Organize, Please… Digital Lists and Notes

I love my paper to-do lists and my physical agenda.  Recently, however, I’ve been trying to figure out the best way to be organized digitally.  (I still write everything down… as I find writing it down helps me remember important dates and tasks.)
I tried making lists in gmail using the “tasks” thing and I have tried keeping a running list in Word.  I grew frustrated with both because there is a limited amount of room for creativity.  And not even creativity as much as flexibility.  I like paper because you can put a list WHEREVER, change sizes, draw arrows, and group things easily.
Enter Microsoft OneNote.
I will warn you, it’s a little bit confusing and intimidating.  It actually took me about a week to feel 100% comfortable with the program, but I will never look back!  It is AWESOME!!!!  Definitely spend some time playing around with it.  I also watched a ton of videos on Youtube to see how other people used the program to get some good ideas.
The first thing I did was make these great checklists.  I really like that physical feeling of “crossing something off” my list…. clicking the check mark is a great substitute.  I love that you can move the text boxes anywhere on the page.  So much better than word.  Also, unlike paper lists, you can totally delete or edit boxes if you make a mistake!

I’ve also fallen in love the way you can take notes for classes.  You can add files (I added the link to the power point corresponding to that class), screen clippings… the possibilities are endless!!!
Create new “binders” for different areas.  For example, I currently have a personal binder and a school binder.  Then add different folders within the binders… and then pages/dividers for each folder.
It’s really quite brilliant.

I started off with this video.  
This guy though… he’s great.  Let him show you around!!!

Anyone else a OneNote fan?  Has it changed your life for the better, like it has for me???

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One Note is my OBSESSION! i'm not a particularly organized person to begin with so it really helps me get all my notes together. I also love being able to search through all my notes and find what i'm looking for quickly. its helped me to answer some tricky questions in my lecture hall.


I LOVE One Note! I was so happy when I saw your post today – I've missed the Organize, Please posts, they are definitely some of my favourite posts!


It's even better if you have a tablet PC! You can take handwritten notes and annotate powerpoint slides.

Maggie @ Cheap&Chic

I used One Note in College but then switched to EverNote immediately after because evernote was first to have notes accessible anywhere (phone, any computer, etc.) . Now that One Note has that capability, I might consider switching back!


OneNote is great for class notes – the search feature is the best part.

I also prefer to cross things off my list rather than check them off. Instead of (or in additon to) the checkboxes, you can also use the "strikethrough" button under the formatting options to cross things off.

I use Evernote for non-school related things. The web clipper tool is priceless for keeping track of my favourite blogs posts and online recipes.


I am extremely organized, and OneNote is part of the software downloaded on our school laptops…I used it constantly, and in ALL my classes!


Evernote vs OneNote

OneNote has a lot more variety and you can definitely have more fun with it. You can place things all over the screen. It's a lot easier to print things (Evernote has its heading all over the printed sheets). Also I just like the tabs and binder.

It synchronizes to all sorts of platforms. I never worry about losing material. The web clipper and automatic url tagging is amazing. It's free. Unfortunately, the interface is lacking.

I use OneNote for more extensive research, lists and notes, multiple pictures, and more journal-like uses. Although, I hate I can't access it online.

I use EverNote for short notes. I save an individual note for one photo, one recipe, brainstorming.


Could you please do an "Organize, please" for non-digital notes and such? I know you have to have some piles of paper lying around! How do you organize your notes? (Please tell me you do not use the Cornell system. Grr) Could you scan some of your notes and such for us (well, me)?


I love OneNote! I use it to type all my notes up, keep list in it, I sometimes even brain storm information in it for essays because I can place things anywhere on the screen and draw arrows and all that. I also use the unfiled notes section often to place things that I dont have any where else to go at the time but dont know where to put them otherwise. That way I know where it is when I need it. I also enjoy that I never have to safe anything and that it just does it for me. I know I wont lose anything that way !


I had OneNote in my first toshiba (it had windows 7 was so new back then i think) when I entered high school (3 years ago) but then in the school I had to install the printers they had there and I think they deleted the program and I really loved it the few times I used it and had some important notes there… I also took notes on the computer a lot so I really needed it
Now I entered college I have another toshiba (other model) and I am really happy it has one note 🙂