I’m someone who loves to write things down.
Something about my hand getting ideas out with a pen on paper ingrains things in my brain. As a result, I used to have pieces of paper with tasks, checklists, and ideas spread out everywhere.
I also had notebooks. Notebooks for everything.
I would get ready to travel for business and go through this whole process of choosing which notebooks to take with me, and making sure that I had all the right papers I needed. As you might imagine my laptop bag was heavy and I was constantly tucking lists in pockets that I had to search for.
This had to change. I was wasting valuable time and energy every time I needed to find something in my notes, or plan a trip. At a company planning meeting I noticed someone efficiently taking notes on a Microsoft Surface, and something clicked. I did my research and chose the iPad Pro which allows me to sync with all my devices and integrate all areas of my life into one compact 11’ tool.
I bought the one with 128 GB’s of memory because I knew I wanted it primarily for the notebook feature and to check email. At first with the pen it felt odd writing on the glass surface. To fix this issue I bought a paper-like surface that you place on the screen like a sticker. It makes it feel like you are writing in an actual notebook, which was a game changer.
To protect the iPad, I initially purchased a case with a keyboard but it was too bulky for me. I ended up with the Urban Armour case that has a space for the pen, keeps the iPad protected, and allows me to set up the iPad all different ways.
It’s simple, but exactly what I need.
You don’t have to go with these exact products. I encourage doing your own research to find what integrates well with the tech you are already using and the specific needs of your life.
Pro-Tip: If you are military, Apple offers a discount. I wish that I knew that before I bought everything. So if you are, make sure to ask for it!
I kept it pretty simple, and even with just the incorporation of a few select programs my productivity has increased exponentially
These are what I started with.
AirServer is only $19.99 for the year and allows you to instantly sync and share screens across all your devices.
For all of my handwritten notes, I use Goodnotes. It allows me to jot down all my notes on the pad just like I would a notebook and easily organize and find what I need in those notes. This program has a search function where it reads your handwriting and then finds all your notes with that word.
It definitely beats looking through 15 notebooks to collect all the ideas I jotted down on Escrow!
GoodNotes also allows me to work with outside documents. Let’s say I want to grab something from another document, like an ebook for example. I can download it, read through, highlight it, and make notes in the margins.
Keep in mind: the only thing I currently use this iPad for is GoodNotes and emails. But just the fact that I got rid of 15 notebooks and the time it took to decide which ones to take with me, has exponentially increased my productivity!
Organization and Planning is Key for Efficiency.
I found a way to integrate my Boldy + Co planner onto my iPad by getting the pdf version, which of course I can jot notes onto with GoodNotes.
Every week this planner has you do a brain dump.
All of my to-do’s I get out of my mind and put here.
Then I go to the pdf version of my planner and add my highest priority actions and chart out my weekly plan.
I can keep all my prior weeks and refer back to them when I want to. I also have a picture of my yearly goals which I check back in with to track my progress.
I keep all my ideas, past and present, organized in folders on my iPad. All the notebooks I had before? I was able to scan them all in, put them in pdf, and import them all into this iPad. I have folders of past notebooks, folders for all of my podcasts, events, and all of it is here saved on the icloud. So I can easily grab it from any of my devices!
Make sure no good ideas are lost!
You are an entrepreneur, ideas are always popping into your head and now you have instant access to a safe place to download those ideas and journal about them. This same thing applies with managing your staff. Things you need to talk to them about often pop into your head and if you don’t write them down, poof! they are gone.
I have weekly one on one meetings with everyone on my team. For every staff member, I have a folder. All I do is open up my ipad and jot down a note about what I need to tell them and then during our meeting I just pull up the notes from earlier that week.
These simple tools have completely changed my life making me at least 3x more productive.
They declutter my brain which means more space for more great ideas, and gives me more time.
Time as we all know is money, but it is also more time with my family, and more time for my community.