WNW - The Daily Note

Explore the value of the Daily Note.

WNW - The Daily Note

In my daily struggle to manage my adult ADHD life, I have found incredible value in having a "daily note."

What is a Daily Note?

A Daily Note is a note named after today's date (usually in the form: YYYY-MM-DD, so for example 2024-03-04). It is a repository for all the little bits of information that might flow my way throughout the day.

Why It Matters:

The human brain is an association engine, not a filing cabinet. And one of our best associations is "what happened to me when." Step one of finding anything can be as simple as remembering where or when you were when you learned something or took a note. Having notes with at least a link in time, can lead you to finding missing information. You can also use _other_ bits of information, recorded the same day to lead you to a lost piece of information you are trying to track down.


What is Julia's phone number? I was at the EO Learning event when she gave it to me. I find that event, then the note for that day and voila, I find her number in my daily note next to the cryptic but quick letter "J", which is nearly useless for search.

Big Picture:

  • Some note taking apps allow your Daily Notes to include templates. For example, mine includes a daily checklist of habits.
  • You can also create FUTURE daily notes to hold information you will need at a future date. This is very similar to David Allen's 43 folders.
  • You can also create Weekly, and Monthly Notes to consult every Monday, or the first of every month.

What goes in a Daily Note?

Anything and everything. I frequently store:

  • Web links
  • Quotes
  • Snippets of text from web pages.
  • Todo's here (I don't)
  • Habits checklists
  • Ideas
  • Recipes
  • Peoples contact information.
  • Pictures (of business cards!)
  • Meeting notes

Pretty much anything you don't want to forget.

How To:

  1. Every morning when you wake up. Start a new daily note. (For me this is as simple as opening my note app, it does the "automagically")
  2. Throughout the day, add to the daily note When you run across something you don't want to forget.

I recommend use a note app that syncs between your main computer and your phone. This ends up being a powerful way to get photos from your phone to a computer in context. If you use Mac and Windows like me, this is magic. I can get photos from my iPhone to my Windows desktop with Obsidian Sync almost instantly.

Think of the Daily Note as the short-term memory for your second brain.


A Daily Note is a simple powerful tool to help you capture and organize virtually any kind of information in the order you experienced it.

Go Deeper:

🔗 Here is a video on how to setup a daily note using Obsidian. https://youtu.be/fmTiS32hkTU?si=B7y-tLn7p1jB6YUv