# abs

Learn how to use the abs function in Notion formulas.

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abs(number)

A number’s absolute value is simply

**how far it is away from zero.**Therefore, the absolute value of a negative number is equal to its positive equivalent - e.g.`abs(-5) == 5.`

In mathematical notation, absolute values are expressed by wrapping a number in || signs:

$|-12\;| = 12$

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abs(-42) // Output: 42

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abs(42) // Output: 42

Notion’s dateBetween function subtracts the second argument from the first, and returns a number depending on the specified unit of time (e.g. “hours” or “seconds”).

If the second argument is a later date than the first argument’s date,

`dateBetween()`

will return a negative number. The formula in the table below uses the `abs()`

function to ensure that the output is **always**positive.1

abs(dateBetween(prop("Date 1"), prop("Date 2"), "seconds"))

My name is Thomas Frank, and I'm a Notion-certified writer, YouTuber, and template creator. I've been using Notion since 2018 to organize my personal life and to run my business and YouTube channel. In addition to this formula reference, I've created a free Notion course for beginners and several productivity-focused Notion templates. If you'd like to connect, follow me on Twitter.

Last modified 4mo ago