If you are part of the online planner community, you have most likely heard of this concept. There’s quite a few different names for it (mind sweep, brain dump, ram dump, etc.) but they are all the same thing.
A mind sweep is basically just sitting down and writing down every task and idea that has been swirling around your brain. I can’t remember who originally said it but there is a quote that says “Your brain is for thinking, not for storage.” Unfortunately, most of us use our brain predominately for storage. We try to keep track of all our tasks, ideas, appointments, and any number of other lists all in our heads. Our brains aren’t meant to work that way so we end up forgetting things. Mind sweeps are a great way to get all of that information out of our brains and onto paper where it can be organized and actually useful to us.
Doing a mind sweep is easy. You sit down with a piece of paper (preferably a notebook that is dedicated to mind sweeps) and a pen and write everything that comes to mind. Don’t organize, don’t try writing anything in your planner, don’t check dates and times, just list everything. It’s a good idea to have a list of all of the possible things you could be storing. Looking at the list may trigger something. Here’s one that I copied and am modifying for myself. Once you think that you have written down everything, then you can organize it all.
As a creative and a future entrepreneur, I think this is a very important habit to cultivate. Far too often I have all kinds of things swimming around in my head and I’m not using my mind for creative expression or to advance myself. As I build a business, that will only get worse.
I set up my planner for the week on Sundays so I’m adding a mind sweep to that process. I have an insert in one of my traveler’s notebooks that I’m going to be using for now. Between the mind sweeps and the daily writing meditation, maybe I can keep a clear head.0