Eric Bowers tried OmniFocus 3 and loved it. But he yearned for the simplicity of Things 3. He found himself spending more time tinkering with OmniFocus instead of doing his work.
He did say that he was going through a life change when he took on a job as a mortgage consultant. He was very busy and really liked the power that OF gave him. But its power was its downfall according to Eric. Too many features gave him a chance to procrastinate and excuse himself for playing around with different perspectives and building the “perfect system.”
So he switched back to Things. He will miss many of OF’s features but he loved having keyboard shortcuts on Things for iPad.
Now, I don’t believe in the “perfect” system. I believe in having a system that adapts with you and morphs enough to give you the right tools at the right time. Life changes so quickly nowadays. We might change jobs or hop from one project to another as an independent consultant. We might decide to drop some roles or projects and lighten our load. Our task manager should be able to change with us. That’s why some of us might go from the OmniFocus powerhouse back down to the steady and capable package of Things.
I used to be a tinkerer. I would endlessly search for the best perspectives, shortcuts, workflows, and habits to adopt. I stopped tweaking my setup. I’ve decided to spend less time in my task manager and more time in the real world. My strategy is to use my task manager as my storage bin for all of my projects, tasks, commitments, and promises. Then I bring a handful of tasks to the surface by choosing 3 MITs (Most Important Tasks) and writing it in my notebook. I focus on just those 3 tasks and get to work. I don’t linger in my task manager. I don’t open my task manager unless I need to. It’s hidden from my screen by collapsing the window into the Dock. I’m more resistant to tinkering with my task manager when it is hidden from view. I’ve noticed myself being consistently distracted if my task manager app is visible on the screen. I banished it to the Dock and work from my notebook.
I’m glad Eric is able to shift gears and change task managers when needed. There is a bit of friction transitioning a database from one task manager to another and can lead to some unwanted downtime. I would switch task managers only if a major change in my life. But there are a few exceptions of course.
My question to the Guild members is:
What made you want to switch to your current task manager? What would happen if you minimized your task manager from view? Would you get more work done?