Do you have boxes and plastic bins stored around your house and you don’t remember what is in them? If you’re determined to get organized this year as one of you resolutions, here’s a handy way to use Evernote.
If you’ve been reading my stuff for any length of time, you know how much I love Evernote. I mainly save information from the internet. Evernote is such a handy organizational tool, I got to thinking how could I use it in other ways.
My basement and attic are full of boxes. I think I know what’s in each box, but when I go searching for something it doesn’t take me long to figure out I don’t. And, as I’m rummaging through box after box looking for that one item, I vow that I have to organize the boxes so next time I’ll remember what is in each box. But, that never happens either.
This year, I came up with a plan. With my phone loaded with the Evernote app and a permanent marker, I decided to catalog what was in each box.
My naming system is going to be simple.
I started in the basement. Each box was labeled B1, B2, B3 and so on. I opened each box and then recorded what was in the box, using the Evernote audio feature if I wanted to list everything in the box, or type a single line description on one Evernote note if everything in the box was the same item, for example, books.
First I created a note and labeled it basement. This would be used for my list of one item boxes.
When I came to a box with multiple items that I wanted to list specifically, I created a recording. To do this, click on the plus sign. Choose audio button. As soon as you click on this button the recording starts. List off what’s in the closet or box you’re looking at.
When you’re finished, hit the square button. Then change the title to the appropriate label, for example, C1-main floor closet.
When you’re done with the recordings, put them all in their own notebook.
You don’t have to do every box at once either. The next time you go looking for something and you have to rummage through a box, take your phone and record what’s in it. Save the note making sure to label it, and then when you have to look for something on that next hunt, listen to your note to see if it’s in that box.
You can choose to stop here, but I would suggest going the extra step because listening to recordings trying to find what you’re looking for in the future, will take some time.
Create a written document of what is in the boxes and closets.
It’s much quicker to look at a written document when you want to know where something is. And it’s not difficult nor that time-consuming to type your recordings.
If you don’t have a lot of boxes, I would recommend using the table feature in Evernote. I’ve got one started as an example. Decide how many columns and rows you need and create the table. I have three rows because I’m dividing up by three floors. How many boxes you have will determine the columns.
You could create a spreadsheet using Google Docs or if you really want to get fancy, use Airtable, a free software that I’ve started using and really like. Airtable would make it easy if you want to attach a photograph of the box and its contents. This way, you could eliminate typing out the contents.
Either way, your first step should be to make your recordings and one note with Evernote. Remember, there is no uploading; the recording is saved automatically in Evernote.
I bet once you get going, it won’t take you very long. And the next time you have to go looking for that one item, you’ll save yourself the headache of rummaging through box after box.
Let me know how you use Evernote to organize your household.