By the time I disconnected, the idea was gone. I might have spent close to 45 minutes trying hard to recall that thought but it was too late.

I guess that’s the reason why they recommend that you keep a pocket notebook and pen nearby, always. If you’ve experienced this several times before, now you know precisely what to do. An Indian cellular company once came with a tagline, “an idea can change your life.” The ads were funny but you and I know that an idea can really transform lives.

Let’s not let them go!

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