I can plan like nobody’s business, which is probably why friends always ask me to organize outings for the group. Though there’s nothing wrong with being an effective planner, my problem is that I plan too much. Way too much. I’m the guy that will plan a party, then make plans on planning the menu, then break that down into plans for each item on the menu, and it just goes on and on, until I get to a point where I have so many plans, I need to come up with additional plans to re-organize the previous plans I’ve already made. It’s insane!
The same happens whenever I try to organize ideas in my mind -whether it’s an idea for a promotional and fun website, to a potential business, or something I want to pick up as a weekend hobby, my mind is forever crowded with an innumerable amount of thoughts, ideas, plans, goals, dreams and the like. I’ve come up with a few solutions (more like failed attempts) in the past that have not panned out very well for me.
My first idea was to commit all of my thoughts to a notebook and write them down as they came to me. Terrible idea, because I now have about 4 notebooks
4 letter sized, 100 page notebooks of ideas sitting on my desk that at some point, I will have to sit down and re-read because I don’t exactly remember what’s in them. And those are just the one’s on my desk. I have more oodles more sitting in public storage, awaiting the day I will have enough time to revisit them.
The next great idea was to buy a wall length dry-erase board, and attach photos, documents, napkin notes, and anything related to my ideas, to this whiteboard. It was suppose to serve as a visual aid, to help me separate the more viable and prospective ideas from the junk. That too, was an epic fail because before long, I ended up with enough images and slithers of paper that it covered the board twice over. It was so overcrowded, I had begun attaching clipboards to it as a means of holding together dozens of pages for a single idea.
The third failure, was a voice recorder. It was the same disaster as the notebook idea, only with dozens of micro-tapes stacked neatly on my desk.
At this point I’m about ready to give up and say f**k it, but the ideas just keep coming, and there HAS to be some way of recording and organizing the tangible counterparts of my ideas without it turning it into clutter. I can map out and envision anything within my mind, but only to an extent before I have to start writing things down, drawing schematics and building prototypes. It’s when I get to this stage that I need help with organization because it becomes overwhelmingly too much material to manage.
Before the end of this year I WILL have a solution and system in place to manage my note taking, because I can’t continue like this. It’s absorbing too much of my time. Every second wasted on reviewing old notes, is another second I’m not being productive, which translates to less and less being accomplished. 18 months ago