You're Probably Missing The Most Important Part Of The Zettelkasten

Ev Chapman
June 10, 2021

When was the last time you just sat and thought.

I’ve always loved the concept of setting time aside to just sit and think. So much of our days are filled up with stuff and we rarely get time to just think through things. But even if you have time, what do you even think about? How do take time to think without your mind wandering off in a million different directions?

You apply constraints

Most people assume the Zettelkasten is just another note-taking system. But actually, it's a framework and playground for our minds to 'think things.' The notes are simply triggers that get our brains fired up and thoughts moving forward.

Here's how I use my Zettelkasten to 'think'

Set aside time to think. If you're not intentional about it you won't do it. I try to spend at least some time each week jumping into my permanent notes.

Wander Through Your Notes. The only intention I have when I sit down is to open my permanent notes and wander around with a soft focus. My mind does the rest, it leads me where it wants to go.

Make connections. Once my brain is firing usually I'll make connections to other notes, re-write some paragraphs and add new ideas and concepts to the notes.

Create Out Of The Notes. It's not long before ideas for essays and blogs are bubbling up to the surface and I get them into the creation hub. The permanent notes I've written become the brain dump for the ideas. Most essays are already half written by that time.

The Zettelkasten creates space for your mind to play around with ideas, make new connections and bring new ideas to life as a result.

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