Saturday, 11 July 2015

Evernote as a Task Manager

How to use Evernote to manage large tasks and todos.

Evernote is a great tool which can be used for nearly everything, from simply taking notes to tracking your expenses. Another use of Evernote is as a task manager. You need an Evernote and an IFTTT account. Evernote is great for managing large tasks and projects and you can use the note space for all the stuff you need; from docs to text. Below are some simple steps on how to set up Evernote as a task manager.

> Getting the Daily Journal

The daily journal is the note that appears in your default notebook every day. You use it to place the task links, events and more in. It is the key part to using Evernote as a task manager. To get this, you need an IFTTT account. The recipe is below.

IFTTT Recipe: Evernote morning routine for students connects date-time to evernote

The daily journal note

> Setting up the Notebooks

You need five notebooks to be the containers for your tasks:

  • !Due Today
  • !This Week
  • !Upcoming
  • !Waiting for
  • Archive

          - '!Due Today' Notebook

The '!Due Today' notebook is the notebook where you put all the tasks that you need (or want) to complete today. When you have selected the tasks you want, you copy and paste the note link into your journal note. You then put a checkbox in front of it. For each note, add a reminder. When the task is done, you tick it off the journal note, tick the reminder, and move the note/task into the 'Archive' notebook.

The daily journal note with I task from the '!Due Today' notebook

          - '!This Week' Notebook

This notebook is where you put all the tasks you can complete after you have completed the tasks in the '!Due Today' notebook, but which are not urgent.

          - '!Upcoming' Notebook

The '!Upcoming' notebook is where you put all the tasks which you have scheduled.

          - 'Archive' Notebook

This notebook is where all your completed tasks will be placed.

> The Daily Routine

          - Morning

Each morning, at 7:00 AM, I sync Evernote and the journal note appears. I highlight the first five items, and then press the checklist button. Then, I click on the tasks stack. I can see all the reminders, and if there any in my '!Due Today' notebook, and any that I want or need to complete today, I move them to the '!Due Today' notebook. I then copy the note link into the journal note, and add a checkbox. I do this for every note in the '!Due Today' notebook. If I have any events during they day, I bullet point them and add the name and time.

A note with an event

          - During the day

Throughout the day, after I have completed the tasks, I tick them off. I then tick off the note reminder, and move it to the 'Archive' notebook.

          - In the evening

Just before I close my computer, I write Notes edited on {date} in the journal note, and then put a horizontal rule. I then use my saved search (updated:day-0 -tag:task) to get all of the notes that I edited on that day. Wednesday was not a very busy day, and therefore only IFTTT recipe notes were in there. If you want to do this, I would advise that you tag each task with the tag 'task', so it does not show up in the saved search. I then move the journal note into my '.Timeline' notebook.

The edited notes section
Then, every day I repeat this process.

Thanks for reading!

What do you use Evernote for, and what do you think of it? Feel free to share in the comments below!


  1. Cool! I will use this from now on. Thanks!

    1. It really is a great method for large tasks and mini-projects. Thanks for commenting! :)

  2. a great use of evernote. thanks

  3. One of the nice things about this method is that, if you are on vacation, simply turning off the recipe halts the whole process. Better than having to modify daily task lists or coming back to dozens of 'overdue' tasks.

    1. That is very helpful. I like being able to see everything I have one one day in that note. Thanks for reading!

  4. In regards to the '!Due Today' notebook etc
    I would think this would be handled better as a saved-search of your task notes
    Various options; a tag on your task notes; reminder date set on your tasl notes

    1. The problem with that would be that you would have to tag each note, whilst with notebooks you just drag it there. Thanks for reading and commenting!