Thursday, January 10, 2013

10. My Memory Has Just Been Sold #JanBlogaDay

Oddly enough, a quick check shows that this is the second time I've used this as a blog title. I thought I remembered that. For some reason, that original post has been an enduring post over the years. Oddly, it's not showing on my list of top blog posts even though it has enough views to be in all time third place, after a work-related post about Facebook's "email killer" and my instructions on how to fix a TE error on on LG washing machine. My poor daughter, every time that song starts, she exclaims something like "No, daddy, don't!" because we always move on to the next song. This would probably be on her list of reasons she wishes she were older, so she could hear that song.

My memory isn't great. I think it was David Allen who said "Brains are for thinking, not storing stuff." I have taken that to heart. While I do end remembering a lot of stuff, whenever possible, I try to capture stuff... Evernote, Remember the Milk, our corporate wiki... It's much easier to remember where to look for something when I need it again than it is to try to remember the thing itself. Plus, then I can go back and read something I wrote as if it's something I'm learning for the first time. Sometimes I marvel army own writing, other times I cringe and hope no one's looked at it besides me.

Come to think of it, I do remember a lot of stuff. But maybe I feel like I don't have a great memory because I don't necessarily remember the right stuff. I think that happens especially when I'm not interested/engaged with the topic, or I'm distracted. Sometimes at work I have to compensate with note-taking and there's one all-day quarterly meeting that is so interesting that I typically find myself as one of only two people without a laptop (and the other guy has an assistant taking notes). Often I'll take some longhand notes, but those are usually meetings that can't be discussed with too broad an audience so the notes are only necessary for the planning that comes out of it, or if there are random observations I want to get out of it. Also keeps me from politicking with others around the table or diving back into regular work and getting distracted.

My mom always said if it was important, it would come back. I've learned that's not always true and so that's why I try to always write down stuff that seems important. Forgetting can seem like a handy excuse, but it ends up being exasperating. Our CEO said something neat and profound in Chapel yesterday I wanted to share in my weekly summary email (goes to my team and a few others and I know not everyone made it yesterday) and I thought it would encourage my readers but I didn't write it down and now can't remember it.

Maybe it'll come back to me.

Day 10 of January Blog a Day.

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