Organize Everything With The LIFT principle

Discover the LIFT principle and why you should apply it to better organize data, information and knowledge

Organize Everything With The LIFT principle
The LIFT principle is a simple mnemonic to keep in mind when organizing information. Image generated using DALL-E

In this article, I will introduce the LIFT principle for organizing digital information.

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I also cover it in my courses:

Obsidian Starter Course A course about Obsidian and Personal Knowledge Management. It teaches: * Everything about Obsidian (e.g., the user interface, key features, plugins, automation, tips and tricks, etc). * The Markdown syntax * Personal Knowledge Management techniques and principles (e.g., Johnny Decimal, PARA, Zettelkasten, LIFT, Atomic Notes, Maps of Content,

What is the LIFT principle?

The LIFT principle was introduced by Google as part of the AngularJS and Angular style guides. It is a code organization best practice for software developers. But in reality, this principle applies really well to Personal Knowledge Management (PKM) and Information Management (IM) in general.

LIFT is an acronym for:

  • Locate
  • Identify
  • Flat structure as long as we can
  • Try to stay dry

This principle's goal is to ensure that we keep files and folder structures as flat as possible in order for us to be able to quickly locate and identify what we need. Also, it recommends applying the "Don't Repeat Yourself" (DRY) principle and thus avoiding duplicating information as much as possible.

Whenever you organize information, whether it is code, personal or work information, try to keep the LIFT principle in mind.


In this article, I've introduced the LIFT principle, a recommendation to keep your organization systems as simple and as flat as possible in order to always be able to quickly locate and identify what you need.

That's it for today! ✨