In the 2010 movie Buried, Ryan Reynolds plays a truck driver living in Iraq. He is caught in a hostile attack and wakes up buried alive in a coffin. While you will hopefully never find yourself buried alive, I’ll bet you can relate to the idea of feeling overwhelmed. We encounter vast amounts of information every day: emails, blog posts, text messages, creative ideas, meeting notes, receipts and invoices, and so much more.
If you’re a church leader, your success is related to your ability to process and find information. Fortunately, the good people at Evernote have given us one of the best organizational tools available today. Evernote can help accelerate your leadership in four specific ways:
1. Evernote helps you capture your ideas and information.
Have you ever been away from your computer and needed a way to record a great idea for a sermon illustration, lesson, blog post, book, or other type of content? With Evernote, you never again have to worry about losing ideas. You can write text, record audio, or take a picture and save it into a note with the mobile app (or the desktop version). Everything is synced to your account, which is accessible on any device or the web. You can also send emails directly into your Evernote account.
One of the most helpful features is the Evernote Web Clipper browser extension, which lets you easily clip pictures, articles, and entire web pages directly into your Evernote account. You can add your own highlights and notes and share the note via email or social media.
2. Evernote helps you clear your desk and your mind
Although we live in a digital world, we still deal with lots of paper every day. If you have piles of paper cluttering up your desk or briefcase, you can easily transfer this information to Evernote. The easiest way is to use a scanner. I personally use the Fujitsu ScanSnap s1300, a great little scanner that works perfectly with Evernote. You simply put the paper in the scanner, push the button, and it sends a PDF file directly into Evernote.
A cluttered desk usually represents a cluttered mind, and the simply act of cleaning and organizing your information has a powerful psychological affect.
3. Evernote helps you organize your content
Once you begin using Evernote to store various kinds of content, you can easily organize it with notebooks. When you’re working on a project, you often have pictures, documents, handwritten notes, emails, and other related items spread across different apps and locations. Consolidate as much info as possible within an Evernote notebook and have it available in one place. This mirrors how we actually think and work.
4. Evernote helps you find your stuff
What happens to all your content once you get it into Evernote? Fortunately, Evernote’s incredible search features will help you locate your ideas once they’re stored in the app. I currently have over 7,500 individual notes in Evernote. This includes text, pictures, scanned documents (including handwriting), attached files, and other types of data. But I can almost always find what I’m looking for within a few seconds.
These are only four of the many ways Evernote can help you get organized and be a more effective church leader. In nearly two decades of writing, teaching, and ministry leadership, I can honestly say that Evernote is one of the most important tools I use. It has become an indispensable part of my daily life.
If you want to harness the incredible organizational power of Evernote in your church and your life, the best place to start is the brand-new resource 30 Days of Evernote for Churches. For the past several years I’ve been helping students, leaders and pastors learn how to use Evernote, and I’ve condensed everything I do into this guide.
The book is divided into four parts:
- In Part 1: Evernote Basics you will learn the basics of getting your account set up and how the Evernote desktop app is organized.
- In Part 2: Getting Your Stuff Into Evernote you will learn a number of ways to get your content into Evernote, including scanning, emailing, using the Web Clipper, audio, typing, using speech-to-text, and much more.
- In Part 3: Search, Mobile and Other Evernote Features you will learn about additional features of Evernote, including search capabilities, the mobile app, keeping your data secure, sharing and collaborating, and the Skitch and Penultimate apps.
- In Part 4: Using Evernote for Ministry you will learn how to apply what you’ve learned to specific ministry areas and tasks: preaching and teaching, administration, pastoral care, worship, organization, finances, writing and blogging, travel, and more.
I’ve also included two special bonuses for everyone who purchases 30 Days of Evernote for Churches:
- A complete Evernote video course. This course covers all of the concepts in Part 1-3 of this book.
- Interviews of church leaders. Kent Sanders has interviewed three church leaders, each in different positions, about how they use Evernote in their ministries.
Whether you are a beginner or advanced user, 30 Days of Evernote for Churches will offer practical and detailed tips and strategies you won’t find anywhere else.
If you have any questions about the book, or about Evernote in general, I would love to help. Just leave a comment here or send me a message on Twitter @kentsanders.
Get 30 Days of Evernote for Churches now from ChurchMag Press!