October 3, 2011

Augmenting GTD apps with a spreadsheet for repeating tasks

I’ve used several GTD apps and one weakness many have is the lack of repeating todos. I recently used Things again for a while due to the ability it has to manage todos. I grew to not like the mystery as to how many repeating todos would appear on any given day. I recently set up a Numbers spreadsheet as a chart for repeating todos. I put 1-31 along the top for the days of the month. I listed repeating todos along the left column sorted by my life roles (or areas of responsibility). I put a one in a box to designate the need to do a repeating todo on a given day. Each column was summed which allowed me to balance repeating todos across all days. This setup allowed me to achieve the daily-load balance that was not easily achieved in Things. Such a spreadsheet could be tracked on paper or on a handheld device. It was stress-neutral. I felt initially less stress when I felt my repeat todo load was balanced across days. My stress level rose, though, when I realized I have, on average, 13-15 repeating todos every day. Now to cull the number of repeats and simplify things. Addendum: I’ve since moved onto a trial of a new strategy using Taskpaper and repeats added to the document at weekly intervals.

  • productivity

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