30 Day Brainstorm Challenge Day 2 and I’m ready to rumble, with myself.
Beginning this challenge has lead me to realize what a poor job I do to properly gather my thoughts and ideas. I have to admit, I had come upon this realization for awhile now, but the message was further driven home by a comment Bruno Winck made on my original 30 Day Challenge post, and then Michelle Ockers vlog on Project Management this morning. The universe was trying to tell me something. The nail was then driven home when I started to write this Day 2 post, I had an idea that I wanted to expand upon and I had written it down this morning; but damned if I could find it.
Let me start here – gathering my reading notes has never really been an issue. I read most of my business/L&D related books on my ipad using the the Kindle app. and using these techniques I’m able to access and review my notes – from there they become blog posts, other resources or stored in Evernote. This is a system that works pretty well for me. It’s after this point, my system starts to fall apart. The gathering of creative ideas seems to toss my organizational techniques into the wind.
Pictured below are all the places I seem to keep creative ideas (this does not include the variety the post-its hanging from the many surfaces in my office). These are ideas that hit me in the moment. Ideas that would make great blog posts, session presentations, virtual courses, ideas for my website or Facebook page. Notes EVERYWHERE! Why? Because creative ideas come to me at the oddest times. When I’m driving, or cooking dinner, or playing with the dogs. They never arrive in an organized fashion and hit me when I’m sitting in front of my computer or note pad. UGH.
My first thought was my phone. Of course! I always have my phone with me (who doesn’t anymore…) why don’t I make use of this handy tool for that purpose. So, I went into my Evernote app to begin to set up a “Creative Notes” page. Ya know what? I HAD ONE IN PLACE! Seriously. I must be losing my mind. Now that I have reminded myself of this – it’s my goal to make better use of it. I doubt I’ll get everything there, but the system I’m using to capture ideas and creative thought clearly needs an overhaul. It’s quite possible I have too many tools for this one purpose (ya think?). I usually carry a small moleskin with me, just in case. There is a pad of post-its in my purse, briefcase, computer bag, by each phone…you know – just in case. (My addiction to post-its will have to be addressed at another time.) But it is here, where “one step at a time” will have purpose for me.
When away from my desk, my plan is to use voice notes on my phone to record into Evernote, which will sync to my ipad and then my laptop. (If you have the “Plus plan” but you can still sync to multiple devices with the basic plan – see how here) I’m going to back to an old rule I used to follow in my corporate days. Dedicate 30 minutes, first thing in the morning, to organizing creative thoughts. Not make new thoughts – but organize current ones. I love my Evernote, but it’s kinda gotten out of hand – so part of my 30 minutes is to clean that up too.
As Michelle said in her post – even the littlest things should have a project management plan wrapped around it. Even if it is just me, I need to be the boss of myself. My head at times is a jumble of thoughts, and it’s time to get more serious about how those thoughts are organized. What tools do you use to keep your creative mind in check?
Are you ready to rumble? I am! #LetsDoThis
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