James Eaton

March 17, 2021

Daily Blogging Challenge - Day 17 - Truth

Here is a truth that I have been learning (and mostly embracing) this year. You need to keep track of your ideas. 

Ideas are fleeting. I will hear a melody for a song or think of a string of words and in that moment it might feel like I’ll never forget it, but the reality is that if I don’t capture that idea it will spill out of my head and be gone. So, I am creating systems to catch those ideas and hold them until I can process or use them. 

How do I capture ideas? There are two main areas where I try to capture ideas. Audio ideas for music and written ideas for creating content. Let’s break that down. 

Audio ideas - I love using the Voice Memo app on my phone. It’s so easy to just pull out my phone and hit record in Voices Memos and grab an idea. Last week I had an idea for a guitar part, I kept singing it in my head till could get out of the shower and record a quick voice note. I captured that idea for later use and I honestly can’t remember the melody now. If I had not captured that audio, it would be gone forever. 

Written ideas / quick notes - This is where an app called Drafts comes into play. I have extensive note-taking systems but it takes time to get something started. Drafts is a really complex app but it presents you with a blank page every time you open the app. I know that I can click on Drafts and get going. So, when I have an idea or a thought, I open up Drafts and write down those words quickly and move on with my day. 

Each day I open Drafts to see what I wrote and then send that text to the right place. It’s a low friction way to set text aside for later use. Sometimes you don’t know what that text might become. Maybe it’s a text message that becomes and email, or an idea that becomes a blog post. No matter how big or small, Drafts can handle that text and let’s me easily share those words to the right place. 

Our minds are great at having ideas, but they are not great at holding onto all those thoughts over time. The older I become, the less I remember. I know that I am not alone and so instead of fighting to remember, I am just leaning into the truth that my mind is not the best place for ideas to live.