The advice to write down ideas is not just one of those tips you can disregard when trying to make things happen anymore. There is a reason why it's among the first and most repeated techniques motivational speakers give in regards to goal setting and productivity. It has been scientifically proven that writing things down, specifically by hand, actually puts your brain into achievement-mode, setting your body up to be more likely to make that thing happen.
“Writing stimulates a bunch of cells at the base of the brain called the reticular activating system (RAS),” reports LifeHacker.com. “The RAS acts as a filter for everything your brain needs to process, giving more importance to the stuff that you're actively focusing on at the moment –– something that the physical act of writing brings to the forefront.” Read more on TDJakes.com
As a lover of lists of all kinds and moreover, crossing off of items on said lists... it only makes sense to me that there would be some sort of scientific explanation for this greater than a strange obsession with inanimate objects and seemingly mundane tasks. However, the concept of writing down ideas specifically has gained a new importance to me after reading about this scientific evidence.
While common sense tells us that we are more likely to accomplish things we write down because this previously insignificant piece of paper now looms over my head holding me accountable, knowing that my brain can naturally switch on a whole other set of cells to help makes me feel like I've just discovered a new super power I didn't know I had. So why not use this super power for more than remembering everything you need from the store or all of the things I need to pack for my trip?
This "brain science" and my new notebook are inspiring me to write down bigger ideas to see if they get further than just flying around my mind at weird hours of the day and night. I'm dedicating at least one full page of space to each idea to encourage subsequent flushing out of each one as time goes on. Let's see how far this new super power gets me!
- Idea Garden President & Creative Director, Vivian Belzaguy