Business

The Benefits of paper-based list making as part of healthy habits

December 2, 2022

I’m Nelett.
I help heart-led clients and designers show up with style and grace. I am a Minimalist designer, inspired by creativity, a total Magazine, Pizza and water addict. Always striving for wholesome, mindful and soul-led living. 
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I am a list-making person. I have notebooks full of lists. Part of the reason I designed the Designers’ Playbook, a paper-based book, is because there are many Psychological Benefits of Writing By hand. And I believe in having habits that make digital life more manageable. And yes, paper is one of them for me. 


I have done some research. I wanted to find out why it feels so good to make a task list and then tick it off. I feel a sense of relaxation when I do it! Below is the general list I compiled from Psychology websites and articles(they even, in some cases, did brain scans to determine the impact of writing with a pen on paper). Now I have a more profound love for pen and paper! 

  • It slows mental ageing
  • It helps organize your thoughts
  • Writing with a pen helps your deep and critical thinking.
  • It improves memory
  • It boosts creativity
  • It helps you to stay focused better
  • Writing with pen and paper Activates the Brain.
  • It Helps Us Remember & Comprehend.
  • Improves self-expression
  • It keeps the mind sharp.
  • It relieves your stress, depression and anxiety.
  • Writing by hand improves your prioritization skills
  • Writing by hand enhances your focus
  • Helps us remember the information

Making lists by hand

  • It helps us to plan ahead
  • It Reduces the feeling of overwhelm when we feel we have a lot to do
  • new ideas rise to the surface
  • It gives us structure in chaos

Ticking off our to-do list

  • It gives us a sense that we have accomplished.
  • It feels like Miniature goal achievements
  • It Reduces Task Anxiety
  • It makes us feel relaxed at the end of the day.

The brain engages more dynamically when we write something by hand instead of typing it on a keyboard or touching a screen. 

Striving for balance in the digital age we are in is what it is all about. Writing lists, journaling, morning pages or writing down thoughts is one of the healthy habits I like to incorporate in my life. Much like my other habits like Pilates, cooking wholesome foods from scratch, playing with the kids or dogs outside, and getting out in nature because we are made to have and enjoy a full-rounded physical experience.

Bring back writing with pen and paper daily and you will find, that that one small physical movement has wonderful emotional benefits. You will experience what science and life experience have gifted us. 

The Graphic Designers’ Playbook is launching in January 2023. A sidekick to help you in your creative business journey!

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