I’ll be teaching an online course about how I organize my digital life with Google tools (google drive, docs, spreadsheets, chrome, calendar).
Sign up here.
Here are some background thoughts in preparation.
The way I think about organizing my information is a hierarchy:
Framework > Courses/Books > Content > Research
The Framework is my overall philosophy about my work. (I've also taught an online course about How To Create Frameworks.)
Underneath the Framework is my series of courses/books that detail parts of my framework.
And my courses or books is the resting place for my best content.
The process of creating Content, then, spurs productive research. (This is different from research that's done for personal curiosity or hobbies.)
Everything is in the Cloud
All of my information is stored online: documents and spreadsheets in Google, my tasks in Todoist, and some content in private Facebook client groups.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve had computers crash on me several times. I’ve lost files due to crashes. Many clients have experienced this too.
Yet, I’ve never lost a single file that I put into Google Drive. Increasingly, putting files in “the cloud” (online) is more reliable than keeping them on our physical computers.
Plus, when my files are online, I can access them with any device, anywhere I am, as long as I have my password.
It’s been years since I’ve used Microsoft Word. Instead, when I want to write, I open up a new google doc (try it -- doc.new -- a handy link!)
As I write, I know that Google is securely backing up my data several times a minute. And I can easily find the document again in Google Drive by searching a few words.
Basic Online Security
I’ve never been hacked.
Yet, I’m not a computer security expert. I know only a few things:
(1) Passwords should not be so obvious as 1234 or ABCD or contain your birthdate. Even a unique word that is seldom used, that has special meaning for you, is fine.
(2) Before logging into a website -- any website that requires a password -- I double-check the URL. I make sure that the word just before .com is the correct website word. Malicious hackers try to trick us (it’s called “phishing”) by setting up websites that look just like a legit website, but you can tell it’s not, by looking at the URL.
Spreadsheets Organize Everything
A spreadsheet organizes my client records.
Another spreadsheet organizes all my content.
Another spreadsheet manages my financial life.
Whereas a regular document can be a good creativity tool (writing and brainstorming), a spreadsheet is essential for tracking information in an organized way, from which you can create charts and graphs.
It's been more than a decade since I've touched Microsoft Excel. Instead, I only use Google Spreadsheets. Here is a handy link for creating a new spreadsheet quickly: sheets.new. (The file will be private to you, and located in your secure Google Drive.)
In the upcoming course, I’ll show you some of my spreadsheets and answer your questions.
Most of the Day is Spent in Chrome
Because I create in Google Docs and Organize with Google Sheets, every single document or sheet has its own unique URL.
This is highly convenient because I then create Bookmarks in Google Chrome, and organize those bookmarks into folders.
Therefore, whenever I work, I simply need to open Google Chrome, and all my bookmarks are there, that take me to the necessary documents and spreadsheets.
In the course I’ll also be showing you how I organize my Chrome bookmarks.
Go here and you'll be able to ask me any questions or to sign up for the course.
George Kao is a Marketing Coach for small business owners, especially solopreneurs such as Coaches and Mentors. He focuses on ethical & effective ways to grow one's platform and build true livelihood.
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