Virtual Idea Buckets – Skate across America Day 47

November 19th, 2010



Total Distance for today: 0 miles
Total Distance for Tour: approx. 377 miles
LOCATION: Richmond, VA
STATUS: Preparing for some talks at high schools in Richmond and calling ahead to Raleigh, NC

Skate Update

It appears likely that I’ll be moving on toward Raleigh very soon here, but it depends on what happens with a couple schools I’m waiting to hear back from here in Richmond. It’s going to be a pretty long skate into Raleigh, BTW. I think it’s close to 180 miles from here, but it will be a good way to stretch my legs a bit. 😉

Virtual Idea Buckets

I want to share a clever little idea that a friend of mine told me a few months back. I was complaining that cool ideas come to me so quickly and randomly that I feel the only way to get anything accomplished is to let most of them go completely. It’s a bit sickening, but what can you do? Make an “idea bucket,” that’s what!


The old fashioned way to do this was to tote around a notebook and make sure to capture every idea in it. But let’s be honest: Who has the discipline to always keep something like this on them, and who really wants to? Worse: Even if you capture 1000 amazing ideas in a notebook, it can be pretty difficult to find a specific idea a year later. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to find any old idea with just a hint of what it was related to? Well, here’s how to setup the perfect tool in 4 simple steps:


Making a Modern “Idea Bucket” in 4 Steps

1. Create a new gmail account.

2. Name it something like “mistysideabucket123@gmail.com.”

3. Grab your cell phone and save the email address you just created as a new contact in your phone book.

4. Whenever you have a good idea but don’t have the time to pursue it at the moment, shoot a text with a short summary of it to the idea bucket.


Benefits over a Notebook

1. You can send an idea to the idea bucket at any point as long as you have a working cell phone or internet to email from.

2. You can stay focused on the tasks at hand without being afraid of losing your great ideas.

3. You can use Gmail’s search feature to find any idea, no matter how old, so long as you remember a single keyword associated with the idea.

4. Most phones allow you to take pictures and record audio/video. These files can usually be sent as a multi-media message (MMS). So you can actually record short little blips and take pictures of ideas! Add some keywords to the text, and you’re set!


I would recommend setting up the Gmail account to forward to your primary email as well, just in case something was to happen to your “idea bucket” account. If you want, you can even setup a filter, so all emails coming from your “idea bucket” end up in one place. That will allow you to have a look at all of your ideas right from your main email.


There you have it: a perfect way to capture your creative ideas right as they come and easily find them later. Happy creating!

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