my updated system for 2023

This is an iterative note that’s part of my digital ecosystem and thus always evolving

While Notion has been my daily driver for the last year+ at work and increasingly at home, it doesn’t work as well for the details of daily life operations. There’s too much system to setup and not enough intuitive interaction, which makes it too cumbersome in a situation when I need to be highly effective with my time. With two little kids at home (9.5mo and 2.33yr), the work needs to get done as efficiently as possible so that every “spare” moment can be for what I need, not what the kids need. In short, Notion requires too much tinkering when I want straightforward.

Which brings me to what this note is about:

Organizing how essential information flows between my mind and my digital tooling

Here’s where I’m at, as of Sunday, November 20th, 2022

  • Notion is practical
  • Obsidian is magical
  • Drafts is foundational

My System for Storing and Accessing Knowledge

Notion — Workspace Organization and Structured Notes

For organizing information and work over time, such as structured knowledge, internet research, and shareable, collaborative docs

  • Global Inbox to capture any type of input from links to plans to ideas and queue them for processing/tending
  • Project, research, and document management
  • Highlights from reading and web clipping
  • Internet discoveries and research collection
  • Organizing, structuring, and recalling information and knowledge
  • Collaborative Household Operations and Travel Planning
  • Databases of Personal Collections: Gear Library, Prep Supplies, TV Shows, Cannabis, Rolodex

Obsidian — Messy Notebooks

Obsidian is for building my body of work

  • Digital garden
  • Daily notes/logs
  • Sparkfile
  • Ideas, thoughts, and musings
  • Fleeting notes
  • Notes to expand
  • Evergreen notes

Drafts — Sticky Notes

Drafts is for immediate note capture

  • Quick Capture
  • Scratchpad
  • Processing/Routing to other apps

Things — Task Management

For more immediate and time-bound needs, Things is for getting shit done

  • Tasks
  • Deliverables
  • Deadlines
  • Dates

Apple Reminders — Ad Hoc

Reminders is for ad hoc things I don’t need to see in order to complete — literally, reminders

  • Ad hoc reminders
  • Location-based reminders
  • Timers, things not to forget, etc

My Process for Keeping Things Organized

Inboxes are reviewed daily and zeroed out weekly

  • Daily reviews are to cherrypick the urgent and important items to be prioritized
  • Weekly reviews are to fully process all inboxes to zero and close all loops
    • Drafts
    • Obsidian
    • Notion
    • Things
    • Reminders

What I do with these notes — A.R.E.A.

  • ACT
    • Purpose: Task / to do
    • Tool: Things
    • Purpose: Research / to learn
    • Tool: Notion
    • Purpose: Thinking / to write
      • Anything that comes from my brain: notes, ideas, essays, paragraphs, fleeting thoughts, insights, wisdom, knowledge
    • Tool: Obsidian
    • Purpose: Archive / to save
    • Tool: Notion

Everything starts in Drafts, then gets routed

  • For ideas to emerge through writing →
    • Obsidian Inbox
      • zz-inbox
        • new .md files are always created here
        • needs rigorous maintenance
      • #to-process
        • added via read-it-later and highlighting apps
        • needs relatively frequent and timely processing
  • For things to get done in time →
    • Things Inbox
      • tasks, deadlines
  • For knowledge to get organized and archived →
    • Notion Inbox
      • links, webpages, resources, files, organizations, anything to research

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