Productivity. It’s a subject that many profess to be experts at and a word that tends to get thrown around willy-nilly. It’s also a huge topic but let’s talk about to do lists for now. I’ve always been a list man; whether it’s jotted in the margins of a notebook, in a moleskine, or using an app on my phone/computer/tablet, I’ve always been a fan of using them to track progress and keeping on track. While I’ve always been a fan of lists I’m not an expert with them by any measure. I’ve read Getting Things Done by David Allen but I’ve never reached that level of systematic.
As I mentioned above, I’ve taken to using applications for managing my to do lists and projects over the last several years. For my professional task management I’ve used everything from Outlook’s task list, to simple checklists in Apple Notes, to what I currently use: Todoist. The main reason for using Todoist for my current work applications is that I need to collaborate with my team and it’s the best cross platform solution I’ve come across.
I do, however, like to keep my professional and personal applications separate so for my personal to do lists I had been using Omnifocus on my Mac, my iPhone, and my iPad (yes, for the new people, I am firmly entrenched in the Apple ecosystem). I’d been feeling more and more like it wasn’t working for me though as I strayed further from a GTD system. Over the last few months I’ve been toying with going back to Cultured Code’s Things. I had tried Things when it was a version 1 product and I grew out of the experience, mostly due to the UI. I’ve recently made the leap back to Things 3 as you could have guessed from the title of this post and I’ve been pretty happy with it so far, the downside is the price point. While I am a fan of supporting software developers who make great products, dropping over $100 for applications on computer, phone and tablet is a little steep but perhaps that’s just me being cheap. Either way I did do it and I don’t regret it but if you’re a budget conscious person it might be worthwhile to stick with something like Todoist.
For those who are interested, I do break my separation rule by using Todoist for my grocery list. It integrates really well with Amazon’s Echo which I use extensively and I’ve grown accustomed to saying “Amazon, add eggs to my shopping list” as I’m rummaging around in my refrigerator or pantry. I know, I know… zeroeth world problems but it is way easier than stopping what I’m doing and grabbing my phone to add eggs to my list.
I guess this is a good place to say that I have not been sponsored in any way by these products or services and that the opinions expressed above are my own.
TL;DR: If you’re looking for a solid to do list for a manageable price, hit up Todoist. If you have extra cash and you’d like a more polished experience aim for Things 3. Finally, if you’re looking for a serious GTD tool for your system, go for Omnifocus.