Write everything down.
Every idea you have that’s worth its salt – no matter the time or situation.
You receive a brief and it’s fantastic. You begin your process, whatever that might be – staring at your creative partner’s shoes a la Luke Sullivan, going outside for fresh air, handstands, etc.
So you wait. And wait.
You leave your office, grab a bite, and…still nothing. You saunter home, wind down, and then proceed to lay awake in bed. The lights are off – literally and figuratively. The TV has died and that book on your nightstand didn’t spark a damn thing.
(That’s why print is dying!)
Then, laser show!
A seemingly perfect creative concept surfaces like a feather from your goose down pillow. Eyes firmly closed, mind at rest, you can sleep easier knowing that your coworkers will be amazed by the witching hour brilliance you’ve just had.
The only problem being:
Ideas before bed are like one-night stands – you’re never really sure if they’re going to be there when you wake up.
I keep a pen and pad everywhere that I spend any amount of time. On my nightstand, the coffee table, in my shirt pocket – sans pocket protector – just so I can scrawl my thoughts in a tattered Moleskine.
Legibility being the major issue, most of my entries resemble a medical prescription written by the guy that invented CAPTCHA.
But that’s okay; I genuinely love tactical note-taking. There is an irreplaceable rush that I feel when a thought hits a piece of parchment. I also enjoy a good dog-eared page because of that particular action’s name.
But that’s just me.
Whatever your fancy, keep it consistent with your habits – be it a Composition or Five Star notebook (College ruled, of course), Field Notes, or Evernote. Just carry something with you to collect all the thoughts that make your day.
Losing a gem in your cavernous brain is tantamount to tying your own shoelaces together. Oh, you wear TOMS? Well, aren’t you a better person. But I digress – and I don’t have anything against you.
In this industry – and in life – we are our ideas.
Make sure you keep a place to stash all of them.