Everyone working creatively knows this feeling. You’re having ideas at a specific moment, try to keep them in mind for later and they’re gone again before you know it. At least that’s what I experienced a few times in my life. Ideas and inspiration are fleeting concepts, you don’t know when you’re blessed with them. Besides, they often hit you when you’re not expecting them. At other times, you are almost forced to have an idea but the spark won’t come. So I thought, why not share with you my techniques on how to find ideas on the one hand, and keep them for later when you need them?
Keep a Pinterest Board for, well, everything
I have written over and over before that I am totally obsessed with Pinterest. Although this is definitely not going to be a praise about this website, it kinda is again. Because ever since I discovered Pinterest I actually don’t use the usual search engines anymore when I need inspiration and ideas. They simply have everything! Need a recipe? Pinterest! Want to redecorate your home? Pinterest! And I think the great thing is that you usually land on personal blogs when looking for ideas, and supporting blogs is always a good thing.
Well, the truth is, I have learned a lot browsing through all those pictures. It really helps me since I am more a visual person, and even the style of my photos is partly inspired by other posts on Pinterest. Therefore this website is clearly a source for your ideas, and it’s also a huge storage possibility. Like a giant pin board (hence the name). So use it! Whenever I feel uninspired I spend some time there. Always helps!
The classic solution: A notebook
Even when, or maybe because the world is flooded with technological advancement, it feels good to get back to the roots. Although my Amazon Kindle is so practical, I love the smell of a book, the surface feel, the sensation. Same goes with ideas: It just feels good to get things out of your head and onto paper. Besides, working with a piece of paper has the perk of you being able to doodle, draw, sketch and just let out everything you have in your head. Or you can stick in magazine findings and pictures, then equip them with notes. But I don’t need to tell you that, right? This is why I always keep a small enough notebook in my purse, and whenever I have an idea it goes in there. Simple, but brilliant. Here are a few stylish ones for you:
Of course there’s an App for that…
Contrary to my statement above technology is not to be damned when it comes to storing and finding ideas. If you have the opportunity, use it! We’re all surrounded by smartphones, tablets and ultralight laptops, and most of the time we’re using at least one of those three. So why not use them to our advantage in this case? I usually work with the basic “Notes” app on my iPhone, because you can insert photos as well. However, there a bunch of well-elaborated apps out there that are more than ready to help you out. Here are a few of them:
Whenever you have a task in front of you, the app ‘Todoist’ will help you organise the s** out of it. It’s listing all the steps you have to do to accomplish a task, assign a priority level to it or schedule it for a specific date. So whenever inspiration and ideas hit you, this app will help you plan everything to get that DIY/chapter/project done! Get it here.
Feedly includes an RSS reader allowing you to organise everything you read online. This way you don’t have to travel to each site for valuable content, but have everything in one place. The interface is very simple, and you can easily save and share inspirational articles. Get it here.
‘Pocket’ is really a small pocket in your mobile phone, allowing you to store everything you find on the internet and save it for later. A friend sent you a video and you’re at work? Store it with ‘Pocket’ and check it out later. Get it here.
‘SimpleMind’ is for those who like to work in a visual way, especially when working creatively. Whenever you want map out an idea and connect it to other ideas, this app will help you visualise it. Get it here.
This app even goes a step further when it comes to ideas. It’s a professional grade drawing app for creating and capturing inspiration, and above all clear your head. Sketching something always helps, believe me! Even if it’s just stick figures. Get it here.
What’s your greatest source of inspiration and how do you store ideas?