Productivity tips: Note taking

By PlamenB | PlamenB | 7 May 2021

If you are like me and like making notes on paper you probably use a notepad.

There’s several reasons why I dislike notepads:

  • they’re too big to carry
  • they have many pages
  • I always forget the notes I made in them
  • I spend ages trying to find out my notes
  • they have brands and some are shinier than other

Therefore I have been experimenting for a number of years with using index cards for taking notes. I have arrived at a format that works for me, gets the job done and doesn’t just sit on my desk being useless (like a notepad would)

There’s several reasons why I like note taking on index cards

  • index cards are light & small
  • the size forces me to be concise with my notes
  • the size forces me to select what to record
  • I can carry the card with me and throw it away once all actions are done
  • usually nobody else is using the method so when people notice it, it’s a reason for conversations

The method is really very simple – have a look at the picture (notes are blurred to hide client related information) :


You can build whatever shapes you like (I prefer square like shapes) and write your notes the way you prefer. I enjoy building an uneven brick-like wall by avoiding straight lines and using curves here and there. I then indicate actions by using the (A) sign, highlight the urgent & important things using orange and non urgent but important using green, whatever blocks are left uncoloured are just for information and that’s it.  The colours could be different of course as long as you know what is what which is why I sometimes add a little legend at the end.

As you can see the index card note taking is cool – and you can try it anytime you feel like it.

After all you only need an index card and a pen.

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