omnifocus 2 love

coloregrace omnifocus loves I take pride in the way I organize. Last week I shared how I organized 2014, but today I’d love to show you a few ways I’m keeping organized in 2015. Gosh, the first month is practically over already! I have a few tricks and tips for staying on top of things, but instead of showing photos of my iPad and Confidant laid out on my desktop with a side of coffee, I want to dig deeper into the apps I constantly use. I’m not quite a productivity app junkie, (although I get crazy excited to discuss them with B), but I am a genuine fan of a few. The app I could not function without is Omnifocus 2. I cannot stress enough how learning and using this app has been a productivity game-changer in my life. I wrote a short review of Omnifocus last June, but since I’ve been able to expand how I use the app. This is perfect for people who have multiple things going on in life.

coloregrace loves omnifocus 2

To start the process, I break my life into categories of my main responsibilities. Next, on a big white blank sheet of paper I write the folder on the top of the page, then go crazy writing down everything I can think of that I need or want to do within that responsibility. And I mean everything. For example, I’ll write ‘BLOG’ at the top of the page then write all of the ideas I have for content, which may include each action I’ll need to complete the project like taking photos or writing the first draft, plus anything extra I want to do for my blog like updating my headshot.

After flushing out every task you can think of for every category, I type each action into the Inbox. I revisit the list one at time and slowly define what is a project with multiple actions, or single actions task lists. This is the biggest time investment of organizing Omnifocus because you have to clearly define each item and place it accordingly. Then I view the ‘projects’ and decided when each project needs to be due. Every action can be assigned a start date and/or a due date. By thinking through each project individually and coordinating with my calendar, I’m able spread out my work load. This means I can complete the tasks over a few days, instead of piling all of the work onto one day which can be very stressful. Working this way allows me to do a lot of work in advance so I’m prepared.

coloregrace loves omnifocus 2

Once I’ve done this for each category, view the Forecast. This view is my favorite because it is where I find my daily to-do list. Making to-do lists is a horrible habit of mine. I spend time trying to rewrite to-do lists multiple times, so instead of working I’m busy thinking about working. Not productive! With forecast I always have an up-to-date version of my list where I can check things off easily or push them to a more suitable date. I love being able to complete multiple tasks from a variety of projects in one day. Little wins, like checking off tasks, make me incredibly happy!

coloregrace loves omnifocus 2

I typically like to review my Forecast in the morning so I’m prepared for the tasks I need to get done, or figure out which are most important for the day. As I work, I check-in throughout the day to make sure I’m completing tasks, or add new things in too. Each night before I go to sleep I make sure every item is checked off my list from the day, or I reschedule for tomorrow.

I’ve been using Omnifocus for almost a year and I am still learning new ways that Omnifocus works for me. It takes time to understand and build the way you utilize this tool, but the way it impacts my productivity is immeasurable. I highly recommend trying Omnifocus here if you’re like me and juggle multiple projects throughout the day. I’ll admit that I have the app for all of my devices, and it’s worth it because they all sync seamlessly. If you’d like to nerd out with me, here are some more articles about how other people use Omnifocus in their lives that gave me a deeper understanding of how it works.

Omnifocus love

i-love-omnifocusOn one of my first few dates with Bruce, he started talking to me about his passion for Omnifocus. I already knew Bruce was incredibly organized and nerded out about pens, paper, taking notes, and being productive. But this took my love for this nerd to a new level. On multiple occasions we have talked about productivity apps for over an hour. I had heard of Omnifocus before but never thought I had enough going on to organize this way, and boy was I wrong. These past few months have had my brain feeling a lot like this image by A Pair of Pears, "too many tabs open". He set me up with Omnifocus a few weeks ago, and I am a natural. I love Omnifocus because it allows you to completely dump all of your tasks you have floating around your brain in to one place, your 'inbox', and then organize the tasks by what you need to do first and what can be put off for another day. It also allow you to build different projects, which I am using to separate individual task, blog projects I work on, calligraphy projects, and the to-do list Bruce and I have for our move. It has been really helpful to stay on top of everything at the same time.

iphoneomni I typically open Omnifocus in the morning to review everything I need to do that day. The Forecast mode shows how many tasks you have per day, and shows events that are scheduled in your calendar at the bottom. You can organize what time you need to get something done, and it will send you alerts. Task can be as small as calling mom or as large as rebranding your blog.  Throughout the day it is gratifying to check things off your list. During the day you can add new things for the next day or week. After my work day, I will open it again to add or check things off. Then before I go to bed I make sure evert thing thats on my mind is schedule into Omnifocus, which has been allowing my brain to relax enough to sleep.

Every day I'm doing my best to be productive, follow my dreams, and be happy with the work I'm doing.

Learn all about Omnifocus and purchase it here!


Friday Four

FridayFourApps1Happy Friday everyone! I'm so happy for the weekend. This week has a been a chaotic mess of highs and lows; I'm ready to relax a bit. Since it's Friday, I'm here to share my Friday Four Favorites on 4/4/2014! WHOA! This week I thought I'd do something different and share my new favorite Apps! As you mayknow from reading past post (like this one or this one), I am a complete Apple fan girl. Always an iPhone girl, always will be! I love learning about new apps and downloading them to test them out. However, I get pretty set in my ways on which apps I use on a daily basis, so new apps rarely stick around. I am happy to say these four new apps are forever favorites already!

  1. Day One - $4.99 This app is a beautiful on-the-go, or little blerb, journal. I remember trying Day One a few years ago but it just didn't stick because the app needed some work. Now, it's improved to work smoothly! As I'm prepping for graduation, life is constantly changing and moving. It's nice to remind myself daily of the high points or what I'm grateful for. I write down who I saw that day, maybe a funny photo or two, or how I'm feeling. You can tag posts with different subjects to search one topic you write about a lot. There is a monthly view and a timeline to scroll through.  If you love journaling or keeping track of little details like I do, you'll enjoy Day One.
  2. Drafts - $4.99 By touching the Drafts icon once, the app opens to a blank page ready to type. Before I used the Apple Notes for a lot for things I needed to write down, but Drafts is more effiencient to use quickly and it's easier to export a note when you need. I'm still exploring Drafts and figuring out how I can maximize the use of this app. I know it's going to be a keeper for me as a busy blogger.
  3. Tweetbot 3 - $4.99 I know I know.. you're thinking "Colore! Tweetbot has been around for years!" & you're right! For some reason, I had been dead-set on only using the Twitter app all of these years. Before when I tried Tweetbot I couldn't get into the way the interface worked. Plus, I've been so busy lately I've rarely been checking twitter, which is unlike me! Thankfully, Tweetbot 3's beautiful new interface has me hooked on Twitter again! The app makes it easier to keep track of where you are in your news feed and is easier to read.I love it!
  4. Threes - $1.99 I'm not a big iPhone gamer, or any kind of gamer to be honest, but I am obsessed with this game! Typically I'll get some of the popular iPhone games, like TinyWings, and play them nonstop for two weeks. The games get to be mindless and no fun so I stop playing. However, Threes allows you to think about your next moves and build up a strategy of how you play. I must warn you though, it is crazy addictive. Such a fun game!