Learn how to use the subtract (-) operator in Notion formulas.
The subtract (-) operator allows you to subtract two numbers and return their difference.
number - number
subtract(number, number)
When used in mathematical equations, the - operator follows the standard mathematical order of operations (PEMDAS). For more detail, see Operator Precedence.
You can also use the function version, subtract().

Example Formulas

12 - 5 // Output: 7
subtract(5,12) // Output: -7

Working with 3 or More Operands

Since subtract is a binary operator, it can only work on two operands - the objects which are being operated on (if - the ternary operator - is the only operator that works on three operands).
If you need to work with more than two operands, the shorthand - is by far the easiest way to do it.
40 - 10 - 5 // Output: 25
subtract(subtract(40,10),5) // Output: 25

Example Database

The example database below tracks a weekend of treasure-spending by three pirates. Each starts with a Start Budget of $3,000, and the Leftover formula shows how much each has left after the weekend.

View and Duplicate Database

Note how I’ve set the number format of each column to U.S. Dollar. I’ve also set each column’s Calculate value to Sum, allowing me to see the total of all rows put together.

"Leftover" Property Formula

prop("Start Budget") - prop("Saturday") - prop("Sunday")
Instead of using hard-coded numbers, I’ve called in each property using the prop() function.

About the Author

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