Can a Good Pen Make You More Productive?

Get My Pen! – Read below for a FREE chance to WIN my favorite pen.  I will give one away next Monday!

All of us need a pen.  Even if most of your time management is done via electronics, you probably still need one to take notes.

I have yet to meet anyone who is 100% paperless.

You need a pen, if for nothing else, to sign things.  It always seems to impress people when you use your own pen to sign forms or receipts.

So, what is your favorite pen?

A Good Pen Can Lead to Productivity

How can a pen make you more productive?

Just like keeping your todo list visible, having a pen handy also leads to action.  Having it ready when you need to write something down or just having it in your hand can lead to creativity.

Here are just a few ways that “A Good Pen Can Make You More Productive”

  • You Use Tools You Enjoy – I often say, “Use tools you’ll use.”  In other words, the more you enjoy the tools, the more likely you are to use them on a regular basis.
  • More Likely To Take Notes – When you have a pen at hand, you are more likely to write things down.  Try it in your next meeting.  By having my favorite pen ready, I find I take almost double the amount of notes.
  • You Are More Likely to Brainstorm/Doodle – I am not talking about drawing pictures during meetings!  But, I am referring to the fact, that with a good pen, you will be more likely to scribble down ideas, even passing thoughts.  Some of the best ideas are developed through random jottings or drawings.  Let your pen become a source of new ideas and solutions.
  • Good Pens Write Well – Good pens just write… better!  If you have ever had a favorite pen, you know the difference between a good and bad pen.  This again makes it more likely that you will want to capture that great idea!

What is Your Pen?

Pens are wonderful because it all comes down to personal preference.

Some people like expensive pens.  Others prefer cheap pens.

Some like gel ink.  Some like felt tips.

My current pen of choice is by Caran D’Ache.  (See picture above.)  It is not an expensive pen, probably about $20.

The one I have now is an obnoxious bright green.  To me, it signifies “Go!” or “Action!”  The color also makes it very hard for one of my colleagues to make off with it, since it stands out.

Caran D’Ache pens come with a wonderful ink cartridge.  However, I prefer gel ink, so I swap it out with a blue Parker Gel refill.  Just my preference.

Get My Pen!

I want to hear what your favorite pen is!

Some like fountain pens.  Some like Pilot Gel pens.  Whatever your favorite, please share below.

I am also giving you a chance to WIN my pen.  Well, not my green pen.  But, the exact same Caran D’Ache pen in a nice professional gray color.  I will even include a Parker Gel refill, so you can get the same experience that I like.

All you have to do is share your favorite pen type in the comments.  Or if you don’t have one, simply leave a comment below asking to be entered in the contest.

Next Monday, I will draw at random.  Best wishes and happy writing!

What is your favorite pen?  Does it make you more productive?

Share below to be entered in the drawing to WIN my pen!

Related Posts:

Where Do You Take Your Notes?

Why You Should Try a Moleskine Notebook

Check out my new Kindle eBooks: I have just released two new "Best of TMN" eBooks via Amazon. If you are new to TMN or want a compilation of some of my best TMN writings, then please check out my new ebooks on Amazon by clicking here.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Perry

    I like the Cross Tech3 because it is slim but still has a pencil, blue or black ink, and red ink – all in one body.

  • http://randymurrayonline.com/ Randy Murray

    My favorite is the Fischer Space pen, bullet style. Tough, writes anywhere, small enough to drop into a pants pocket.

  • http://twitter.com/sph33r Bradley Haase

    My favorite work pen is a Pilot G2 Limited hacked with a Uniball 207 insert. The Uniball writes much smoother than the G2 but the G2 Limited body is very nice to hold and use.

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Bradley, love that you have “hacked” your pen.

      As I mentioned above, I too take the stock cartridge out of my pen. I prefer the Parker gel inserts. Write wonderfully.

  • http://twitter.com/caelyxsec Simon Brown

    Currently, I’m really enjoying using a Lamy 200 multi-pen at work, and a Lamy Pico on weekends.
    But my favourite is a Montblanc 146.

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Ah… The Lamy Pico! I had one of those once upon a time… :)

  • http://twitter.com/giannini2003 Nina ♥

    I would like to be entered in the contest. I don’t know if I have a favorite pen, but I think I’ll like yours :)

  • Anonymous

    My favorite pen is Pilot’s dr grip.
    It’s the best pen ever
    Quality of pens made in japan are high!

  • Scot Jennifer

    I usually use a black fine point papermate for note taking and doodle thoughts but always an ultra fine tip Sharpie in red or black with final instructions on papers to be filed or saved back.

  • http://twitter.com/mikepetrucci Mike Petrucci

    Wow, I’d love to have your pen! That thing looks pretty sweet! I’ve always enjoyed the space pens because they are very durable and write in all conditions and are still super smooth, especially for a ball point.

  • Yvotchka

    Great post! I agree that having a pen that you enjoy using & that works for you definitely contributes to productivity. I have two favorite pens: one is a Montblanc that I inherited when my mother passed. It is gorgeous, classy and reminds me of her every time I use it. However, I don’t bring it to the office – I leave it at home to journal with (in my Moleskine : ). My favorite “take everywhere” pen is a Pentel Energel Needletip. Writes smooth, great gel ink, comfortable in the hand, and not too spendy if I loose one!

  • lindsey

    my favorite pen is the uni ball signo 207. you can start writing with a click and the ink is always fluid and smooth. no cap to remove=faster action! they come in 8 different colors too so i can be quick in orange or plum, not just black or blue.

  • Karen

    My favorites are the Sharpie pens. They are fine point, come in a ton of colors and don’t bleed through paper. Love them!

  • Pwallace11

    I definitely like the sharpie retractable pens. However, it sometimes has issues with the tip being pushed in if you write too hard, which I sometimes do.

  • http://twitter.com/bam294 BethAnn Stanwood

    The Caran d Ache Varius Chinablue Rollerball Pen. Lightweight (for women) and for close to $800 you better not be doodling when you use it! Oh, and on the cheap gel roller is Bic Ai, no clumps, not too big and blue ink – a necessity!

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      BethAnn,
      Wow, sounds like a beautful pen. I would be nervous even carrying that around! :)

  • Janeya

    I really love Zebra F-402 pens, which were first introduced to me by my husband. However, when I take notes in class (I’m a college student), I like to use Pentel WOW! ballpoint pens in all the colors I can find. They are really cheap and write really well, all while making note-taking a little more fun (which really makes a difference near the end of the quarter).

  • Robertgremillion

    I like the Pilot Vball BG 05.

  • Terry Shipman

    I use the Fisher Bullet pen. Writes well and small enough to be with me all the time. Important thing for me to have my pen available so I can take notes whenever needed.

  • http://www.plannerisms.com Laurie

    I completely agree! ;) Having tools you enjoy using encourages you to use them. And when they are tools you use all day every day, they should definitely be enjoyable to use!

    I like Sakura Micron pens because they are archival and come in lots of colors. My out-and-about pen is usually a Bic 4-color pen, for the convenience of being able to color-code on the go. My favorite pen must be the Papermate ballpoint refillable with the Lubriglide cartridge, because I have 4 that I’ve been using (and refilling) for 25 years! They are my go-to pen for writing.

    I’ve never tried your pen before! I hope I win one to get your favorite pen experience. :)

  • Stephen

    My favorite is the Lamy Vista with an extra fine nib. It is a great pen and fun to use. Thanks for the chance to win.

  • Ken

    I have two favorite pens: One is a Trekker version of the Fisher Space Pen. It’s kept on a my carabiner clip with my keys. It’s great on the go and I always have it handy. I’ve replaced the medium tip with a fine tip, since it seems to write smoother, glob less and fits with my handwriting. For everything else I just use a Pilot G-2 7 mm pen. I’m the only one at work that uses them, so finding mine is easy.

  • Alecia

    I fluctuate between the Uni-ball micro (.5 mm) and the Pilot G-knock (.7 mm) (hey, it’s environmentally friendly – 81.5% recycled content). Nothing fancy here! As an aside, I’ve had the same Pentel P205 .5 mm drafting pencil for over 20 years. My mom would be proud.

  • Tommes S.

    My overall favourite is a rotring 600 pen, which has been travelling around the world with me in the last 16 years. Though it begins to look like that, I love it very much and use it every day ;-)

  • http://www.whitewolfstudioart.com Whitewolf Studio (Donna)

    On my at work desk, Uni-Ball Signo 207 (all colors) retractable, in my pocket book, Sharpie (the pen) retractable, on my art table, Microns to splash watercolor on. I hate when I’ve misplaced “my pen”. Your pen sounds delightful!

  • http://twitter.com/d_a_keldsen David A. Keldsen/Dak

    Three: for a dress shirt, Lamy Vista fine point or Lamy Al-star (alumimum, same style), with a refillable adapter, not cartridges.

    For “Do you have a pen?” “Yes.” always have a pen preparedness, the Fisher Space Pen (Bullet, with clip, carried in a leather card case, with business cards and blank cards to make notes on, and

    For driving, where there’s never a pen handy, on my keychain, the Fisher Trekker.

    Thanks for the blog, keep up the good work!

    Best,
    Dak
    http://dakworks.wordpress.com

  • http://daytimer.wordpress.com Jeff@Daytimer

    Zebra Expandz pen — always in my pocket, everywhere I go. Slides shut nicely and securely, no caps to worry about, and it’s compact.

  • http://www.noxbox.blogspot.com Johan Murillo

    Right now my fav pen is Pilot Suger Grip M (Ballpoint). However my current taking notes / ideas designing tool is a Faber-Castell Grip Plus 0.7mm. I love it’s size, how it feels in your hands and the it’s eraser. I would love to try your pen with the Parker Gel Ink!

  • http://twitter.com/onigiri75 OnigiriSama

    First, I would like to say how glad I am I found your blog, you have very good ideas!

    As for my favourite pen, it depends, as I love fountain pens, mechanical pencils, gel rollers, felt tips…but I dislike the ballpoint pens.
    These are my top favourite:
    FP: currently my Lamy Vista with blue ink. I also have the Safari, but it doesn’t feel as soft as the Vista…
    Gel: currently I have two favourites; the Pilot G-Tec-C4 in purple, and a roller I got at Muji (purple as well). The tip in both pens is quite thin and precise, and the ink flows consistently.
    Mechanical Pencil: it’s gotta be the one I’ve been using since high school (over 10 years ago!). it is a black Pentel P205 0.5 mm. Time has made its clip disappear, but it still had the cap for the eraser and it works like new!

    And the ONLY ballpoint I ever use is the Pilot BP-S Fine. And I only use it with my travel planner.

    Thank you for the chance to win your pen!!!

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Thanks, for the kind note. Glad you found my site. :)

      I am a big fan of the Pilot G-2′s. Will have to check out the others that you use.

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Congrats! You won the drawing to win my pen!

      I will be sending you the gray Caran D’Ache pen that matches mine. :)

  • http://www.bobsoltys.com BlkWhiteFilmPix

    Mont Blanc fountain pen – that I’ve “hacked” with Waterman refills, a Mont Blanc rollerball pen, and for the weekend, a Waterman rollerball pen received as a gift.

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Isn’t it strange that many of us have “hacked” our expensive pens with cheaper (and better) ink refills?

  • http://solutions4living.blogspot.com/ TyAnn Robinson

    I love the Sharpie Fine Point pen! It doesn’t blob, always looks crisp and doesn’t bleed. If you lose it, it doesn’t cost a fortune to replace, and it is unique enough that everyone at the office knows it is mine.

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Love Sharpie markers… haven’t fallen in love with their pens, yet.

      A little too fine for me, and most of their colors seem very light to me.

  • Olivier Esclauze

    Pilot G-2 7 mm pen of course whatelse?
    Don’t try it, it’ll change your mind.

  • http://twitter.com/gsuveg Gabor SUVEG

    i have Lamy Safari pen with black and blue in , i love it for writing, i can write when i want. its working.
    for sketching i use a very old Koh-i-noor versatil with 2mm graphite. i dont realy use 0.5 pencils.

  • http://www.coachbru.com CoachBru

    Staples Gel Mini Pens (sold by the dozen)
    Gel pens rock, these are about 3″ long and fit/clip to any pocket or bag making always carrying a pen easy. Which reinforces your points 1-4 on productivity.

  • http://twitter.com/davebaldwin Dave Baldwin

    So, I don’t have a favorite pen, but a favorite kind of pen. The Pentel EnerGel liquid Gel Ink Pen is my favorite one to use. It has a 0.7 mm metal tip. They come in multi colors and I buy them that way as well. I use mainly black and blue. Now here’s where it gets a bit weird. When one of them runs out of ink I don’t throw them away. I put them in my top right hand drawer of my office desk. It’s getting rather full.
    I love the way the pen writes. You are right if you like a pen you’ll use it more often It has an even flow off the tip and it doesn’t bleed through the page. They look okay clipped to your shirt (I don’t wear my pens in the pocket, but clipped in the middle where the shirt is buttoned).
    I guess you hit a chord with me. We have a 36 year old daughter who got her pen addiction from me. At any time she can tell you how many pens she has in her purse and it’s always over 20.
    Thanks so much for the post!
    Blessings,
    Dave

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Hmmm… so, what are you “saving” all those empties for? :)

      I have not tried the Pentel EnerGel. Will have to check it out.

      Thanks for sharing!

  • Deb Howard Greenleaf

    Please enter me in the contest! To be honest, I use pencils and not pens. Mechanical pencils are everywhere in my life … in the car, at my desk, in my purse and usually one is behind my ear. Especially with my dayplanner, I can’t imagine not being able to erase and shuffle around appointments!

  • Rpalanji

    Craig, this is my favorite subject – PENS.. How lame can I get. I use and test pens any chance I get. Ok. I haven’t gone off to purchase any of the expensive brands (I can dream).

    Currently, I use Zebra, Watertman and my favorite, Monte Blanc (that someone gave to me). I really have to check out the Caran D’Ache you posted. Thanks again.

  • M2neff

    Favorite pen? Never even considered it before. I usually use whatever pen is around, and now I feel like I’ve missed out. Do you have several of your favorite pens? One at home, one you carry around? Or just one that you take good care of? I’m going to be more aware of pen choice now.

  • Anonymous

    I like the Fisher space pen and the Pilot G2 .05′s Would love to try out your pen if I win!

  • Nickstr

    I have a 30 year old Cross pen I like. I also have a Waterman that is cool to use!

  • Anze

    I can hardly do anything meaningful without my Pilot G-2 7 mm :) i even have a spare one in the bathroom xD

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Pilot G-2′s are the standard for gel pens. Love them!

  • http://twitter.com/graf808 Rob G.

    I love a nice fountain pen, but they’re not too practical where I work currently. I currently favor the Pilot G-2′s for day-to-day stuff. I’ve also found some unexpectedly good pens in the Japanese dollar stores.

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      I use to love fountain pens. Love the “flow.”

      But, they can be messy for work and travel. With the new gel pens, I can get almost the same smooth effect.

  • Sheenfischer

    Back in the late 80′s, I was just getting into sales. I sold stainless steel pots and pans door to door. One month I won a sales award – it was a Parker Jotter stainless steel pen. To this day, it is the only pen I keep in my shirt pocket. I also have a spare in my briefcase at all times. I order them 10 at a time on ebay and it literally ruins my day if I lose or misplace one. When at my desk, I actually use a different, cheaper pen that writes very nicely so that I don’t drain the ink cartridge on my stainless steel jotter too rapidly. Wow, should I even post this? I’m a pen freak…LOL!

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com Craig Jarrow

      Love it! Sounds like you have found “your” pen.

      I have been known to order pens in bulk too. :)

  • http://twitter.com/clogteachr Sam Gill

    I don’t really have a favorite pen. I use mostly a mechanical pencil to make my notes at work. I have been on search for a great pen for years … cannot seem to find one.

  • http://twitter.com/clogteachr Sam Gill

    I don’t really have a favorite pen. I use mostly a mechanical pencil to make my notes at work. I have been on search for a great pen for years … cannot seem to find one.

  • Christian Marxen

    My pen means the world to me! It also makes me SO much more productive. Just holding it in my hand somehow gives this weird satisfaction so I just want to use it more.

    It’s a Fisher Space Pen Black Titanium. Seriously, you NEED a space pen, and in my opinion this is just the coolest one. And as a bonus it gives you a great story to tell, with it’s relation to NASA and the technology behind it. And so many people I know have been amazed and asking about it whenever they’ve seen it or tried it. It’s just C-O-O-L. And great to write with. Especially incase you go diving and need to take notes there…

    So even if you have other pens. Get yourself a Space Pen. Even if you only want to use it for impressing girls :)

  • Lisa

    My favorite pen is the uni ball vision elite. I like the flow of the gel pen as well as precision of the fine tip. The size of the pen is perfect for my hand. Easy to find when I need a replacement.

  • Jenn Vitale

    I don’t have a favorite pen to write with, but I do have a favorite ink! Purple ink seems to entice me to write. As long as the pen doesn’t blot the ink as I’m writing, then I’m all good!

    I do love gel pens for my calendar though. I put holidays in one color, birthdays & anniversaries in another, appointments, work meetings & deadlines, and my daughter’s school events all have their own colors too. I love that the color coding allows me to capture a glance at whats coming up the following week without actually having to stop to read it if I’m in a hurry.

  • Forrest

    A favourite pen has to fit your hand just so. I have a beautiful pen that is so smooth I have trouble gripping it. It’s not my favourite. I have a Cross thin standard model in chrome. It also slips in my hand as I write. It is also not my favourite. Then I have a Cross standard model gold filled that was run-over by a car which left a flat spot. It always writes a strong black line and never slips. It’s close to being my favourite. Then I have a succession of Bic Klicks with advertising on them. They always write well, fit my hand well, and when they get lost, I do not mourn their passing. They are my favourites.

  • Sharon Druker

    I love fountain pens except when the ink cartridge won’t draw (total frustration!). Basically anything that writes smoothly works for me (gel is fine but doesn’t have the same experience as real ink). I dont’t like ballpoints because they skip, felt tips tend to get splotchy and I hate pencils altogether. I have never heard of these pens but would love to win one so I can give it a spin!

  • http://TheAnywhereOffice.com/ Phil Montero

    I love the good old ball point pen – but I must admit like one that has some girth and weight to it. I had one I totally loved (Parker I think) but somehow it vanished in my house and I still haven’t found it. Nothing like writing with a pen you love!!

  • JD

    I like my Sharpies, fine point and medium point. I have them in all colors and within reach on my desktop. I use them to create colorful to-do lists and to sketch ideas.

  • chywriter

    I wish I could find a favorite pen. I love the Pentel Wow pen. I like the flat 3 sided feel of the Pentel Wow, very comfortable to hold. As for flow and ink. The Paper Mate Profile is astounding, but it doesn’t come in anything less than a 1.4mm line, way to big for some of the detailed writing I have to do. It’s great for a tablet, but beyond that…. It’s hard for me to pick one wonderful pen and not lose it in a week. I like to have multiple pens everywhere that all work the same. Then whenever I pick up one of my dozen or so writing tablets, I’m not running around wondering where my perfect pen went.