Archive for the ‘moleskine’ Tag

Think in the Dark

Now that you have your idea notebook and started organizing it with tags, the only thing left is to write in it regularly. Often times I find that thoughts seem to come moments before I fall asleep. I wouldn’t want to get out of my bed, turn on the light, find the notebook and a pen so that I can jot down a quick thought.

Instead I store the notebook and a pen within reach of my bed — on a night stand or on the floor beside it — along with a keychain flashlight. This way if an idea comes to me in the middle of the night I can reach over and jot down whatever is on my mind in just a few seconds.

Tag Your Moleskine Pages

So now that you have your notebook and hopefully started jotting down some thoughts, you should have a few good pages of your streams of consciousness. Keep this up for a few months, and you should have 30 or 40 pages filled with writing, which should start to appear fairly unmanageable. What’s the point of writing all this stuff down if you’ll never be able to wade through it to find the good stuff?

Let’s take a tip from Web 2.0 and tag the pages of the notebook. Write a couple keywords about the contents of the page at the top right of each one. I have a tag for work-related stuff (along with the project names), one for “ideas” and one for “thoughts.” With the addition of tags, the Moleskine becomes a pretty good place to organize your life and mind.

The Boston Globe did a story last year about the “back to paper movement,” where PDA users were quickly moving toward living their lives by a notebook and pen. But the traditional paper tablet is not the only way to go, so I’ll break down some of the high-tech options later this week.

Moleskine Notebooks for Organizing Your Brain

As part of a new series of posts (tag: Thawts) I’ll walkthrough some tips for organizing your thoughts. Very often the best ideas are drawn from day-to-day life. But the problem is that those thoughts come just as quickly as they go. Very rarely do we find the time or incentive to write them down.

In reality jotting those ideas down is the biggest obstacle. I’ve found the best way to organize my ideas is with a pocket sized notebook. I use a Moleskine notebook for work-related notes and for dumping miscellaneous thoughts into. Any notebook will work, but I love the Moleskines for a number of reasons.

It’s small. The pocket notebooks are the ideal size. They fit comfortably in the pockets of my jeans and have plenty of pages to last me months.

Unlined. I have very neat handwriting and an inherited artistic hand, so the lack of lined pages might not be ideal for everyone. (Don’t worry. Moleskine offers both lined and unlined versions.) But I find the blank slate pages are ideal for spilling your brain onto the page. So I can throw a ton of writing down, and then if I need to do a sketch to get a thought across, I can easily do so without worrying about lines obscuring the drawing.

Folder. Moleskines have a little folder in the back that can store business cards, leaflets or whatever you need to hang onto. In essence, these notebooks could organize your entire life. In addition to the folder at the end, Moleskines also have the trademark bookmark (think: Bible fabric bookmark) and a clever little attachment that keeps the book shut even if you have a ton of leaflets in the folder.

Despite how much use I get out of my notebook, I don’t come close to the cult of Moleskine lovers, like Armand Frasco, an artist who runs the Moleskinerie blog.

Be sure to pickup a notebook and start jotting your thoughts down. And stop back tomorrow for a tutorial on keeping your notebook organized.