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The problem with having technology at our fingertips is that there’s too much of it. There are countless apps available to log everything from steps to your innermost thoughts. But what its the best way to capture your next great idea?

Everyone works differently, so there is no one way fits all solution. Once you know your documentation style (die-hard digital, traditionalist, combo, etc.) it’s best to whittle down your method to two or less and get in a practice of using them.

Here are some ideas for herding the stream of ideas that come to you, any time of day:


Apple Notes

This is the original notetaking app. Apple has added a lot of great new features since it’s early days (picture add-ins, tables, changeable text, list-making, search feature, etc.) and it remains my go-to app for first jotting down an idea.

Evernote App

For note-taking, Evernote is queen. A supped-up version of Apple’s Note app, you can meticulously organize your late-night thoughts and even turn them into action items, add pictures, use your own handwriting, and add tags.

Adobe Sketch or Autodesk Sketchbook

When words fail, I use Adobe Sketch. From sketching out a web design hat comes to me to getting inspiration from nature, my sketches are another way to transform my ideas into reality.


If you’re an Android user and very visual, this is a great app for mapping out your ideas and seeing how they connect.

Make a recording

This is my favorite method for when an idea comes to me late at night. You know how it goes. You've been awakened from a dream that's left you inspired. Rather than fumble around in the dark for pen and paper or eke out lines of text in your note app, the voice recording feature on your phone will keep you in just enough of a lucid state to fall asleep. Extra points for people who use this app while in the car rather than texting!


Bullet Journal

To call someone who bullet journals an enthusiast is an understatement. For devotees, there is an entire website filled with tips and how-tos on bullet journaling. It’s also the closest to a lasting document you can create to store your ideas. I’d stay that’s a win.

Sticky notes

Stickie notes were invented in the 70s to mark the pages of a church hymnal. Today, these magical pieces of paper are all you need to visually and tangibly organize your thoughts. I once designed an entire website on the wall with stickies, but no pressure.

Small notebook or pad of paper

It doesn’t get more old-school than this. A legal pad or something smaller will do. I once knew a man who carried a tiny composition book in his breast pocket. He had a collection that lined his office wall.


Whether bulletin, chalk or eraser, the beauty of the board is that it takes up no desk space. You can customize with stickies, pins, or even magnets in some cases. Not nearly as permanently as other solutions, but great for visually organizing your thoughts.

The method that works for me, Apple Notes to Bullet Journal, might not work for you. Try a few out and see which ones stick. Combine a couple if you need to. Once you figure out your method and regularly use it, I guarantee that you’ll notice an uptick of productivity and a boost in your flow.

Merriam-Webster defines "relaunch" as: "to go into or to put (something) into motion or operation again." (Emphasis added.) In the context of a career relaunch, the word implies to a return to a prior role or profession - going back to doing what one once did before.

I began my professional life as a lawyer. I left the field of law when I chose to follow my husband overseas and to take on the role of primary caretaker for my kids. When I made those decisions, I believed that there would come a time when I could return to my professional path and pick up almost exactly where I had left off.

That day did arrive, but it was not at all what I had expected. You see, in the years between when I left the law and the time when I could have returned to it, I had changed. I had evolved in ways I could not have previously imagined and found myself a completely different person - equipped with a new set of skills, talents and experiences that were better utilized in a new role.

Ironically, throughout the years that I had been undergoing this incredible transformation, I had been blind to the positive momentum I was building. By clinging to an image of the career that could have been, I was unable to see that from the day that I had left the law, I had been on the path to becoming who I was meant to be.

Maybe this is true for you, too! Maybe you have outgrown that prior role and you shouldn't do again what you did before. What a thought!

Consider that every step you have taken has brought you closer to the here and now. How can you best utilize all of your new skills and experiences to move you forward? How have you changed, grown, evolved?

Who are you today? Does your prior role or title fit the new you?

Yes - go into motion! But not again. Go into motion in a way that reflects and serves the present-day, ever-evolving you.

When asked about my favorite books, this is always one of the first I name. Jeff Goins is an inspiring author who at the age of thirty, took a leap of faith and left a stable job to pursue his dream of becoming a full time writer. He begins the book by noting that we all have a purpose in life, the discovery of which is a very personal journey that requires many unexpected twists and turns along the way. 'The Art of Work' is both a detailed account of the author's path and a fantastic life guide for its readers. Goins playfully notes that once you've revealed your life purpose, the journey begins anew!

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