I am completely obsessed with notetaking.

Even now, as I write my first node in years (coming out of a hiatus), I have everNote open side-by-side with the writeup window. It contains every single note I've taken in the last five years, through three software switches, nine lost paper notebooks, three computers, and a hard drive crash. My notes have always been critically important to me, so I always had a backup.

Every stray thought I have that I might want to access later gets a note. Every important email at work gets dropped in the notefile. When I park my bicycle somewhere out of the ordinary, I take a picture, then send it to my notes. I'm so reliant on my notes, I have an unlimited wireless data plan for my phone so I can search all of my notes at any time.

I am addicted to my notes. I get nervous and uncertain when I do not have some way to access them. I bought a $200 pen that records everything I write just so I can easily upload it to my notes later. (It's much clearer than my scanner.) It honestly feels like any other addiction: I feel shaky and sick when I don't have that safety net of being able to write something down, a constant panic that I'm going to forget something. I become very aware of information drifting out of my head, desperate to not forget anything. Of course, my concerns are a bit silly, as I often go straight to the note I need rather than having to run a search to find eveyrthing; I've obviously remembered the full information and content of the note, I just need the comfort that it's as I wrote it.

I am an information junkie. Data is my drug. I want to have access to everything I ever knew, whenever I might need it. But that brings its own problems. I overload very easily, getting confused and panicked in my futile effort to remember everything. So my notes are my crutch: my spare brain so I can dump those ideas out before they dissolve on their own.

I spent years of my life nervous and panicking that I'd forget something. It was a constant anxiety, a fear because I'd never know what I'd need to know, so I tried to remember everything. So I got a PDA, and started taking notes there, but it had no way to search through them; I'd frantically rummage through hundreds of Pocket Word documents to find the right one. I switched to paper notebooks, which were about equivalent. Then, in college, I finally started taking a computer with me to class, and gave Microsoft OneNote a try, and it was the start of fixing everything- and then I switched to everNote 2, preferring its infinite tape. (It's a much better organization layout for me.) But I found myself wanting the free layout options in OneNote, so I switched back. And then Evernote 3 came out, stabilized, and the temptation of having my notes everywhere was too great, and all my notes are now there.

My notes are my drug, but they are a cure. The anxiety is quenched.