Evernote and GTD (4): Tags, Saved Searches and Premium


When I first started out with Evernote in a GTD way I struggled with using the rights features for the right GTD use. I tried using the tags as contexts but this didn’t work out in a way I liked. I have to be honest that early on the tags feature of Evernote was somewhat unpredictable in my case where I mixed the Windows and Mac client together with the iPhone app and the occasional use of the web interface. But even after those glitches were solved by the guys from Evernote I still didn’t completely trust that system. Not that it wasn’t reliable but it just didn’t work in my workflow.

In the meantime I have found a great way for tags in my GTD setup. I use the tags as temporary labels for project support material entries. I use it for web clippings, all kinds of documents (see below about Premium). It is my experience that I have at most about 20 active tags. When the project is done I simply delete the tag.

Saved Searches

This feature of Evernote is used for several lists that I use every now and then. I have a saved search that lists all the notes that contain interesting books, films or music. Also Saved searches provides me with a list of restaurants. I have for each saved search a dedicated word that is used for generating the list from all my notes across all notebooks. For books to read the keyword is simply: booktip.

Premium feature

There was one thing in my GTD workflow that didn’t quite worked. In a lot of my actions and projects I have to deal with documents, spreadsheets and other files. With the premium (aka payed) version of Evernote you can use these kind of files in your notes. What I particulary like is the ability to mail documents to your Evernote account. I explained the feature of mailing to your Evernote account in an earlier post on Evernote and GTD.

When I receive a document that I need to review I mail in to my Evernote account address. Before sending the mail I change the subject line of the forwarded mail with a meaningful action like this:

Read quarterly report for the budget meeting.

All mailed entries are routed to my Evernote Inbox and are processed from within Evernote. The automatic syncing of documents is just amazing. Always the most actual version of the document is available on whatever device or computer I work on.

This is the last entry in this series on Evernote and GTD. Since this is my primary GTD setup, every now and then I will write about new cool things I have figured out. For your convenience I have listed the entries below:

Evernote and GTD (1)
Evernote and GTD (2): Collecting
Evernote and GTD (3): Collecting with the iPhone

This is a post in a series on GTD with Evernote:

Part 1: Evernote and GTD
Part 2: Collecting
Part 3: Collecting with the iPhone
Part 4: Tags, Saved Searches and Premium
Part 5: Revisited

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