illustration of Cyborg with human face, managing his calendar in a futuristic device, by DALL-E

The following post is a response I wrote for this thread on HN.

I use several tools, but I try to keep the following system:

The main (top level) groups are:

  • Personal (finances, insurances, gov, health, personal interests, etc)
  • Work (Freelance and as employee)
  • Church (I'm volunteering for some church-related projects[1][2][3], I keep those projects separated from the Work folder)

I use those 3 main categories for my notes, my calendar events and my todolist.

Then, in every one of those main categories, depending on the tool, I have folders for each project. For example, in my Work folder, since I am working on my startup, I have: NameOfTheStartup, Freelancing (contains small client project folders), BigFreelancingClient1, etc.

Also, I have a naming convention for folders that are "meta" : they start with an underscore (so they show on top) and are named in ALL_CAPS. Example:

  • _EVENTS (for recurring things to do when something happens within those categories of my life. Those can refer to a _PROCEDURE)
  • _KNOWLEDGE (for storing information for those categories, such as PDFs, ebooks, etc)
  • _THINKING (for notes about things I think about in those categories. It can contain notes of books I'm reading.)
  • _PROCEDURES (for common tasks that I have documented)
  • _LOGS (contains text files where I put time-ordered events that occurred within those categories of my life)

Tools I'm using (in order of prevalence):

  • Todoist for short term events/todos
  • The windows File Explorer. They contain Docx, PDF, md, Xlsx and txt files. (Lacking consistency with file formats)
  • Google Calendar for long term events
  • Standard Notes for quick notes that are mostly grouped by project. They take the form of BATF (Big-Ass Text-File) where I simply take notes of commands I need and shell outputs I need to analyze or keep for later.
  • PinBoard for bookmarks. It's good enough for me.
  • Keybase has file storage, so I use that to store my journaling (in txt form). For tagging in my journal, I use a special `[tag]` syntax.

My system also has a weekly routine that includes:

  • Taking long term events/tasks from Calendar into my Todoist (next 7 days).
  • Looking at all the files in all the _EVENTS folders.
  • Taking a look at the next 4 weeks in my Calendar.