Let’s face it – your mind is lousy at remembering things. Some days it seems that we can only remember one thing at a time. Try to juggle two items in your head and both fall out! Thankfully, technology has created a wide range of tools to offload the responsibility of remembering things.
At the low tech end is the humble sticky note. Once something crosses your mind, immediately write it down on the note. This has to be done quickly, as the next shiny object that passes in front of your eyes can cause this thought to be forgotten. The catch with this system is in the management of the physical notes. Lose the sticky note and the thought it captured is gone. For this system to work, the note must go straight into your inbox at the first opportunity for later processing.
At the other end of the scale are the apps on your smart phone. I regularly use the iPhone’s reminder app to capture thoughts and commitments in real time. A wonderful feature of the reminder app is the ability to set an alarm for a time or place in order to resurface the note. For example, when I need to remember to bring in a document from home for work, I’ll place a reminder in the app and set an alarm to trigger that evening. Without fail I’ll notice the pop-up reminder, prompting me to place the document in my bag to bring in to work the following day.
So do yourself a favor and stop trying to remember things. Set up a simple reminder system and let the technology work for you.