Notion lets you easily rename and customize anything in your workspace. But should you rename pages and properties inside of templates like Ultimate Brain and Creator’s Companion?
- Pages are completely fine to rename.
- Properties in databases should not be renamed, as this can make updating your template using my upgrade guides much harder.
Why Shouldn’t I Rename Database Properties?
Usually, renaming a property in a Notion database is perfectly fine to do. When you rename a property, any other properties that reference it are automatically updated as well.
For example, here’s what happens to the Wait (Parent) formula property when I rename the Snooze property to Sneeze:
As you can see from the screenshot, the formula’s property reference has automatically updated to Sneeze.
The problem arises when you try to update your template using one of my upgrade guides.
Since Notion templates can’t be automatically updated like other web apps, the only want to “upgrade” to new versions of my templates is to manually perform the same updates I make.
To make this easier, I provide detailed, step-by-step upgrade guides to help you.
Often, these upgrade guides will contain new formulas for you to paste into your Formula properties.
Here’s the issue: Any new formulas I provide will reference properties as they are originally named in the template. If you have changed the name of a property, you’ll get a “Property not found” error.
Formulas can only update their property references at the moment you change a property’s name.
When you paste in a new formula, it’s just plain-text - it’s not smart enough to know that you changed a property name.