Everyone knows that I love bullet points.
When I say “everyone” I meant everyone who knows me: work collegues, personal friends, family members, friends of friends…you get the picture. The idea of using the bullet points rather than describing something through writing is so much easier, quicker, and to some extent, even makes stronger point. Of course what is better than using bullet points is crossing off those points(tasks) with my beloved thick red pens to put the check marks next to them: COMPLETED!
However, there is one major problem with using bullet points in one area of my life: writing. It is difficult to convey ideas just with points (although I had tried that with my friends in the past which drove them crazy) when I need to describe or explain.
Yesterday, the work meeting got finished earlier than the schedule, I decided to drop by the bookstore, indigo (http://www.chapters.indigo.ca) –another source of love) to kill time before the next meeting to run to. The book, “Extreme Productivity” ( http://bobpozen.com) caught my eyes- the word, “extreme” certainly peaked my interest. Flipping through the Table of Contents, WRITING EFFECTIVELY chapter made me stop and look for that “forever impossible, and quiet spot with one empty chair” in the bookstore. Figuring that there will be lots of secret pointers I need to learn, I took off my coat, sweater, gloves, scarf, hat….(this happens in Toronto weather), and then I took out my pen and notepad. I WAS READY! Ready to learn all the secrets of writing effectively. My acquaintances would be finally free of receiving numerous lines of those bullet points!
I was both happy and surprised that I did not have to read long chapters, or that I took any lengthy notes from the book. In fact, one big idea behind the “writing effectively” is the same as any other projects all of us deal with everyday; in my case, starting with a clear written list of completing an architecture project with projected time frame. Of course, objectives and scheduling change as the projects develop (especially due to financial reasons), however with the clear objectives written (in my case, in bullet points), the projects stay in course to completions. The author, Mr. Pozen states that in order to write effectively, it needs 3 clear steps: 1st,brainstorm, 2nd, categorize, and then the 3rd,OUTLINE. After spending sometime going through these steps, one can start the process of writing.