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The top Notion tips, tricks and keyboard shortcuts

The top Notion tips, tricks and keyboard shortcuts

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Have you tried Notion, the new all-purpose app for productivity, task management, and knowledge management? Its power lies in the ability to merge the functionality of countless apps into a single platform. Plus, its clean and sleek design makes it a delight to use.

But like any growing child, it’s got its share of issues: it’s slow, search is wonky, and it’s hard to navigate on mobile. Here are some shortcuts, tips, and tricks to keep your Notion zippy and productive. And please visit notion.courses, the premier learning destination for all things Notion.

Keyboard shortcuts

When you’re on desktop, keyboard shortcuts can help you fly through your documents and tables.

Our favorite keyboard shortcuts

  • Press cmd/ctrl + enter to open/close a toggle
  • Press cmd/ctrl + \\ to close “file explorer”
  • Press cmd/ctrl + p to open search or jump to a recently viewed page.
  • Press cmd/ctrl + 1 or 2 to change workspaces (which you can re-order with the mouse).
  • Type /turn at the beginning or end of a block to turn it into a different type of block. You’ll see a list of choices pop up, such as /turnh2 or /turntoggle

Our Top Navigation Shortcuts

  • Press cmd/ctrl + n to create a new page (desktop apps only).
  • Press cmd/ctrl + shift + n or use cmd/ctrl + click to open a new Notion window.
  • Press cmd/ctrl + [ to go back a page.
  • Press cmd/ctrl + ] to go forward a page.

Our Top Editing shortcuts

  • Type *, -, or + followed by space to create a bulleted list.
  • Type [] to create a to-do checkbox. (There’s no space in between.)
  • Type 1. followed by space to create a numbered list.
  • Type # or ## or ### followed by space to create an H1-H3 heading.
  • Type > followed by space to create a toggle list.
  • Type " followed by space to create a quote block.

Navigating Notion’s speed issues

Let’s face it: Notion’s lack of speed (especially on mobile) is a huge deterrent for many users. But we can hack up a few workarounds to maintain our efficacy.

​Using pagename prefixes

​I use set prefixes to name my frequently access pages and tables. I use ​”JJ_table_name” ​for my master tables:

and ​”KK_page_name”​ for pages that I frequently reference.

That way, when your search begins with those prefixes, it will ​rule out​ all the other pages and get you to your desired page asap.

Using “emoji taxonomy

I borrowed this idea from Josh Levy at Presstige.io  who employs a consistent emoji set to match a page’s intent. Customize these emojis to your own use cases, just remember that the ​key is consistency.

Here’s Josh’s taxonomy:

​Navigating Tables on Mobile

Tables on mobile are hard. Not only is it a lot of data to navigate, the structure of rows and columns doesn’t lend itself to sequential processing (like a paragraph). One workaround: defining ​mobile specific views.

Create these views on desktop and focus on the following screen-saving approaches:

  • Limit the data to check boxes and tags (if possible)
  • Re-size the columns to be as narrow as possible (as it will port-over to mobile)
  • Label the view with a ? emoji so that you can find it quickly

Here’s the mobile view that I use to process my reading list:

Next up, you’ll learn the differences between Notion and Evernote.​

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Khe Hy
[email protected]

Khe Hy is the creator of RadReads.