Today I’m thankful for productivity…
I’m a list-making-fanatic. I love lists. I have lists for everything…work, house cleaning, yard work, travel planning, and on-and-on-and-on. I think lists make me more organized and give me the ability to get more done. Lists also make me worry less. If I don’t write something down, I constantly think I’ll forget that I want to do it. But there is a downfall to my obsession with lists…they can become over-whelming and can get lost.
A couple of years ago I stumbled across the website Toodledo while searching for to-do apps for my iPad. I tried it out and then a few months later started ignoring it. This spring I was yet again searching for a to-do app. Luckily for me I stumbled upon my neglected Toodledo account. I can’t say whether they improved the app or I just dedicated a bit more upfront time, but I’m using it again and it has become the savior of my to-do lists. Instead of using the app on my iPad, I most frequently use the website from either my work or home computer. Note: the app is available for iPad/iPhone, but not Android (however other Android to-do apps integrate with Toodledo).
I’m not going to lie…it took a fair amount of time, over several weeks, to get it working “perfectly” for me. I hope that won’t scare anyone away from Toodledo. It can be setup quickly for a basic to-do list. I on the other hand decided to pay for the service (yep…the basic service is free and does a lot) so I wanted to spend the extra time to make sure I go the most for my money.
Besides to-do lists (called tasks), Toodledo does a lot more…outlines, notes, goal setting (even linking back to tasks). And, if you want to share a task list (maybe with a spouse) they have collaboration as well.
Tasks are the core of Toodledo. If you already have tasks in another format, they can be imported.
Folders can bet setup to group tasks. For example I have the following folders:
- Blogging and Writing
- Home, Garage, and Yard
- Travel and Adventure
These folders allow me to see everything in specific groupings. I like to do this if I’m deciding what the most important tasks are within a group.
Tasks can also be setup as Parents (the default) or Sub-Tasks. I have Website Maintenance as a parent task and under that I have several sub-tasks that pertain to website maintenance. It’s another great way to sort and group tasks.
On each view within tasks there is the ability to sort based on many criteria (due date, priority, alphabetical, etc). On my main view I sort all my tasks by due date and priority (top, high, medium, low, and negative).
Task can be either “one time” or “recurring”. I love to use recurring for those tasks that I need to do every day (like writing 1000 words a day) and weekly (like posting to my blog). Bi-weekly, monthly, quarterly, Semi-Annually, and Annually are also available.
I use notes to track random things like “books I want to read”, “websites I want to visit”, “topics I want to research”, etc. Notes are basically a way for me to track things I want to do, but that are not really tasks (yet).
I’m tore on the usefulness of outlines for me. I’ve only used them as a place to jot organized ideas about a couple of books I’m thinking of writing. I could easily use notes (above) instead.
Goals are a great feature. I’m in the process of using them in a more organized way. There is the ability to set lifelong, long-term, and short-term goals. Goals can roll up into one another. For instance, a lifelong goal could be to “Lose Weight & Keep It Off”, a long-term goal could be “Keep Weight Off For One Year”, and a short-term goal could be “Make Goal Weight”. Every goal level can have tasks that go along with them. For instance, a daily task that could go along with these goals is “Walk the Dogs”.
I haven’t used collaboration, but if I was married I would seriously consider it. My understanding is one person can submit tasks to the other person.
Have you used a To-Do app or website? If so, which one? What did you think about it?