Tag Archives: EverNote

Back From My Internet Fast

You may recall that back in late October, I made plans to go on an internet fast for the month of November. I wrote a post about it: Taking An Internet Break. Anyhow, I’m back and want to share with you some of what I experienced and learned.

But first . . . an apology. For those of you who subscribed to my blog on Kindle, and for those who looked forward to reading here at “David’s Place,” I apologize for not returning on Dec. 1 as I had originally intended. That becomes part of my story too. I really do appreciate EVERY reader, and I value your time.

So, I took a much-needed break from my blog, Facebook, Buffer, Twitter, and the endless writing and posting that goes with all that. Not to mention, the research and reading across the blogosphere to bring you the best that I can deliver when I write. (I’m sure some of you can identify)

The first week, I felt as though I didn’t know what to do with the time . . . WRONG!  I’ve always been the kind of person who knows exactly what I will do when I retire. I knew that in Jr. High. Now I’m close to the age where retirement might be expected. So, I had no writer’s block or confusion over what to do with my time. I began by creating a reading list on GoodReads. If you haven’t discovered Goodreads, you owe it to yourself–unless you’re already on LibraryThing. (I think there’s a post that you could write if you’re familiar with BOTH of them. Love to see a comparison review of the two sites and their features. Anyone game?)

Anyhow, I developed a “to-read-next” shelf on GoodReads. And I methodically began to read.

I also spent more time with people . . . face-to-face. I met them for breakfast.

Then I decided to go paperless and scan everything into OneNote 2010. I wrote a blog post that gives more particulars. But if you’re not already scanning your stuff into OneNote or EverNote, then you have something to look forward to. Love that I can retrieve it instantly once it’s scanned in.

So I spent more time quietly reflecting on the Bible. Listening to the Lord, journaling, and contemplating also filled the time I would have been using to surf Facebook and Twitter.

I made a couple of decisions too:

  • No more mindless scanning of the Facebook news feed. I look for high value friends and family shares and comments.
  • I’m keeping a lower profile. It takes less time and effort. I have more readers now then when I was spending hours tweeting, posting, and interacting online.
  • I want to post less often, but with improved content–making my contributions more worthy of my readers’ time.
  • My days begin with prayer and writing. ALL social interaction and email is after 12 noon.
  • Only give 2 hrs a day to the internet (unless doing special research).
  • Enjoy more face-time with people.

These choices will improve my quality of life, as well as my personal relationships. That’s what I did and learned on my social networking fast.

By the way, I can now highly recommend a TWO MONTH fast from social networking and book marketing for you authors. Write more.

My next fast? I’m going to try fasting for a month from my Smartphone. It’s way too much a new appendage and needs to be pushed back into balance.

©2013, David C Alves

Follow @davidcalves

How I Use OneNote 2016


Image by carl.lacey2 via Flickr

UPDATE: I updated this post for OneNote 2016 [previously 2010]:

Do you have trouble keeping track of things? Is it hard to find that sticky note you wrote . . . and in what book did you leave it? As an author and speaker for over 30 years, I make extensive use of OneNote. I find it invaluable for both personal and professional uses. And to keep my sanity. OneNote is my virtual filing, retrieval, and storage system as well as my secretary.

Recently I upgraded to OneNote 2010. I have to say I really love it. Because of my propensity to forget or misplace things, a program like OneNote is indispensable. I’m so glad I found it. I always like it when I find a post that introduces me to new software to increase my productivity or that gives me keys or tips to make better use of it. So I thought I might inspire some of you who are not yet committed to either EverNote or OneNote. I’m including some of the tips that make it such a good tool for me.

I’ve never used EverNote, mainly because I’m no longer an Apple user. All of my PC stuff is Google or Microsoft based. So for me, OneNote 2016 is the better choice. But if you like EverNote, then be sure to visit the many posts available to help you at MichaelHyatt.com. Here’s a great place to begin: “How to Organize Evernote for Maximum Efficiency.” Mike’s  EverNote articles helped me with ideas for my use of OneNote too. For example, he inspired me to scan things directly into OneNote (more on this later).

Here are some ways I use OneNote 2016:

To store receipts:

I take pictures of my receipts, then send them to OneNote. Sometimes I simply scan them in. I store them in an online file entitled “Unentered Receipts” Then when I attend to my finances, I can simply go to the unentered receipts file and transfer the info to my Quicken and finance sheet. After a receipt is entered, I move that receipt photo to “Entered Receipts.” Everything in one place.

File research clippings:

I keep video links in a file called “Important Video links” or I file them under specific areas of research or interest. Filing quotes, quips, contacts, and miscellaneous bits of information is just as easy. I use “Readability” (Readability.com) to clear the clutter off a web page Im reading and then I can easily copy and paste the text into OneNote or use the side note feature of OneNote to simply drag the text there. Not only does it receive the text, but it inserts a link to the original article on my newly created OneNote page. Later, I can search my research clippings out and add tags, or check boxes and priority numbers. NO MORE PAPER stickey-notes everywhere. I’ve virtually eliminated paper using OneNote.

Reading lists & log:

One of my favorite uses is the tracking of my reading and books. (Keep an eye out for a future post on the specifics of using OneNote 2016 for your reading and retrieval of reading notes & quotes). I will also share how I transfer my reading highlights in Kindle to OneNote so that they’re searchable and available wherever I am, at any time. This is important for those of you who, like me, work from several locations both at home and away.

My Journals (Writing, Travel, Spiritual & Morning Ramblings)

I keep ALL my journals in one place–in OneNote. They are each password protected. I can set the password options so that they remain open throughout my workday or they are secured when I leave the page or following a certain time limit of inactivity. I’m also able to electronically search out an idea I had, but can’t remember where in my written journals that idea might be.

My Spiritual Journals – I’ve written over 23 volumes of handwritten  journals that cover 35 years of journaling. They consist of notebooks, day journals, ledgers, in all sizes and shapes. The past 5 years of my journals are already in OneNote. But ultimately they will all be transcribed to OneNote. I want them to be usable and accessible. OneNote makes that a reality for me.

My Travel Journals – Keeping my travel journals up-to-date is made easy. I simply enter my favorite places or most recent trip with  photos and location information and viola . . . I can enter “Tbilisi” in a OneNote search window and find a trip page immediately and be reminded of my trip. Reflecting on the pictures and the itinerary kept there, I can enter some memory I’d forgotten to enter at the time.

My Writing Journals – This is where I store my ideas, thoughts, character sketches,  and other notes for future writing. This blog comes from the ideas stored there. Future post, book, eBook, and article ideas I keep in that journal. And I can return and find things so much more easily. With my OneNote app for Android, I can easily record an idea quickly in OneNote and its there when I get home to my computer. Simple. If you prefer scribbling notes to yourself, scan them in when you get home and the text is searchable.
Other Uses I could talk about:

  • Store my Quotes, anecdotes, & illustrations (for later keyword or tag retrieval)
  • Cut down on paper use / Scan photos, documents, important papers, articles, etc
  • Prepare my messages for speaking
  • Joint projects / online (this will be another post). I work with several people on the same project. OneNote keeps track of our contributions and lists author’s initials so that we know who placed what on the page.

Best of all for me . . .No More PAPER! Now everything can be in OneNote. It’s a huge electronic filing system that I don’t have to organize. Because my items can be searched electronically, I only need enter a keyword or tag (word, icon, or both). No more lost info or fat files of paper to search through.

My advice, if you’re not using OneNote 2016, you owe it to yourself to give it a try.

QUESTION: How do you use, OneNote 2016?

DISCLAIMER: I am not writing for Microsoft, nor am I earning anything from my opinions about or uses of OneNote in this post.

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