Why more users don’t use Google Keep is a mystery to me because it’s awesome. It has changed how I use to-dos, GTD, Task Management, Project management and note taking. It simply is my “Organized Mind“.
I can run smaller projects completely in Google Keep. Sometimes in just one note by using the built-in checklist feature, reminders, pin feature, and color marking. And sometimes in multiple notes categorized using hashtags.
Checklists are excellent to use when brainstorming ideas and thoughts. After you have emptied your head into one checklist, you just give it a meaningful title and a reminder date and time. And when you get the notification, do what you need to do and check it off as done and give it a new reminder date and once again do what are needed and check it off as done. Do that until the complete checklist is done. Then archive it for future reference. The pin feature and color marking can preferably be used with checklists too.
One of the most important things to do when it comes to productivity is to plan your day and week. And the Pin feature in Google Keep is excellent for that. I have a reminder set up in Inbox by Gmail that says that I should Plan my Day 8am every day, and plan my week every Sunday at 5pm. So when I get a notification with that reminder I go through all the notes I have in my “Inbox” in Google Keep (the Inbox is simply all the notes that are not archived yet), and Pin all the notes that are the ones that need to be done today, or at least need attention today. I also go through all the completed notes and archive them so that they disappear from the “Inbox”.
If you have a larger project that doesn’t fit just one note, then use HashTags to keep the notes and projects together. So for example, if you have a project to “Build a House”, then create a hashtag #House and use that for all the notes that should go into that project. That way you can easily just view that project, and work on that project just by clicking on that hashtag or choosing it from the list of hashtags. If you do that, just the notes in that Project opens, and if you create new notes there they automatically get the same hashtag. It’s like filtering your complete Google Keep to just be THAT project if you know what I mean.
Using Google Keep for note taking is brilliant too. With the excellent widget I can have on my start page on my Android phone, I can easily do a photo note, scribble a note on the display with my finger, create a checklist (for brainstorming for example), write a simple note using the software keyboard of choice. I really like that Google Keep extracts all the text in a photo you take so that it gets searchable. That is a brilliant feature.
I also use the color marking feature to add a priority to the note. So the “hotter” the color is, the more important it is. So if it’s red, it’s very important, but if it’s blue, there is no hurry to give the note attention. A neutral color like white and gray, is just that, “neutral”. It means that I haven’t handled it yet, or it’s not necessary to give it a priority. As the default, all notes are white in Google Keep.
So by using Google Keep together with Google Calendar and Inbox by Gmail that syncs with each other, I can handle all my GTD, Task Management, Project Management and Note Taking. It’s the way that makes me as productive as I am nowadays.