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One of the best things I've done for myself recently is to purchase a pocket-sized Moleskine notebook.

They're a little pricey, but the build quality is worth it.

It's also a little hard to get out of the mindset that a $10 pocket journal isn't some sort of sacred object. I initially found myself filtering what I wanted to write down, trying to sort the wheat from the chaff and only commit Very Important Thingsā„¢ to the 'skine's hallowed leaves.

I got over that quickly, though, and it has since become an indispensable tool in my life. It fits perfectly in my hand, perfectly in a pocket. It's everywhere I want to be, allowing me to jot down any fleeting idea I may have for current rumination and later review.

As but one example, there's page 7 of my notebook. On it are jotted down notes from my last visit to Agua Fria National Monument. Roads I want to come back to later. The dead horse cow I encountered across a wash. Modifications to directions I had that are no longer accurate. That's all fairly important stuff.

But then at the bottom of page 7 is what I wrote while in Black Canyon City filling up my tank. A note about how I saw a test mule for the 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee and Chrysler Pacifica. A note to myself that Black Canyon City has a gas station (in addition to delicious pies and a good steakhouse), and the prices there vs. the Mobil station I filled up before leaving home ($2.39 there, $2.29 here). There's no way that'll be important to me years from now, much less a couple months from now. But that's what happened, that's what was on my mind, and that's what was committed to the page.

I filled in the next page tonight, putting down on paper for the first time the numbers I need to have the income I want. They're tangible. For the first time, I can look at that page and see my plan is well within reach. My math is achievable with a little work.

And right below that math I wrote down every bit of work I need to do for the numbers to crunch. I have a plan. There's no more forgetting it or randomly munging details in my head: It's on paper. I can open that notebook up every morning and stare at the plan, know what I still need to accomplish, and know how close I am to achieving my goals.

My brain now inhabits a little black notebook, and it's wonderful.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on February 2, 2007 11:12 PM.

The previous post in this blog was Aw hell naw!.

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