August 3, 2015

Time to Consolidate!

I was chatting with someone recently about my Project Ice Cream spreadsheet and it made me realize that I have lists and notes on:
  • Wunderlist
  • Simplenote
  • Google Docs
  • Google Sheets
  • Email drafts (+ ones I send myself)
  • Text files on my laptop
  • Notebooks
  • May Designs Planner
I consider myself to be a very organized person and even though my notes are everywhere, I know where everything is. Still, it became pretty clear that I needed to consolidate because it would be easier and a lot more convenient. Deep down I know I’ll still use all these things in some way but I went through everything and moved stuff around so I’d mainly use 3-4 things instead of 8.

LISTS // Wunderlist, Simplenote, Google Sheets
I was using all three for lists essentially. Originally all my lists (such as Friends with ARCs, review books, Project Ice Cream, Audrey Hepburn movies to watch) were on Google Sheets. Then I moved my review books list over to Wunderlist. Then on Simplenote I added my lists for blog post and Books IRL ideas. Essentially all my lists are checklists of things to see/do/eat and Wunderlist is really  the best option for that. So I moved everything over and it’s been working out great. I love marking things as complete and I ended up even making more lists that I had been thinking about! Another bonus: You can collaborate with other people on it.

The winner: Wunderlist!

NOTES // Simplenote, Google Docs, Email, Text files, Notebooks 
My notes are probably the most haphazard because I use whatever’s available. I carry an actual notebook in my purse wherever I go (just in case) but I have Simplenote on my phone and my work + home laptop. But I always have gmail open for gchat so sometimes it’s easier to open up an email draft so I can write down notes plus talk to friends at the same time. Google Docs I don’t use nearly as much anymore. I just have a recipe on IFTTT that backs up all my posts automatically to there.

When I looked at all my notes, it was obvious I mostly rely on Simplenote. I know lots of people prefer Evernote but as I’ve said before (see my 7 apps I can't blog without post), I prefer super basic note-taking. I wish I could do a little more formatting on it but it’s just so easy to use and it suits my needs perfectly. Then notebooks will always be a must. I have two styles depending on the bag I’m carrying: May Designs size or the mini softcover Moleskin. I carry enough stuff around so I don’t want anything that adds too much weight.

The winners: Simplenote + Notebooks!

CALENDAR // Google Calendar, May Designs Planner, Google Sheets 
I don’t know what I did before Google Calendar (I use the app Sunrise but it’s connected to my Google account). It was and still is for my personal day-to-day events but occasionally I’d put a blog thing on there if I was worried I might forget. At the same time, I kept trying to remember to update my May Designs planner. I love the idea of it (plus it’s just pretty) but it was almost never up-to-date. Plus I do a surprising amount of blog planning at work and with our open office floor plan, I can’t exactly whip that out without being obvious. Then I found this calendar template for Google Sheets and it solved my problem. Except I thought the best idea would be to maintain both my calendar on Google Sheets AND on my planner. I’ve been trying and failing to make them match for the last few months and I decided last week that I needed to stop. I literally ripped up my planner (yes I was dramatic like that) and am sticking with the calendar template. It makes more sense for me. I’m at my desk on the computer all day at work and I’ve got my laptop at home. Plus I can always print out the calendar if I really wanted to have something physically in my hands.

The winners: Google calendar (personal) + Google Sheets Calendar (for blogging)!

*** 

I had randomly tweeted about needing to consolidate and the response I got from everyone is what encouraged me to write this post. It was nice to hear that I’m not the only one with this problem of having notes everywhere! That said, I’d love hear what YOU guys do. Did any of my organization quirks appeal to you? Do you have any go-to apps or methods you think I should try? I’m always open to trying new ideas.

Let me know in the comments! 

4 comments:

  1. I love being organized but I'm not always the most organized person, so definitely going to check these out! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yay for organization! You know that I love being organized. It's been a trial and error process for me as I figure out what works best, but I've narrowed it down to using a paper planner, Google Docs (for spreadsheets and event planning) and Wunderlist (for all my lists).

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sunrise for calendar, Evernote for all notes/ideas/recipes, and Wunderlist for grocery shopping!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ever since I discovered Wunderlist a couple yrs ago, I never looked back. I love it so much & it helps with all my family, blogging, and school needs when it comes to lists & staying organized. I've become alil better at utilizing all of its features and making sure I get the most out of it lately so I'm even happier about it now. Oh, and thanks for the tip about backing up your posts via IFTTT. I recently discovered this feature, late to the game I know, and love it. I backup the blog via a plugin, but it's nice to have this option, too. I rely heavily on Google Calendar that's for sure. I'm gonna give SimpleNote a try. I just use the default Notes app on my phone & Mac right now.

    ReplyDelete