Michelle Mac

Sep 26, 2022

How I Reframed My Digital Life After Reading Building a Second Brain

Building A Second Brain by Tiago Forte is an excellent distillation of the methodology of the same name.

This book is up there with Getting Things Done and How To Take Smart Notes for how transformative it was for me.

Here are the 4 ways this book reframed how I manage my digital life:

Way 1: I manage my digital data with projects, not topics

I follow this practice with my note-taking tool (Obsidian), my digital file management (Google Drive), and the files on my work laptop.

Because I organize files based on what I'm working on instead of an abstract topic, I know immediately where to look for something. I also know where to store things without much extra brain power.

This has freed up a large chunk of mental space in my head which I can now use for thinking, writing, and creating.

Way 2: I created an archive folder for finished projects

Having a folder for finished, closed, or inactive things removes them from my active projects.

This keeps things clean digitally and mentally.

If I do need to refer to something from an old article I wrote, for example, I know it's still there in the archive.

Way 3: My capture process is simpler

I've consolidated my capture process so I save almost everything into Notion.

From there I can process everything and move my notes into Obsidian as needed.

Now I don't have to think about where something goes, I just clip it into Notion to process later.

Way 4: My new mantra for note-taking is "how can I make this as useful as possible for my future self?"

I'm reviewing my old book notes and it's amazing how unhelpful they are.

It's almost like a direct copy and paste from the book itself without any more thinking done. I haven't processed the information I learned in a way that's actually useful for me.

I'm now improving my old notes with this new mantra in mind so I can create notes I'll actually use in the future.

Michelle Mac

On the journey to full-time online creator ๐Ÿš€ Follow me to learn about creation, design, and productivity.