Reducing My Browser Tabs

I used to have a lot of browser tabs. I’d see something interesting and middle click the link to read later. I’d open so many that I’d eventually have to restart the browser. I restore my previous session in Firefox, but I don’t have Firefox load the tabs until I select them, freeing the precious memory while keeping my to-read list intact.

I always have around 6 to 8 tabs opened and pinned. Gmail, Google Calendar, Facebook, Twitter, Google+. Sometimes Pandora. Then after that, I could’ve had anywhere from 10 to 40 open. Anytime I researched something, I’d open another 2-10 tabs. If I didn’t find what I was looking for, they’d remain open for me to come back to at some point.

After doing the GTD thing for a couple of weeks, though, I’ve realized that those tabs were subtly causing stress. I’d look at the tabs and think, “Ugh, I don’t feel like reading any of them right now.” My tabs were just one more todo list for my mind to keep track of.

With my Evernote GTD system, I can now close all of those tabs and file them into Evernote. I can then use my To-Read saved search, which allows me to scan a single list and choose what currently seems interesting.

Being able to scan everything at once is important. Much like house clutter, multiple todo lists stress you out, which compounds over time. It’s better to offload the burden of remembering into one system that you trust.

I have the Evernote Web Clipper Firefox extension that makes it easy to file into Evernote. That is, if I don’t just want to close it. The extension adds the page right to my !Inbox notebook where I can process it appropriately later (it’s good to process notes in your inbox in batches). I might even just copy the url into Evernote:

  1. Copy the url (F6, ctrl-c)
  2. close the tab (ctrl-w)
  3. alt-tab to Evernote
  4. create a new note (ctrl-n)
  5. tag the note (F3, *Action, To-Read)
  6. file it into the 2. Next notebook (alt-n v 2 <enter>)

Now that I have an easy way to store all the websites and articles I want to read in one place, it’s one less thing I stress about.