How to make your iPhone remember things for you

HiTechMomGeek Out, Master Your Gadgets

What was that thing that I thought when I was doing that other thing?

The best ideas tend to come when you’re driving, taking a shower, or doing some other mindless task when there’s not a place to write anything down. Am I right?

So how’s a person supposed to remember these mind gems at these inopportune times? It’s not like you can grab a notebook and a pen while you’re flying down the highway or grab your phone when you’re in the middle of a shower to record your brilliance!

ideas while driving

I just had the best idea! But I have no place to write down this idea! OMG life is RUFF.

In this article, I’ll give you a couple of very simple ways to remember random thoughts by using your iPhone with Siri. Plus, you’ll learn an automated (and awesomely nerdy) way of taking those reminders and moving them into Evernote.

“Hey Siri”

Did you know that you don’t even need to touch your phone to activate Siri? You can set it up so that you simply say “hey Siri” instead of grabbing the phone and holding the home button.

turn on hey siri feature

Make Siri listen to you all the time

Activating this feature will make the suggestions in this article easier to perform. As long as your phone is plugged in whenever you’re driving or doing other things, you can just say “hey Siri” and she’ll start listening.

(On some newer iPhone models, your phone doesn’t even need to be plugged in, just close enough to hear you.)

To turn this feature on, go to settings – general – Siri – and switch on “Allow Hey Siri”

turn on allow hey siri

Settings – General – Allow “Hey Siri” and follow the prompts

“Siri, make a note”

When inspiration strikes, you can simply say, “hey Siri! Make a note” and Siri will ask you what you want to make a note about. Siri will then create a new note in the notes app that contains the text of what you said.

siri take a note

Take a note!

“Add to my — list”

You can also tell Siri to add to a list that you have set up in the reminders app. You’ll need to have a special list set up just for this purpose. Go ahead and open reminders and create a new list.

Let’s say you called your new list “random thoughts.” Just say, “hey Siri! Add to my ‘random thoughts’ list.”

She will then ask you what you want her to remember.

siri add reminder to list

Make Siri add a reminder to a list


I found that using Siri to keep track of my random thoughts was very useful. The only problem was that I rarely opened my notes or reminders app to look back at the thoughts. I actually considered setting a reminder that said, “remember to look at your reminders.” It’s just not something that I do on a regular basis.

However, I use Evernote on my Mac all the time. It’s open all day and I keep track of almost everything in this application. I thought, “hmm, wouldn’t it be great if I could just get Siri to put these thoughts into Evernote?” to the rescue!

IFTTT stands for If This Then That. It’s a website were you can automate certain processes to make things happen automatically. Learn more about it here:

I have a recipe on IFTTT that performs the following action:

IF This: I add a reminder to my the list in my reminders app that’s called “Evernote list”

THEN that: Take that reminder and copy it to the end of a note in Evernote.

Why is this cool? Because you can’t use Siri to add something directly to Evernote, but you can make Siri add something to your reminder and then let IFTTT move it over to Evernote for you automatically. To use this recipe, create a free account, add the “reminders” and the “evernote” channels, and then edit this recipe to your liking:

IFTTT Recipe: Add reminders to Evernote connects ios-reminders to evernote

You can also experiment with other channels and have your reminders save to a google doc, a spreadsheet, or any of their other connected services.

I hope that using Siri will allow you to remember all of those important thoughts that would otherwise forget! If you would like to receive an email whenever a new post is written on, be sure to subscribe below:

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