I’m probably ADHD if I believed in such a thing. I’d say I’m easily distracted, but that doesn’t really fully explain what happens to me. My mind moves at a speed that my hands and body can’t keep up with. If an idea pops into my head, I have but few prime minutes to write it down before it’s gone, replaced by something else. The something else is usually completely banal and ordinary – normal life, but it distracts me enough to lose the thought completely. I have a notepad next to my bed, but honestly, that’s not where the issue is. It’s like my brain KNOWS when I’m disarmed and uses that time to unleash new ideas, knowing that they will be fleeting and that I will be unable to fully capture them. The other huge issue I have is with distractions. Since I’m often trying to work and fit in the ideas and writing between work, things like emails and phone calls interrupt the flow.
So how does one deal with these issues? I can tell you, it’s a struggle for me. I get up early and write every morning. Ideally, I’d get two hours, but if I’m being honest, and I’d like to be completely honest here, I’m happy with 30 minutes that produces an idea for a single blog post. Since I’m striving to post once per day, that means I’m consuming one idea per day as well. It was great at the beginning because I had 5-6 posts queued up and ready to go. But now, on day 16? Well, I’m digging deep and pulling ideas from anywhere. And that’s where this post came from. Over the past two weeks, I’ve lost at least two great ideas for posts because I didn’t have a way to quickly capture them.
I’ve been so frustrated by this, that I even started looking into digital recorders that can be used in the shower – even inventing one, if they didn’t already exist. It turns out that they do, indeed, already exist, but they are quite expensive as they are built for doctors doing transcriptions – mostly autopsies. So I have that in common with my local coroner, which is nice.
So with no real plan to capture my ideas anywhere, here I am, admitting this fear and flaw. I do have small moleskin notebooks, and my cell phone has at least three apps that can be used to capture voice notes or written notes. Again, the ideas happen when both of those are either not in my possession, or not valid for use. For example, when I’m in the shower. I think this is happening more because I am forcing myself to come up with more and more ideas daily to fill the need for posts. I’d love to hear from fellow creatives on how they are capturing ideas in less than ideal environments.