The Benefits of Writing Things Down January 18, 2018 10:45

It’s no secret that we love paper products, from planners to books to cards sent in the mail. But there are many reasons that we’ll choose a paper product over technology for most things. Have you ever thought about why there is such a passion among Planner users? Why receiving snail mail means more than an email? Why you can remember a grocery list that was written down but have to keep referencing your favorite app for your typed list?

Here are just a few benefits of writing things down:

  • You’ve probably heard before that writing things down on paper will help with memory retention, and it’s true. Many studies have been done proving better retention after writing something down - a lot of these specifically look at the differences between writing on paper vs. typing (and the results are no surprise!) Another plus is that writing things down benefits not only your short term memory, but long term and aging memories. See a few studies here and here for more information and science-y stuff.
  • Writing things down allows for more natural creativity. Imagine a fresh sheet of paper, where you can easily branch off of ideas in different directions through graphs, doodles, lists, etc., compared to a standard notes app. There are of course, huge technological advances, and some programs that offer capabilities that closely emulate those achieved on paper - but there is really nothing like paper. The slowing down of having to physically create something instead of pulling from a stock makes you think more and ultimately make better decisions.
  • Taking the time to write things down is more thoughtful. Whether it’s reflecting on your day, working, or writing a letter, the act of writing makes your brain work in a different way. On the other side of that - if you receive a handwritten letter, it inherently has much more meaning than receiving an email, because of the effort made in composing.
  • Planning your day/ week/ month/ party/ etc on paper will help you with organization. For all the above mentioned reasons, your plans will run more smoothly with built in memory-retention and thoughtful decisions after writing them down. I’m not always at the top of my game, but I do stay closer to the top when I take the time to organize by writing.
  • Writing things down allows your brain to rest. We’ve all had that feeling - a great idea or something important to remember, that has to be recorded. Writing that thing down and allowing for expansion then lets your brain rest, knowing that it can be examined further at a later time.

Writing something down on paper can lend significant advantages in many aspects, but of course we are modern women too, and use and appreciate technology. It varies from person to person, but using technology and physically writing on paper in tandem can possibly provide the best flexibility and practicality. Just like seeing a sunset in person is more fulfilling than seeing it on tv, physically writing and using more of your brain is more fulfilling and offers more benefits than typing. We’ll use technology, but we’ll also keep writing more and more.