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“Old School” is a phrase I’m very fond of. My choice in music is very old school. While I do love Imagine Dragons you can’t top Otis Redding, Curtis Mayfield, Sly and the Family Stone or Maze featuring Frankie Beverly . . . in my opinion. I know. Very “Auntie’s Cookout Playlist”. Another way I tend to sway old school is in the way I take notes. I’ve learned that my memory is far more effective when I have written something down by hand. Whether it’s a shopping list or client meeting notes, I opt for pen and paper. I take my iPhone everywhere like most. It’s good to have in a jam, but I thoughtfully pack a small notepad and colored pen everywhere I can.

Here’s why I use a colored pen. Several scientific studies have shown that writing in color impacts the way that memories are formed and stored. In comparison to using plain black ink, colored ink improves what you are able to recall. In my experience this has held true. I’ve found that even if I forget the actual shopping list at home (something I do often) I can usually remember what I’ve written down a lot better than if I’d just said the list out loud. Even more so if I wrote in with a colored pen. This Fast Company article explains how color coding your notes can help you think more efficiently. I think we would all agree that thinking more efficiently is something we could all stand to do. There are some studies that show different colors (warm vs. cool) are better for remembering various things. The study linked here says in it’s conclusion “The choice of colours and the manipulative aspects can, however, influence the extent to which colours can influence human memory performance.” I am still experimenting with my own system of which colors to use in what instance. Thankfully, my quest lead me to find out about Yoobi – while I was looking for colored ink pens at Target. Yoobi is a cool company that has donated school supplies that have helped more than 2 million children since their launch in 2014. Their website says that “Yoobi, pronounced ‘you-be,’ means ‘one for you, one for me.’ For every Yoobi item you purchase, a Yoobi item will be donated to a classroom in need, right here in the U.S.” If you are looking to improve your memory and productivity, pick up some colored pens from Yoobi. Check out their entire line of supplies and how they help communities in need. And if you’re writing yourself a reminder to do it later, remember to use a colored pen.