🔗 Automatically add backlinks to your notes

A quick crash-course on backlinks, followed by how to add them using AI.

In this email, we’ll tell you how to automatically add backlinks with AI. But first, a brief crash course on backlinks.

A backlink is a link connecting two notes. It forms an association between the notes, just like your brain associates memories and thoughts.

You typically add backlinks to people, places, things, etc. A good rule of thumb is if it’s a proper noun or starts with a capital, backlink it!

Adding a backlink to a person’s name

Backlinks organize your notes in a way that mirrors your brain. It involves significantly less cognitive friction than organizing things into folders. They also help you form new associations between your notes.

Over time, this builds up a “map” of your thoughts and ideas all connected.

Sample map of connected notes

You can also see every other note something is connected to at the bottom of each note.

Backlinks are usually created using the @ sign or double brackets [[like this]], but will depend on the tool being used. If there isn’t yet an existing note, creating a backlink will create a new note.

You can also use an AI prompt to add backlinks automatically! The AI prompt used below has the AI find all the proper nouns, and surrounds them with double brackets so you don’t have to.

Automatically adding backlinks using an AI prompt

You can run this prompt on any text in your notes! It comes built into Reflect, but you can also copy it from this spreadsheet.

  1. If you’re coming from a folder system, there is a bit of a learning curve. Remember that they work very similar to normal links on a landing page.

  2. When in doubt, add a backlink.

  3. You can tweak the AI prompt based on what you need (if it consistently backlinks something you don’t want it to, simply ask it not to).

  4. It’s much easier to use backlinks when using a daily note format (i.e having a new ‘home base’ note for each day). Simply log your day and backlink along the way.

  5. You can choose to add info into the backlinked notes. If it’s a person, you might want to include who they are, their contact info, etc.

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