The first time I tried Todoist, I was enamored by one feature: the daily emails. I love those, as they are a great way to make sure I see my list for the day, at the top of the day when I can really do something about it. I quickly brushed Todoist aside for 2Do, as I didn’t trust the sync system and the unencrypted nature of Todoist.
Truthfully, in many ways 2Do is the better app. But when I found out Todoist was now encrypting sync data properly, I felt it warranted a full look. I switched everything over and found an app with less power, but which is actually more powerful for me.
Task management isn’t about features, rather it is about finding something that works for you. Your memory is rarely good enough, and paper is hardly easy enough. Digital tools have always been the Mecca we look for to organize our lives and keep us focused and working.
To that end, there are only a few true task management apps which are “bad”, the rest is all personal preference. GTD nerds will get nothing better than OmniFocus. People who assign and track tasks of many people will look to Flow, or Asana. Kanban nerds will eat up Trello. The list goes on and on — the tools are robust and seemingly endless.
Which is why, despite many people wanting to know what I switched to from 2Do, I held off. Yes, I switched to Todoist, like so many others. But not because of a sync change, that’s just the change which made the app a viable option, I switched because the app fits me better than any other right now. What I need could change at any point.
Ok, so why Todoist?
I use my task manager more for inputting things to do then managing tasks — a lot of apps focus more on the latter. Every app allows you to check things off quickly, but input on iOS has always been a lot of trouble. And if that input is slow, then I am slowed down and annoyed. 2Do and OmniFocus both require a lot of tapping to enter a task. With 2Do I was able to simplify that a bit with defaults, but I never felt like I could just ‘do it from the keyboard’.
Todoist has great natural language processing on the entry form, allowing me to enter the task, set due dates, assign tags or lists all without leaving my keyboard. I truly love this and this feature alone basically sealed the deal for me.
I had replicated this with OmniFocus by using a Keyboard Maestro action to send myself an email every day, but never did it with 2do. I really love getting a morning email outlining what is on my list — it’s a great way to get my head in the right place to start working when I sit down at my desk.
This is such a great feature of the platform.
The entire app feels light weight, and I’ve been making more of a move towards simple systems that do what I need and nothing more. There’s a lot to be said about that, and I think Todoist does this extremely well.
Part of this is aided by the lack of notifications. You can assign a task to be due today, but never get a push notification it is due — that’s another thing you have to add. At first I hated this, but I’ve now come to find it freeing.
It’s A Good App
As I said at the beginning, it’s not the most powerful app, but it is a really good app. For how I work it is a better app for me. I use none of the sharing features or tagging features. I only use a handful of lists — I just need something to put reminders in, and keep a list of what needs to be done.
Todoist does that superbly well. It allows me to keep my fingers on the keyboard more, and to quickly triage through things when I am preparing for my day with swipes and logical actions.
With Todoist I spend less time trying to find the right menu to tap in, and instead just type in the task how I think about it in my head, and move on with my day. Turns out — I really needed that.
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