Currently, I am in the process of applying to residencies and the number of files and emails I’ve saved on my computer is mind-blowing. Many years ago, I learned my lesson about saving files directly on my computer without backing it up. I subsequently lost many of the photos I had edited, MCAT supplements, and my beloved music, so I developed a secure method of keeping files ever since. Below, I list some of my favorite apps and tips to keep organized when you feel overwhelmed!
- Dropbox is the most accessible app/website I have ever come across. You can access your files no matter where you are or what device you are using! All you have to do is download the app on your computer and devices with an email. The great part is, it automatically syncs so you can access your files immediately, anywhere!
- Notability is an app available through the Apple store that allows you to write on any document. I loved using this during my first two years of medical school because our school was pretty PowerPoint heavy. It also helped with reading research articles because I could zoom up, highlight, and write my notes instead of printing 30+ pages and ruffling through them.
- The great part about this app is the ability to send the documents via email to other people and if you wanted to save it and view on your computer, you can sync it up to your Dropbox app!
- Saving your Outlook emails
- Did you know that you can save your emails on your computer? Instead of opening up your email account and searching for an important email that pertains to an application, you can drag the email into any folder on your computer. This was so helpful when I worked in research and had important information that I pulled up often.
- Organizing your files by date
- Back when I did research in undergrad, I learned so much about organization from my research coordinator, Sandy. Clinical research requires saving many drafts of papers, so you had to develop a way to quickly find them.
- The best way to label is by date, in the format: year.monthdate_filename
- For example: 2017.0720_Amanda Application
- Most folders open up alphabetically and numerically so this will help you find your files easily. It also saves you from labeling files, “Personal Statement Draft 12143432.”
I hope these tips help reduce your stress just a little less!