I have failed. I bought a paper planner calendar.

A few years ago, I jumped on the electronic bandwagon and ditched my Franklin Planner vowing to go paperless for my appointments. I got a sense of freedom knowing that my trusty smart phone would tell me where I need to be and when. It does that. I can write notes and keep my life organized in the cloud.

But I can’t plan there. I need a pen and paper. I need to draw. Make squiggly lines. Create lists.

Maybe there is something hard-coded in my brain about the tactile feeling of a writing instrument in my hand and thought generation. I always feel more creative with a pen or pencil in my hand. Even rolling a pen in the palm of my hand helps me problem solve.

I am not a Luddite. I have used project planning tools, idea generating software and mind mapping. I am a big Evernote fan. I have nested in the Google family of integrated products. So, why can’t I think there?

What is it about paper and a pen? Is my tactile need so embedded in my brain that I cannot lure my thoughts out unless my hand is firmly gripping a pen? Am I squeezing mental material from the pencil’s lead?

What I do know is that I haven’t enabled creative neural connections with digital planning. My (mental) connections to pen and paper are burned into my grey matter spanning a fifty plus year time frame. And, with that I am willing to concede defeat and stop forcing a unrewarding pattern on my creative juices.

I will embrace my pen. Pat my paper. And create.