By nature, I am quite forgetful. I have a hard time remembering appointments from memory or remembering to stop by the grocery store because I ran out of toilet paper. I always thought forgetfulness was a weakness and that I just couldn’t remember that much. But it is also a strength.
The function of forgetting
The power is in the function of forgetting. It clears your head so you can have new thoughts. Daydreaming, contemplating and concentrating do not work with a full head. A full head mainly causes stress about things you can’t let go of because you are afraid of forgetting them. A great comparison is your computer’s working memory. When that is almost full, the computer works slowly.
Capturing things so you may forget them
Capturing things in my system creates space to forget things. I trust that if I put it away in automatic to-do list, a good calendar or Evernote that it will be fine. Permission to forget things arises when things are captured. In time management training, I often see the opposite: participants proclaiming that they can (store) a lot in their heads. That works nicely. Until one time when you have had a major burnout and you find out that your brain is not meant to hold on to things, but to let go of things to make room for new things.
Confidence in your own system
At first, it will take some getting used to relying on your own system. This confidence will grow if you work with it seriously. Trying to make half a to-do list will never work. Your subconscious doesn’t trust this. For building your own system, you want to pay attention to:
- A good task manager like Todoist
- A second brain with a digital archive like Evernote
- A good (digital) calendar like Google Calendar
- Capture tools on the go