In a world of digital consumerism, the art of note taking still reigns supreme.
For me, a fresh notebook is a sensory experience like nothing else. I love hearing the bind crack as I peel the notebook open. I love the crisp smell of clean paper. I love running my hands over the soft, unmarked pages.
Filling my notebook with thoughts, things to do, notes and plans brings me so much joy. It enables me to stay engaged and focused and it inspires constructive and creative thinking whist putting pen to paper. It ensures I have a physical place to keep my thoughts in a central location and stops me forgetting key insights may have forgotten.
And thankfully, the art note taking is having a resurgence. So how can you leave the digital world behind and fall in love with note taking again? Here’s how:
FIND A NOTEBOOK
The first thing you need to do is find a notebook that works well for you. Here are a few things I look out for when I buy a notebook.
- The quality of the cover. Notebooks can get thrown around quite a bit and I like mine to look fresh all the time, so I like leather covers.
- The stock. I use an ink pen and I don’t like it when I can see my notes seep through the pages. Also, the colour of the paper is important. I avoid bright white paper as it’s not calming for me to use.
- The size of your notebook. You want to find something that fits comfortably in your hands and bag, whilst allowing you freedom to be creative in your thoughts and notetaking. Sometimes really small notetaking can impact how big you think!
- The overall look. In years past, I’ve bought grey, or pink, or green covered notebooks. Unfortunately, they just haven’t suited my minimalist style, they don’t generally go with all of my outfits (yes, making sure my notebook matches my outfits is something I seriously consider), they get dirty and they generally don’t suit my personal brand. Since discovering AOL’s black, minimalist notebooks, I haven’t looked anywhere else.
PAIR YOUR PEN
Anyone who loves the art of note taking, also understands the importance of using the right pen. Note taking should be a joyful experience, so not only should you invest in the right notebook, you should also invest in using the right pen. Full disclosure – I am extremely fussy about the pen I use. I have been using the Uni-Ball Eye Fine Pen since high school and I refuse to use anything else. If I don’t have one of these pens handy, I will honestly find a scrap piece of paper, write down what I need to, then transfer these notes into notebook when I do find my pen again. It might sound crazy but when you use your notebook and pen daily, these finer nuances are really important.
PERSONALISE THE EXPERIENCE
When An Organised Life introduced monogramming, my heart exploded with happiness. Finding the right notebook and pen makes the art of note taking really special; but having your notebook monogrammed with your initials, name or a special date, takes the art of note taking to a whole other level of joy.
THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX
For years I have used An Organised Life’s Weekly Diary and Lined Paper Notebooks. But this year I decided to switch things up. I now use my AOL Weekly Diary as a place to note down places I need to be, and I use my AOL A4 Diary for deadlines and have plenty of space to add other notes, thoughts and plans. Three months in, and it’s the best decision I’ve made.
Words By: Jaharn Quinn from Your Creative Start