Tim Daulby


In Tiago Forte's book, "Building a Second Brain", he talks about an organisational tool called "PARA" - Projects, Areas, Resources and Archive. Essentially these become the buckets under which you organise everything. So for me:

And it's working well! It took me a while to understand what is a project, what is an area and what folders would be worth having in resources. It might help others to explain how I got there, and give my current ones as an example. I'm no expert, I haven't finished the book, so this is just my current understanding. Hopefully these will get clearer in time.


This is things you are working on that will get finished, i.e. you can tell when it's done. If it can't be completed it might be an area or a dream. Here's the projects I have going (Mar '24):

Tiago recommends having 10-15 projects. Enough that you're not bored, not too many that you're spread thin. This is the fastest changing part of my PARA organisation as projects get completed more often than areas of responsibility change. I might update this list, but if not, my now page usually mentions some of my current projects.


These are the parts of my life that don't have a deadline, but do create tasks, files or notes. Here's a selection of them:

Tiago has >30 areas in his second brain, and I am steadily realising what the areas of my responsibility are and adding buckets within my second brain.


The way I'm thinking about this is storing material that doesn't relate to a current project or area of responsibility but might be interesting in the future. I'm trying to be a bit minimalist, not storing absolutely everything, so it has to fit into one of my areas of interest. Here are the current buckets that I consider myself to be interested in:


Regularly I finish projects, and then, they're moved to the Archive. Sometimes an Area changes, i.e. because we move house, and then it comes to the Archive. Rarely do my lifelong interests change, but if that happens, the resources would also come to the Archive. I've chosen to have P, A, R folders within my Archive too so that I can find discarded things more easily.


And that's my current PARA setup! Hopefully that inspires some thoughts to get organised in your own setup if you decide to start using PARA.

If you want to get started with PARA for yourself, I'd recommend Tiago's Youtube series, Organize Your Digital Life With The PARA Method