Sticking With What I Know: A Return to OmniFocus

Winter break is over, and I, along with many other teachers, are back to work. Fortunately, over winter break I graduated with my master's degree and am not returning to work while also returning to graduate courses. With a huge chunk of my time freed up, I want to be especially intentional not to lose some of that free/leisure time while still catching up on things grad school had caused me to neglect over the last couple years. This led me to look at my GTD system and practices in order to reorganize and prioritize new things.

The first step began in December by trying out 2Do instead of OmniFocus which has been my primary task manager for almost two years. I selected 2Do after reading Federico Viticci's review and being intrigued by many of the features. I thought the excitement of trying something new along with some of 2Do's differentiating features would help me jumpstart my productivity. The problem was, my lack of familiarity with 2Do led me to accidentally miss a couple important, time sensitive tasks over winter break. In OmniFocus, setting a due time means you automatically receive an alert at that time. This is not true in 2Do, and I was not reminded when I needed to be. While this was an error of assumptions and could be rectified in future usage, it did make me question the wisdom of using a new app at a critical time.

This culminated yesterday on the way to school when I decided to stop working against myself testing a new app while also reevaluating my schedule and practices. I need to take a tool I know really well and continue to tweak my usage of it instead of starting from the ground up. After this decision, I spent time adding in new tasks to OmniFocus and reorganizing old ones in the hopes that I can make better use of some of my newly freed up time. The ease and speed I was able to do this quickly confirmed my decision.

OmniFocus isn't perfect. No app is. It's possible 2Do (or some other task manager) could be a better fit for me down the road. Or not. But this was a good reminder that while new can be fun, it isn't always better in every situation.