March 23, 2018

My Favorite App for Staying Organized

Anyone who has a two-year-old will tell you that life can be busy.  But couple that craziness with trying to run a business full-time, and staying organized can seem impossible!  While I’m not the biggest fan of technology (I’d be fine if we went back to life in the 1950s), there are a few apps that really are worth their weight in gold!  Today I’m sharing my favorite app for staying organized, because sometimes you just need a little help!

I’ve always been a list maker.   To Do lists, shopping lists, you name it!  When I started my business, I found myself with a whole new set of lists to keep track of, a whole new set of ideas to brainstorm, and no central place to keep track of them all!  I was constantly looking around the house for various scraps of note paper and quickly became overwhelmed and frustrated.  Caleb suggested that I try using a basic notebook app on my phone and it helped…a little.  Yes, I had a central place to jot things down, but it was still so unorganized and difficult to sort through. 

Then I found Evernote! 

Samantha Ludlow Photography, Evernote, organize, organization, apps, notebook app, to do list

When it comes to notebook apps, Evernote is hands down my favorite!  I actually hate calling it a “notebook” app because it can do SO much more! The basic app is completely FREE and has met all of my needs for keeping track of things in my business and around the house.  Each upgraded plan offers additional features to make sharing notes and ideas easier with a team of people.  For now, the basic plan has been perfectly sufficient.  

Some of my favorite features on the basic plan include:

  • Notebooks.  This allows me to separate notes into different categories, such as “Blog Ideas” or “To Do: Ludlow Household.” No more sorting through hundreds of notes to find what you want!
  • Check Lists.  This is the list-maker’s dream!  You can create a list with boxes next to each item and check them off as you complete them.  
  • Reminders.  If an item is time sensitive, just mark your note with a date and time, and the app will remind you to with notifications. 
  • Integration across multiple devices.  With the basic plan, you can sync two devices, which works perfectly for us.  Upgraded plans allow syncing across as many devices as you want! 
  • Multiple mediums for creating notes.  In addition to writing text notes, you can also create handwritten notes, save images as a note, record an audio note, save attachments, or set a simple reminder.   The possibilities are endless! 
  • Note sharing with friends/colleagues.  This makes it so easy for sending information or thoughts to Caleb! 
  • Web page clipping.  Instead of  bookmarking pages or sending URLs, you can clip the page itself, and even highlight important sections!

Some of the additional features available on the upgraded plans are:

  • Additional online storage for notes. 
  • Unlimited devices.
  • Scan and digitize business cards.  
  • Shared work space for collaborative projects. 
  • Integrated email. 
  • Customer support.
Evernote, organize, organization, app, notebook app, to do list, Samantha Ludlow Photography

Here you can see the different “notebooks” that I have created. On the right, you can see the different notes that exist within my “To Do: Ludlow Household” notebook.

Evernote, organize, organization, app, notebook app, to do list, Samantha Ludlow Photography

On the left, you can see all of the different note types that you can create! The right image is an example note I created using the “handwriting” format.

Evernote, organize, organization, app, organization app, notebook app, to do list, Samantha Ludlow Photography

This note shows how you can integrate check-off lists within your notes. It is definitely one of my favorite features!

The bottom line:  Everyone needs some help staying organized now and then.  If you need a little boost in this department, Evernote can be a great option, and you can start out completely free!  

NOTE:  This is not a paid review!  I just genuinely enjoy this product and wanted to share in hopes that others may find it useful as well! 🙂