Greg Morris

Designer, Pretend Photographer, Dad

The Simplest Path

I have a running joke with JFM about him having about 3 thousand different blogs. It is very much tongue in cheek because it works for him, but the thought of worrying about where a post goes is not something I want to deal with. I’ve written about the freeing feeling of having one blog before, but this path of the least resistance seems to be a universal law to help with almost everything.

There is something to be said about intentional barriers in the way of actions you would like to reduce, but for everything else, the easiest path is the way. As Ryder Carol, the inventor of the bullet journal, put it, “the more apps, the more gaps”. James Clear, writer of Atomic Habits, also defaults to one place to store everything. Otherwise, your system falls down due to the need to remember where you saved it in the first place. Defeating the whole point.

It doesn’t matter where that place is, but having things spread into multiple areas, or constantly moving them, is just a waste of time and effort. When I think about the amount of time I wasted looking at new note-taking, writing and task management apps, I shudder a little. My, and numerous others I see, constant need to look for something ‘better’ costs us dearly.

If truth be told, I could never find one digital place that ticked all my boxes. Instead of remembering the information, I had to remember where I put it. So to cut out all the wasted energy overcoming the resistance in my system, I reverted to perhaps the oldest tool known to man – a writing instrument, and somewhere to use it.

All the resistance is now gone because the only answer is in my notebook. Not only am I not worrying where to put things, but I also know where everything is, I can flick through my notebook and find the note I made with relative ease. My concern over previously being able to search digital notes has dissipated because I remember more of them anyway. The act of writing everything down and being able to read through them at any point means my recall is much higher.

It doesn’t really matter where your place is, but by having one place, you are doing yourself a favour. Reducing your cognitive load and giving yourself the best chance at achieving your desired goal. It might be getting tasks checked off, it might be saving ideas, or it might just be the occasional scribble. Take the right path and choose one with the least resistance. You’ll thank yourself for it.

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