Hi there, I’m new to this forum, but have been an MPU listener for a while. I’d be curious to hear from the community about how people stay on top of having a core task and project list in a dedicated tool while also using shared tools. I find myself split across a few different tools, and like to have a high level view in one place. Have people developed ways to do this without simply manually replicating tasks and projects? At work I use the Google Environment (Tasks and a bunch of spreadsheets and rooms), I also use Google and MS Tasks in some volunteer and project work. I move between Omnifocus and reminders at home.
I struggle with this, as my firm’s case management system (Filevine) is top notch, but its task management features won’t ever be as extensive as a dedicated task manager. Filevine does have great Zapier support, so I have a few Zapier rules set up which get triggered anytime my secretary or paralegal assign me a task in Filevine. That puts a task in my Todoist inbox (which I recently switched to from Things). From there, I can slice and dice it how I want in Todoist, and the task includes a link back to the task in Filevine. When I complete the task, I click the link in Todoist, which loads it in Filevine, where I can mark it done.
The one hole in my system is that I don’t do things in reverse — i.e., I don’t have a way to create a task in Todoist, and go back and create the identical task in Filevine so my staff knows what I’m doing. With Todoist having a web app, that might be possible, although I suspect not, because I probably can’t map it to a specific Filevine project.
I have all task related info in Omnifocus, and reference items in corporate systems there (I use tagging in corp email f.e. These tags then reference a perspective in OF)
The linch pin between all systems is not digital however, it’s my traveler’s notebook.
I transfer tasks in and out through my notebook, and have found that allows for a moment of reflection (review?) which limits the intake to the essential, not to be confused with the minimum, and gives me time to have some ideas as well.
Most systems nowadays have either tagging or color coding, and my OF reflects these to make it work for me.
My dividing line is “the tools I use at work are the tools I use at work”. In other words, if I am not going to do anything on my team’s action planning list when I am not on the job, then I don’t bother mixing the tasks with my personal lists. When I’m on the job, then I’ll take care of managing the tasks.
It helps a lot – as much as possible – to put an iron curtain in place between work-work and my life. Contemporary culture tries to make us regret doing that, unfortunately.
Like others, I have settled on a “split” system between apps for home and apps that are specifically for work. I tried to make everything okay together nicely with OmniFocus online but it ended up causing more stress than it was worth.
I settled on using Kanban-style tools like Trello for work projects, something that I could add items to anywhere while on the go, but kept it separate from the rest of my personal productivity strategy.
Much like the “multi-iPad” strategy some of us employed (or still do!) a couple years ago, there’s something to be said for having separate systems for the different parts of your life.
Thanks everybody, Thanks for the feedback. Seems that there is no silver bullet (other than Zapier). One of my probs is that my tasks and projects are scattered across multiple areas - not just work and home. I guess that this is what GTD is for! I’m going to try to settle in a little more on regularly reviewing projects both in some shared systems and in Omnifocus to see how that works.
How are you finding the lack of start dates?
Lack of start dates hasn’t been an issue for me. Todoist really seems to treat due dates the way other systems treat start dates. I rarely used Things to track my due dates in the past. I either did (and do) them in my firm’s systems, or I use Reminders for personal stuff. So it hasn’t affected me, although I’d put it in the “nice to have” category for me. But if someone is a heavy user of both due dates and start dates, Todoist probably isn’t the right tool.
The bigger issue for me right now is Todoist doesn’t feel very Mac-like, so I’m not 100% sure I’ll be able to stick with it for the long haul. I frequently feel like I’m fighting with it, and fighting muscle memory.