Don’t Try And Remember, Check

by Randy Murray on April 26, 2011

What was I suppose to remember to bring home? Milk, dry-cleaning, leaf bags?

I hate that feeling, standing in the grocery store, racking my brain, trying to remember some key ingredient I know that I’m missing. Or when I’m down in the basement — what was I supposed to bring up, put away, and check on?  And what was that critical project task that I was supposed to do yesterday?

I simply can’t keep track of everything in my head. I’m betting that you can’t either.

It takes me much less energy to simply write down what I’m trying to remember. At the grocery I can check my list. For projects I can look up my to-dos and milestones.

I don’t have to remember to eat. My body tells me that. But I do have to be reminded to exercise. That’s not a natural thing for me to do, so it goes on my calendar with a time, a date, and a chiming bell.

It’s not about growing old. Trying to remember is a faulty system when critical things need to get done. So don’t try. Just find a system you can trust. A 3×5 note card. Whatever software tool that meets your needs. Then trust it.

The only thing you’ll have to remember then is to check your trusted system. You can use all the available brainpower for things that matter. It’s a mental energy version of the Spend Nothing Game. Don’t waste your brain cycles on things that a slip of paper can handle. Save it up to use on actually getting things done.


The Don’t Try And Remember, Check by Randy Murray, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

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