"Does this mean I have to actually 'write it down' or does typing it into a to-do list do the same thing?"
Great question. Especially since we live in the age of the laptop, the smart phone and the app.
I told her I suspected writing it was more effective than typing it if for no other reason than it would take longer, requiring more effort and making a stronger impression on the RAS in the brain. I also said that I'd research it and get her an "official" answer.
Because I'm nothing if not helpful. At least where research is concerned - where laundry is concerned, notsomuch. (I had to admit that just in case my husband or kids are reading this. Perhaps the problem is I rarely put "fold and put away clothes" on my to-do list.)
So here is the official answer: Write it down. With pen, pencil, marker or crayon. Eye-liner would do in a pinch. But use your fingers to grip the instrument and form the letters.
Those of you who glaze over at scientific explanation, university studies or in-depth reasoning can tune out ... just remember that you really should get a pad of paper or journal and write out your goals to maximize your ability to achieve them.
The rest of you - and you nerds know who you are - can check out these articles if you want further info on this. (PS. I'm not insulting you, I'd probably click through and read myself. Especially if it delayed laundry folding.)
- While typing is a more efficient, discarding handwriting might not be such a great idea. Picking up a pencil and a pad of paper to write out your ideas or goals could aid your thought process and learning ability according to the Wall Street Journal.
- For kids, even those raised in the computer age, the pen is mightier than the keyboard according to this research from the University of Washington.
And here's a great example of this priniple in action by my uber smart and productive friend Marybeth Whalen, who made a to-list for the entire summer.
BOTTON LINE: You really want to learn something, remember something, or accomplish something? Try manually writing it down.