Paper vs. digital note taking - three benefits of pen and paper

Jerzy Rajkow-Krzywicki
Jerzy Rajkow-Krzywicki
Paper vs. digital note taking - three benefits of pen and paper

Did you know that our mind works differently when you take notes on paper? How to be more creative and fast at making decisions.

Topics from Vlog #23:
  • Why should you take notes on paper using a pen?
  • How to remember more from meetings?
  • How to be fast and more creative at making decisions?
  • Does technology have negative associations?
  • Why today we are use the laptops as a shields?
  • How to show respect and interest to the interlocutor?
  • Social aspect of taking notes on paper

Watch the film:

Your mind works differently when you take notes on paper.

How to take notes and why you should take notes on paper using a pen, even if the person with whom you are at the meeting says that you will receive notes or you will receive a presentation by email later after the meeting. You still should take notes on paper.

I will tell you why. Because there is a method in this madness. The short answer is, your mind works differently when you take notes on paper. If you want to remember more from the meeting, it is wise to take notes on paper, even if you throw them away after the meeting, because you will still remember twice the information compared to if you didn't took those notes in the paper and just listened to the person with whom you are in the room.

Filling a blank page
Photo by Calum MacAulay / Unsplash

If you use your hands to take notes, you will also structure better the information in your head.

If you want to be fast at making decisions, fast at spotting patterns, at spotting, new connections between ideas, if you want to have new ideas, it is better to also use pen and paper in your hand.

And of course, the third and obvious reason is that you could do it on a laptop. You would not benefit from the additional remembering of information and additional connections between the ideas that it would look socially awkward if you just concentrated yourself on typing on the keyboard and not on the person with whom you are in the room.

two people meeting with iphone and ipad
Photo by Alejandro Escamilla / Unsplash

If you use a pen and paper, nobody will feel offended and you take notes, you will rather be considered as interested in the conversation.

You will be considered as if you are focused on what is happening in the room. Basically, it would be positive associations, whereas technology has negative associations and people would feel very offended if you talk to your smartphone in front of them. And even if you explain that it's just for taking notes or no. It would still be socially very, very awkward.

I think that just the benefit of remembering twice the information that you would remember without taking notes on paper. It's worth it. Try it and you will see. But if you don't feel convinced, try it. It's also for the two additional reasons I have mentioned in this vlog.

Do Something Great
Photo by Clark Tibbs / Unsplash

We are all too accustomed today to people that come in to meetings with laptops and then use those laptops as shields, as if sitting in front of a person would be a bad thing.

You have to shield yourself with some kind of a screen. I think that's showing that you are focused and concentrated on what is happening in the meeting and in the room is actually a very, very good communication, nonverbal communication content and also it shows respect to people with whom you are meeting.  

I think there are only positives to that. If you need really to have those notes later and for some reason, you will not be satisfied with what will be sent to you, but instead you prefer your notes. You can still scan them and put them into Evernote or Google Drive and it will be instantly OCR and solve the text and the smelts will be recognized and indexed and those notes will be searchable and voila. So please let me know. What is your experience with taking notes on paper do you agree with those three main reasons I have mentioned.


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