Great idea! I’ll write it down

Sometimes someone I meet will have a great idea and I will say so. "Good idea, I’ll write it down". I always add “It was (Albert) Einstein who said: The opposite of forgetting is writing”

One of our shareholders asked me once – what happens to all the notes that you write down?

Well sometimes I do them and sometimes, the idea turns out to be not very hot – but hey, at least I wrote them down. I am in integrity, I said that I will write it down and I did.


But all said, I have to find a better way to handle all these stuff. Writing it down doesn’t really help, it just makes a large list of stuff to do.

Here is how I do it now (bluntly stolen from kanban):
I still write the ideas on a Post-It. But now there is a place on my desk where I can put up to 4 Post-Its. Once there are 4 Post-Its, I cannot add another one. I will have to do one of the ideas to be able to put that new Post-It down. This way I must decide either to do one of the ideas or to discard one. (I can tell the person with the idea, that we won’t be doing it now)

This way leads to action and pushes me to get things done.

  1. Only four? What do I do with the other 73?

    What I do is bang the notes into my phone then transfer them to my ToDo mind map. Keeping it visual with links between tasks helps me a lot. Doesn’t suit everyone, I know.


    (That’s one off the list!)

  2. I know, it is so difficult to just cross out your ideas, but take the top 4, and discard the rest (most are probably out of date anyway).
    One way to discard a task is to setup a meeting with yourself to do the task. (watch out you have to do this with integrity)

    I love the Mind Map, I find it really useful, I still keep up to 4 tasks in the waiting cartridge. (actually most of the time my list is empty – because I dealt with all the ideas.)

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