I recently made a post talking about the importance of filing ideas and responsibilities. As I go through my day, I have so many floods of creativity and ideas that I have to get them on paper or better yet in a “system”. I had always carried the old school “Day Runner” system but when smart phones came about it was really a game changer for me. If you calm the racket and noise of ideas in the background of life, you’re freed up to have margin allowing laser focus on what you are doing “now”. The greatest pitfall for me was not taking a fleeting thought and writing it down. I believe there are two forms of organization: Tasks and Ideas. That said, I thought I would share what I use and how I use them.
Omnifocus: This was the first app that I used for keeping projects, notes and ideas. It became really task oriented and like finally having a place to enter anything was a relief. Each app has certain limitations and I found that Omni was better for project management than ideas. Omni is great if you want to have many users sync to an account on many devices.
Evernote: Ok, this was a game changer. I had heard it mentioned to me by a few bloggers but a friend really drove it home when he said “it will change your life”. He’s right. It has. If you are an idea person, project person and run a creative venture I HIGHLY encourage you to download it. First off, its beautiful. I am a big nut when it comes to design and functionality. Second, it integrates to my other apps. Example, there is a web clipper that clips ideas from the web and stores directly to your note or project. Almost like building dream boards and scrapbooking but per project. Evernote syncs to all your devices. It literally changed the whole way I use my iPhone and iPad. I remember saying, “Evernote makes doing life and organizing fun”.
The benefit of Evernote and my system is that I can just throw idea after idea in there as much as I want. I can even voice record, photograph and write an idea. Recording my voice is sometimes better as I can really talk for a while.
Omnifocus is used primarily a filing system for project management and archiving projects, notes for projects and details of the projects. It keeps projects organized.
Having ideas stored triggers other ideas. They build off of each other. I have notebooks in Evernote for different topics: Ideas, Today’s list, Blog Posts, Painting Ideas, Love letters to my wife.
I hope you find this helpful as it can really transform the way you see and do life. It’s really liberating. I can’t imagine life without it.
What tools have you used to help stay organized and focused? Please share your thoughts and let me know how you like the apps. As a creative myself I’m loving the freedom it provides.