Nick Seitz - Obsidian day one starterpack

Prune processes with unnecessary friction, like busywork and over-complicated things.


Write one-idea notes with propositional titles

Notes should be atomic note, one idea per note. The notes are easier to link together as well!

By distilling down a note into a single claim, it will help you focus the writing, and when scanning a list of titles or trying to write a link, you’ll be able to retrieve a claim from memory much faster than a vague suggestive title.

Let structure emerge

If you’re overly rigid it will create unnecessary friction and overhead. It might also block you from actually coming up with new insights and ideas.

Let notes (ideas) bump into each other

If all you are writing in your notes are basic facts, you’re just making a worse version of Wikipedia! Instead add unexpected facts and ideas to your notes. Adding related notes to MoC also adds value over time

Break tasks into discrete steps

Feel free to develop your notes over time, they don’t have to be perfect right away. For me this is relevant for the article notes I make, perhaps at first glance I don’t need much detail from a particular source but I can add that later if needed in another project.

Take small bites every day

It takes time to build valuable things, don’t expect your PKM vault to be exceptional from day one.


Write overstuffed notes

They will be very hard to find in the future. Instead, extract the key insight with a propositional title and add it to a relevant MOC/tag etc.

Box yourself in with rigid structures

Tags can be a trap because you might be tempted to get everything in just the right place. He also thinks Luhmann’s original Zettelkasten method with long prefixes is too complicated. Links and MoC are a more efficient digital solution.

It can be solved by propositional titles and atomic notes. Why you are linking something should be very obvious from the link itself, or you add some kind of context like “agrees with/contrasts” etc.

Don’t expect to finish everything

This type of work inevitably creates a longer todo-list than you can tick off, that’s the nature of research projects.

Doing good work slowly is better than doing shoddy work quickly

You have to be selective what you add to your vault, time is limited! Not everything that you read/hear/watch has to be added to Obsidian.

Don’t expect a day when you will be fully caught up

Make incremental progress each day, and acknowledge that building a valuable vault of ideas takes time and effort.