Encoding: Write It Down

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Every day, I pull my digital calendar up and begin writing early in the morning- time blocking the day, a few points of gratitude from the day before, dinner plan for the evening, and the big 3 objectives for the day.

I used to not do this. I would keep everything— calendars, to do lists, journals, etc. digitally and would just type away. But I began noticing a disconnect between my brain, that digital space, my fingers typing the words faster than my brain could communicate into the heart space.

And then I realized this is a thing. It’s neuroscience.

“Encoding is the biological process by which the things we perceive travel to our brain’s hippocampus where they’re analyzed. From there, decisions are made about what gets stored in our long-term memory and, in turn, what gets discarded. Writing improves that encoding process. In other words, when you write it down it has a much greater chance of being remembered.”

You can read more of this article by Forbes here.

I would say we need to take it a step farther— WHAT are we writing down? Writing out fears, mistakes, gratitude, and opportunities can be very helpful. Sometimes I might do that only to rip up the paper and throw it away. But it makes my brain give words to the thoughts in a concise manner.

So write it down…. encode it. Whatever the gap is in your actionables for the day— write it down. There really is something powerful about this process that as young professionals can be day altering.