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In the last few months, I’ve seen the number of tasks I have skyrocket. My full-time job is busier, I’m spending more time on the blog and I have less time for everything else. I was getting desperate for a way to keep everything straight and then I found Todoist. Alex swears I’m the only person who actually puts “relax” as an item on my to-list. What can I say? I’m a list maker! I guess there’s a certain comfort that comes from having a list. It’s like bringing some kind of order to the chaos. If you can just cross some items off your list you must be doing something right, right?
Todoist is a productivity app that provides a way for you to manage your tasks.
You can access Todoist anywhere – with a smartphone, tablet or PC. It works with either Android or iOS too. As a long-time Android user, this gives me the heart eyes. ? I like that I can set up different projects and associate my tasks to the right one. Color-coding makes it simple to see what belongs where. I have projects set up for personal, work, blog and household. The household project is where I track my cleaning schedule. It’s so easy to set up recurring tasks too. Trello is the app I use to manage my blog editorial calendar and I use Zapier to connect Trello and Todoist.
It does take some time upfront to get everything set up.
But it’s easy to add new tasks to each project after that’s done. I get a reminder every morning of what I have for the day. It’s the first thing I check when I wake up. And I’ve set triggers up in Zapier to create new Todoist tasks when new items are added in Trello. So a task is automatically created with the correct due date and I don’t have to lift a finger. Awesome! I’m currently using the free version which is working fine for right now. The premium version is $28.99 a year and unlocks more features like the calendar feed and labels. I would have no problem spending the money for this so I’ll probably upgrade in the next few months.
When you first sign up with Todoist, you can choose a color scheme for your workspace. Don’t worry, if you don’t like it you can always change it later in the Settings. I went with Tangerine because it seemed happy.
Now you’re in the main workspace area. Your projects are listed to the left and tasks are displayed in the middle of the screen. At the top left, you can view your upcoming tasks for the current day or everything for the next 7 days.
Some common projects have already been added for you but you can also edit and rename them if you don’t want ’em. To edit a project, click the 3 dots to the right of the project name and choose “edit project” from the menu. You can change the color by clicking the colored dot. To rename it just start typing. To save it hit enter.
I changed the name of the Shopping project to Blog and made the color green instead of grey.
OK, now let’s add some tasks! Click the project name on the left that you want to add tasks to. Click the Add Task button and give it a name. The scheduling feature in Todoist is amazing. Besides just being able to pick a specific date, I can set the recurrence to “Friday” or “every day” or “every 2 weeks” or “every 3rd Friday”.
When I set up my cleaning tasks I can just put “1st Saturday of every month” or “every Tuesday” or “every 3rd month”. No need to know the specific date. Just keep in mind that it starts from the current day. So if I say “every 3rd month” on a Friday it will schedule it for the 3rd Friday from now.
Todoist has you covered if you’re the kind of person who likes to be rewarded for good behavior. As you add, schedule and complete tasks you’re building karma points. Let something slip past the deadline? Your karma points go down. Whomp-whomp. It’s a nice visual tool to give you an idea of where you’re at. I notice that I’m more productive on Sundays and Tuesdays. Well, that’s….weird. And if you either complete or reschedule everything on your list you reach hallowed “Todoist Zero” ground.
The number of tasks you add and complete determines the number of karma points you get. If you’re an overachiever you can even score bonus points by setting up goals to accomplish. As you can see, I’m at the intermediate karma level. Do I get reincarnated as a raccoon maybe? Not the top of the food chain but not at the bottom by any means. And pretty darn cute too.
I don’t think I’d be able to get half of what I accomplish in a day done if it wasn’t for Todoist. And it’s so easy to add and complete tasks. I can mark them complete in the app on my phone no matter where I am. I am also loving Trello for my editorial calendar. And using Zapier between the two apps has worked out really well. I like not having to manually create a separate task when I add a new card in Trello. I have a post planned in the near future to share more about how I set up and use Trello.
It’s November kids! I can’t believe how fast this year has flown by. Pretty soon I’ll be unpacking the Christmas decorations and getting the house ready for the holidays. I have a lot of good stuff planned for the blog too so sign up for our mailing list to get notified. You can click here to sign up or there’s a form in the sidebar.
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