Work You Love
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Work You Love

This Is How to Keep Track of Your Insights

How to Find Your Delightful Passion & Purpose: Work You Love 101 (#19)

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Today, I’d like to encourage you to record your insights.

Related to the last post about noticing what lights you up is today’s prompt of finding some way to record them. 📓

This is important because…

Note-taking helps you keep your insights

Have you ever woken up from a dream that seemed very vivid?😴And the next day, you remember precisely nothing about it anymore?

Insights can be similar to dreams in that regard. They tend to disappear quickly if you don’t record them as they come up.

The solution to that is simple: keep track of your insights. So, how should you do it?

Well, you can…

Go traditional with pen and paper

Advantages of this method:

  • doesn’t depend on having electricity or a charged device,
  • is more “hands-on” than other forms of note-taking,
  • is simpler than digital note-taking (no learning curve with a new app or software),
  • you don’t need to worry about future technical progress making it impossible to access old digital notes you took a decade ago,
  • might be quicker than digital note-taking (you don’t need to open a program or power up an electronic device),
  • probably better in terms of privacy (as long as you don’t live with someone who snoops through your stuff),
  • might be superior in terms of retention of new information,
  • works better during digital breaks than digital note-taking,
  • unlike digital note-taking, the “pen and paper method” has a long, successful track record.

Personally, I prefer this method. I agree with Andrew Merle who states in his article about note-taking habits:

“I find that this method helps me focus and absorb the most important information, even if I sacrifice some speed and efficiency along the way.”

→ As a side note: depending on your goals with note-taking, you might want to get unlined paper. According to a friend of mine, Michelle James of the Center for Creative Emergence, unlined paper helps foster creativity.

Go digital

Advantages of going digital:

  • depending on the chosen method, it is often easier to record long passages digitally than to write them out by hand,
  • if your hand-writing is really bad, it is easier to read typed passages (*coughs* chicken scratch *coughs*),
  • if you type your insights, you can easily search your digital records for a specific keyword,
  • for some things (such as keeping track of song ideas) voice recording is more appropriate than pen and paper, 🎵
  • some people find it easier or more fun to record their voice (rather than writing),
  • if you use an electronic device you already have, digital note-taking is probably more environmentally friendly than using paper (although the situation is not quite as simple as it may look),
  • you can easily backup your notes so that they are safe even if you lose your device and you can also print them out if you want a physical copy,
  • if you record on a device you typically carry around with you anyway (such as a phone), you don’t need to worry about bringing additional items with you.

→ If you would like to explore digital note-taking, you can find a list of apps and software in this article by Bradley Nice here.

With all that being said, let’s move on to…

Taking action

To put this into practice, go through the following process:

  • Take a moment to reflect on your experience with note-taking and what has worked for you in the past
    For instance: “Hmm. So, I’ve tried both forms of taking notes. I tend to be more consistent when I’m using pen and paper. I think my only challenge with that is when I don’t write in one notebook and instead have a bunch of different papers flying around. Then it gets chaotic.”
  • Decide how you’re going to take notes going forward
    You might want to only use digital note-taking, or only pen and paper, or a combination of both depending on the subject area. You can change this later if you like. That said, it would be good to give yourself some time (at least a month) to explore the system you have decided on.
    For instance: “For information that I find online that I want to retain, I will save it all in one Word document. That way, I can simply copy and paste it. I will write down everything else (for instance, my insights or thoughts about something) in my journal.”
  • Decide if there’s something you need to do before getting started
    In order to get started, you might have to buy a journal or download an app.
    For instance: “I already have a journal so I don’t need to buy anything else. But, I can create the Word document now just so I have it for when I find something I want to keep.”

The idea 💡

If you find it hard to connect to your passion and purpose, begin to record your insights about what lights you up. This will help you gather more information on what you feel passionate about.

Depending on what you write down, you can also reap other benefits. For instance, I absolutely love what Jane Harkness wrote here:

“Reading your old journals will allow you to see the world through the eyes of your former self again, to understand exactly who you were and what you were feeling during those days.”

For your note-taking, you can either use a digital device such as your cell phone, or a notebook and pen.

How can you feel better in just 5 minutes right now? And what do you need to pay attention to most when creating work you love?

If you’d like answers to these questions, I invite you to get my free Work You Love Bundle.

It contains my Mini Meditation for Stress-Relief. This will help you get into a more relaxed state in just 5 minutes.

You will also receive my Essential Guide to Work You Love. It explains the 4 key components of work you love.

That way, you know what to pay attention to!

You can get my free Work You Love Bundle here.




Articles about work (purpose, business, productivity), you (self-development), and love (relationships of every kind). Home base:

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Berenike Schriewer, Ph.D.

Berenike Schriewer, Ph.D.

Professional wizard (I mean, coach…) who used to be a lawyer. Global/🇩🇪 citizen in the 🇺🇸. Find purpose, clarity & focus here:

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