How to Organize Your Lists Using Apple Notes!
Do you need a better way to organize your digital lists, documents, and files?
How would you like to keep a copy of your tax returns in a safe place and have your holiday gift list in the SAME place?
Next, imagine going to a doctor appointment and forgetting your insurance card, no problem, you have a copy of it right in your Notes app.
I have Apple Notes set up to do all of that for me and much more.
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Yes, I said Apple Notes. I personally think Apple Notes is a very underrated app, and most people are unaware of all the awesome features it has to offer.
The Real Organization Problem:
For years, I have relied on a 12″x4″ basket on a counter in my kitchen as my “go-to” place to put pretty much everything.
Everything I needed to keep safe from losing or being thrown out, I put in that basket.
I started putting every important piece of paper or note in that basket years ago.
It works great except that every couple of months, the basket gets too full, so I have to go through it and refile things somewhere else, and even throw things I don’t need anymore.
Still, there are documents, letters or receipts in that basket that have been in there for years and years!
Like, I have my car title there, receipts for big-ticket items like our refrigerator
(boring, I know).
It never occurred to me that I should be backing all of that up somehow digitally.
I would not only be getting rid of some paper but also, save all the time I spend searching!
Making EVERYTHING Digital is Really Pretty Easy.
We do keep our real estate papers, investment statements, tax returns in a file in a cupboard in the basement. – Okay, yes that is has become embarrassing. However, I know where to go to find them.
Seriously, I have notes, lists, and documents all over the place!
I admit to using up to 5 different organizers all at the same time for different purposes.
I have used Google Keep, OneNote, Evernote, Trello, and other organization apps, and they all have great features, but in the end, I still had an organization system that was overwhelming and frustrating.
Who doesn’t love Google?
I do, and I especially enjoy all the features of Google Sheets and Docs and use both to create important spreadsheets, charts, and documents.
That being said, I spend way too much time looking for documents in google. I know I can and do keep them in folders, but as I said, I want to go to ONE place for everything.
My dream is to have ALL of my documents, files, lists, and notes
ALL IN ONE PLACE!
With Notes, I just grab the link to my spreadsheet or google doc and put a link into my Notes where I can find it fast. This is especially awesome when it is a document shared by someone else.
Apple Notes as a List Maker
I started to use Apple Notes several years ago, but basically just made new notes whenever I wanted to keep track of something.
- What gifts do I need to buy
- To-Do Lists
- Which movie or TV series should I watch next
- My guest list when we have a dinner party
- Holiday menus with recipes
- Travel destinations
- Bucket lists
Using Notes in this way is really not much different than my kitchen basket.
I kept the information I didn’t want to forget, but not in any organized way.
My Notes were listed in random order ( or so I thought) and was totally unaware of all the sorting and organizing options available to me.
On the plus side, my Notes have become a resource for planning events from year to year.
- I like to keep track of the gifts that I buy for each family member and how much I spent.
It’s always more than I budgeted for.
- I like to throw Appetizer & Cocktail parties at various times during the year- yes there is a Note for that with menus and recipes.
- If we are taking a trip or vacation, I keep track of everything I need to be totally organized from packing lists to a day by day itinerary. Again, I keep most lists as a future reference.
- When I don’t need a list, I have a folder called “Archives” and move lists there until I need them again.
Apple Notes Organized My Life
To repeat, I am talking about wanting to keep all the important, and not so important documents in my life in ONE place.
That means I need to organize not only my lists but also find a way to include all the documents in my kitchen basket and the files I want easy access to from our home office.
I need to add here that my goal is to digitally keep my life organized, easier, and efficient.
Furthermore, I want to reduce the time I spend searching through papers!
Now I Need to Get Serious.
Okay, so let’s add-in:
- Tax Documents
- Official documents like birth certificates, powers of attorney
- Documents sent to you in word, pages or google docs.
- Insurance information
- Meeting notes
So here it is.
Below, I’m going to briefly describe my method of keeping all the lists and documents above using the app “Notes” on my MacBook, iPhone, and iPad.
In addition, I decided to create an
ONLINE COURSE to help you create your own personalized organization plan using Notes.
I surprisingly found Apple Notes has pretty much all the features that work together to keep my files and documents completely organized. In addition, it is very user-friendly.
How Are All These Features Helping Me Organize?
- Put my lists into folders- This is important to me because as I said, I keep lists that I need for years. I plan a lot of holidays and menus. Instead of starting over each year, I have a resource to tell me not only what I served, but what went well and what I need to do differently.
- Scanning documents to my lists has been invaluable when wanting to access official documents quickly or tax documents. – These can easily be password protected.
I even keep a folder here just for my parents with their documents Medicare, Retirement accounts, etc. This has been a life-saver.
- Adding photos & Videos. I know you can share these directly, but you all know you don’t just take photos of people. These are the photos and videos you take shopping, on vacation, or when out and about to keep a list of ideas.
- Adding links from other sites is more than inserting links on a topic to a list. I not only have “lists” of links, but I also have a list of links to different resources on home decorating travel destinations.
- Here is the big news about links, when I find a gift or product on a site, I don’t have to copy and paste, I can just “share” it to my notes!
I can create a new list or add it to an existing list. – LOVE THIS!
- Making notes secure is huge. Apple Notes is totally secure. I don’t worry about putting passwords or files that contain personal information on a list.
I can password protect it or use my fingerprint!
- Thank Goodness For the Cloud!! Sharing between devices is one of the features I love the most.
I can make a note on my phone while shopping or at work, and later when I open my iPad, it is there in the same place, and I can continue working with it.
In the end, I found Apple Notes had features most people don’t even know about, including me!
When I hear something I want to remember, I quickly open Notes, create a new note and write it down.
Lists don’t have to belong, they might just be a few words, like you may be having a conversation with someone and they mention a great series they are watching on Netflix. Immediately add that to your list that is categorized as “ Movies and TV Series”.
When you are out to dinner, open a new note and take a picture of your receipt right from the app, file it in your “receipt folder”.
I seriously have a list entitled, “Things to remember for Chuck” (my husband).
I don’t think an explanation needed here.
At this point in time, I have not been disappointed. I know it sounds too good to be true, but Notes lets me have EVERYTHING stored in one place. The more I use it, the more I love it.
I know it may sound overwhelming, but once you get started it quickly makes sense.
Plus, you can easily rearrange files and folders in seconds.
Need More Information?
Using Apple Notes to create your own organization plan is easy to do. I can help!
Take a look at How to Organize Your Digital Life Course.
Here you can learn step by step how to use the app and to easily create your own organization system.
Interested in balancing your Digital life? This post will really help you make lifestyle changes. Do You Live a Digitally Healthy Lifestyle?