The notion helps bring things together, but the application needs fixing

If you wake up thinking “if I could organize my whole life properly, maybe I could put up with it a little”, then Notion is for you.

It starts off as just another productivity and organization app, but Notion stands out for several reasons: it’s free to use, allows endless customization, is ad-free, and the web app syncs with the app. corresponding mobile. transparently.

Notion lets you create lists and trackers, capture items from the web, and organize them in an easy-to-access way. On top of that, you can use it to take notes, create learning plans and mood boards, and track your goals.

With over 50 lakh downloads on the Google Play Store and a 3.8 out of 5 star rating, Notion tops the charts, ranking high on the list of productivity apps.

It can be used for everything from running a business to personal tasks. If you’re running out of ideas on how to get organized, you can choose from its template library that lists hundreds of organizational workbooks.

How it works

You can get started on Notion’s website or directly in the app, which is available on both the App Store and Google Play Store, although I’d recommend checking out the web app first just because the customizations offered may seem overwhelming at first on the mobile app.

On its web app, setting up pages and creating your workspace is a breeze.

Notion comes with a few fixed templates to get you started. Click through these initial tabs to understand what you can do, the type of pages you can add, the “blocks” you can deploy, and other ways to customize the experience to suit your needs.

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Each page can have any number of different “blocks”, which are really just small customizations. This includes many options ranging from to-do lists to timeline templates.

I prefer to have a master page for each facet of my life – like work, life, travel, and music – which then has subpages below it. The master page gives me a quick overview of everything, including my daily tasks (like a prompt that reminds me to keep a journal, for example).

My main “work” sheet, for example, has links to several sub-pages – work-in-progress histories, OKR tracking, source list – as well as a nifty to-do list that I update every morning. It also has a calendar where I set myself deadlines and add details of scheduled calls/interviews.

You can also set reminders for yourself on Notion using the ‘@’ function.

Our opinion

Notion ticks all the boxes for me. It’s most of what I’d want from an organization app, and I appreciate the depth of customization it offers.

Although the initial setup may seem daunting at first, you quickly understand the ins and outs of the platform. A tutorial or walkthrough would probably have helped.

If you’re still looking for a quick tutorial, there are several on YouTube to help get you started in the world of the app. But be aware that there will be a small learning curve with the app.

Templates are very useful. Although some are paid, most of them are free and you can quickly create your own pre-designed templates by adding/removing elements.

You make each page reflect your personality by adding small design elements, like the cover at the top of each page, for example. I’ve added artwork that I admire to my workbooks and pages, and coming back to the platform feels like coming back to your own online space.

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There are some minor differences in the user interface of the mobile app compared to the web app, but they are easy to grasp quickly. That being said, the iOS app can be glitchy. Sometimes scrolling stops working on longer pages and synchronization (from webpage to app or vice versa) takes time. Oftentimes, customizations like font colors or headers don’t reflect on the app, which can ruin the experience.

A big plus would also be if the app were more offline friendly, so it could sync all pages created in no-network mode, online once you have access to wifi or network services.

Still, the app is much better than its competitors, including Evernote and Todoist, which I never got to customize as much as possible on Notion.

It became my go-to for organization and set the bar high for any other apps that might come up.

About Stuart M. McFarland

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