To-do lists are a useful tool for prioritizing your workload, for making sure you don’t forget anything and for visualizing all the things you have to do. Once you’ve created your to-do list, you can then work through it one item at a time and that way get a real sense of progress as you tick each item off.
But these days a to-do list can be much more than simply a list of tools on a piece of paper. Thanks to the power of computers and the web, you can now get much more from your lists by using the right software. Read on for some examples.
Todoist is a web app that’s also available for mobile devices. What’s great about this right from the start is that anything you add or complete on it will be updated across all your devices. That means you can type things you need to do on your computer while you’re working in the office and then check what you have to do by glancing at your phone. If you have an Android then you can even get a widget for the homescreen to tell you what you need to do.
You can make lists for different days ahead of time without having to keep sheets of paper everywhere, and also useful is the ability to create projects or categories for your lists. This way you can have a separate to-do list for different aspects of your work, or for different things you’re doing at home.
IFTTT stands for ‘If This, Then That’ and is a web app that allows you to connect different online services and devices like Facebook, Twitter, DropBox, Evernote, your smartphone and – of course – Todoist. What this then means is that you can use Todoist to control those services, or you can let those services post new items on you lists.
For instance, if you get an e-mail from a particular person, you could have that automatically added to your to-do list: saying ‘respond to X’.
Likewise, if you like to use rewards to encourage yourself to work, then you can combine Todoist with WEMO (a device that plugs into wall sockets to turn any device on or off) in order to have the kettle start boiling just as soon as you complete a task on your list.
You could also use Evernote or Google Drive spreadsheets to log everything you’ve done on your to-do list so you have a record.
Setting everything up takes a little time, but once you have it all working this can do wonders for your productivity – give it a go!