Using Index Cards to Build Your Secondbrain



The humble index notecard can be super powerful for your creativity.

I use them all the time.

The benefit of notecards is that they can be shuffled through quickly and easily.

  • Browsing for insights.
  • Reminders of words of wisdom (rarely if ever, mine 🙈)
  • Looking for connections between ideas

I store them in my William Hannah folder. Again, easy to flip through and easy to resort in new order as new insights emerge.

I've been largely inspired by Niklas Luhmann and his Zettlekasten system.

Luhmann published 50 books and over 600 articles over a relatively short period of time. He claimed to never run out of ideas and never had to 'stare at a blank page' as he had his Zettlekasten method (essentially jotting notes on slips of paper / cards that he would arrange in order (continually finding new links between ideas as he added to the system) and adding identifiers to the corners of the notes to interlink the ideas). I think he amassed around 90,000 notes!

This system is well worth looking up.