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How to Perfectly Store a Digital Note in Your Productivity System?


If you’re reading this, it’s likely that you’re grappling with the chaos of disorganized notes.

I can envision it: notes on your tablet from meetings, random thoughts on your phone, and, dare I say, even an avalanche of sticky notes all over your desktop.

And let’s not talk about the aftermath: hunting for that one crucial note among the rubble, feeling stressed, anxious, and downright miffed when you can’t find it.

I’ve been there too, but I found a way out.

Understanding the Concept of Single Source Of Truth

The first step to move chaos away is to understand a life-changing concept called Single Source Of Truth, or SSOT, your secret weapon to rule the world of note-taking.

“A Single Source of Truth is a designated location for your notes, ensuring you can easily retrieve it when needed. As simple as that.”

Think of it like a well-organized library, where you know exactly which shelf to visit for a particular book or just remember when you were little, and you’d always put your toy back in its special spot. That’s what we’re doing here.

But, beware! Don’t fall into the trap many professionals do by storing all your notes into one big and only container.

A lot of well-meaning business folks make this mistake, thinking it’s like killing two birds with one stone. But in reality, it ’s more like herding cats. Things get chaotic pretty fast.

Here’s the thing: each tool is specially made for certain types of problems and needs with specific purposes.

If you’re fixated on finding a one-size-fits-all solution, you’re heading down the wrong path, as it’s nearly impossible to find such a tool.

Different types of notes call for different tools, similar to how various TV channels cater to different interests.

You wouldn’t expect to watch a nature documentary on a channel dedicated to fashion, would you?

So, when you jot down a note, consider two important questions to decide your Single Source Of Truth:

  1. What type of note is this?

  2. Where would I logically expect to find it later?

Additionally, think about your future self. Don’t leave him scrambling.

Naming your note wisely, with a sprinkle of context, can save your future self a whole bunch of headaches to recall that note because you’re essentially leaving breadcrumbs for him to follow with ease.

Why Intermediate Tools Are So Useful to Store a Note?

Finally, let me end up with an additional concept: “intermediate tools”.

Friction is something we always try to avoid at the Paperless Movement®.

In fact, we always bet on zero friction in any of our courses when defining our concepts, workflows, and how we implement them in the right tools.

“Zero friction always equals high performance.”

Sometimes your Single Source Of Truth is not the right tool talking about friction.

In such cases, it’s pragmatic to temporarily place the note in an easily and zero-friction intermediate tool.

Later, calmly, you can transfer it to its right Single Source Of Truth.

This ensures a seamless process and keeps friction at bay, aligning with the high-performance culture we always encourage and promote.

Last Thoughts

By embracing the Single Source of Truth’s approach and the zero-friction mindset, you’ll find your notes will no longer be scattered.

Instead, they’ll be systematically organized, waiting for you to be retrieved as effortlessly as reaching into your pocket for your keys.

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