Using them properly

If you’ve always been a little “old school” with keeping notes on little paper sticky notes taped around your desk, you’ll love the fact that Windows 10 offers the handy Sticky Notes utility.

Instead of sticking paper sticky notes on your monitor or on the wall near your desk, you can stick virtual sticky notes on your Windows desktop. And if you’re using multiple monitors, that means plenty of space to keep all your quick notes!

In this article, you’ll learn how to do more than just paste those on your screen. We’ll look at how you can use Sticky Notes on Windows to boost your organization and productivity.

Get started with Sticky Notes on Windows 10

To get started, select the Start menu and type sticky notes

You should immediately notice something interesting about this popup. Not only can you open the app here, but you can also:

  • Quickly create a new note
  • View your note list
  • Make changes to the app settings

This is actually one of two ways you can create new sticky notes. Next to the Start menu, you will see the app pinned to the taskbar once you launch the app. You can right click on the icon there to access the same features.

Let’s explore basic sticky notes controls once you’ve created your first sticky note.

At the bottom, you’ll see a row of buttons that allow you to format text or images on the note.

Among which:

  • In bold
  • Italics
  • underline
  • Strikethrough
  • Bulleted List
  • Add an image

You can also quickly select the plus icon in the top left corner to create a new sticky note on your desktop.

Finally, in the three-dot menu at the top right, you can delete the note itself by selecting Delete noteor view your entire list of sticky notes by selecting note list

The notes list contains every sticky note you’ve ever created (and hasn’t deleted), with a handy search field to find the sticky note you’re looking for, even if you’ve collected hundreds of them.

If you select the gear icon at the top right of the Notes List window, you’ll see a few other settings you can adjust in the Sticky Notes app.

Among which:

  • Enable Insights: Enable the feature that allows Cortana to scan your notes for information or add new notes for you.
  • Confirm before delete: Enables a confirmation popup when you delete a sticky note, so you don’t accidentally delete one.
  • Colour: Choose the color scheme that matches your overall Windows theme.

Now that you have a solid understanding of how Sticky Notes works on Windows 10 and how to use it, let’s take a look at some of the ways to make them even more useful.

Access notes from other devices

While Sticky Notes are very useful on one device, they are even more useful if you can access the same notes from all the devices you use.

To make sure you can access your Sticky Notes on all devices, make sure you’re signed in to your Microsoft account from within the Sticky Notes application.

To do this, open the note list we mentioned above and select the gear icon to open Settings. If you haven’t signed in yet, you’ll see a . at the top of the Settings window Login button here. Select it.

Sign in to your Microsoft account. Now you are ready to access the same notes on all your other devices.

Access Sticky Notes on Android or iPhone

On your mobile device, Android or iPhone, you’ll find your sticky notes when you’re signed in to the OneNote mobile application. OneNote is available for both android and iPhone

Open the OneNote app and tap sticky notes bottom right.

This will open your Sticky Notes list on your mobile device. You can edit your existing sticky notes or tap the plus icon at the bottom right to create a new one.

Anything you edit, add, or delete here will automatically sync with the sticky notes you’ve placed on your computer’s desktop at home or work.

This is one of the most convenient ways to make sure things you’ve added, like grocery lists or to-do lists, are accessible on the go. You don’t have to be tied to your computer to see all the things you need to do.

Tips and tricks for getting the most out of Sticky Notes

There are several things you can do when using Sticky Notes on Windows 10 to keep them as organized as possible.

1. Use colors to organize categories

With Windows Sticky Notes, you have 10 colors to work with. Think of these as 10 possible categories you could use to organize your notes.

For example, let’s say you want a collection of notes for the following categories. You can assign these different colors.

  • Household related projects: Gray
  • Work related tasks: Blue
  • Suitability: Yellow
  • Finance: Green
  • Hobbies: Pink

Once you’ve chosen your category’s colors, go through your existing notes and select the three dots in the top right corner to select the color you want to assign.

Go through all your existing sticky notes and apply the appropriate colors.

The fastest way to create a new note is to select the plus icon at the top right of any sticky note in the same category.

2. Resize to Save Desktop Space

Another important thing to keep in mind is that sticky notes can take up a lot of space. We’ll overlap them in the next section, which can help with this. But another good thing to do is to resize the notes so that they are not larger than necessary.

To resize sticky notes, hover over an edge and click and drag to resize.

Keep in mind that if you resize it too small, you’ll lose the formatting bar at the bottom when you click on the note later. So resize it just enough so that only the note text and formatting bar are shown.

3. Overlap notes to save even more space

You will recognize a note later by the title you have made for it. So you can overlap all your sticky notes to save a lot of desktop space.

To do this, just drag each bottom sticky note over the one above it until all you can see of the top one is the title.

You’ll start to see how many notes you can put on your desktop when you start overlapping them all like this.

Remark: If you want to work on an individual note (edit or otherwise), move it from the stack. This prevents the notes from being hidden underneath. When you’re ready to add it back to the stack, just place it at the bottom and slide all the bottom ones to fill the space.

4. Using Shortcuts in Sticky Notes

There are a few things you type in Sticky Notes that instantly turn into functional links.

One of them is URLs. These will turn blue and become a clickable link that you can select to open that URL in your default web browser.

Another cool feature is that when you type in an address, it also turns into a blue link.

However, instead of opening the link in a URL, the Sticky Note will show a button asking if you want to see the address. Just select View address to see the location in a Microsoft Maps pop-up window.

From this window, you can save the address to your Maps app or get directions to that location. This is especially useful when you’re viewing your notes on your mobile app and need to drive to that location.

Another cool feature is that if you type in a phone number, it also turns into a link. When you select the link, you will see a Telephone call the button appears at the bottom.

Select this on your computer and it will ask which application you want to call. Do it on your mobile and you can make calls right away with your Phone app.

Sticky notes on Windows 10 are simple yet useful

The bottom line is that the Windows Sticky Notes feature looks almost too minimalistic at first glance. But if you start using it and spread it out on your desktop, you’ll find that they help you stay more organized and efficient.

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