Task Management in Notion

A huge discussion now is whether task managers are being challenged by Notion.

With the addition of list manager to the service and the more advanced users getting into the weeds of task management, I think we aren’t far from people actually considering it as a list manager too. But all speculation.

In Rebecca Ford’s latest video on YouTube, she discusses this topic and explains how she does it on her Notion account. Which I think is a super interesting topic.

Here’s the latest on Notion what’s new: https://www.notion.so/What-s-New-157765353f2c4705bd45474e5ba8b46c (reference)

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

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I’m a proponent of the mindset of “do whatever works for you.”

For some people, building a system like this in a database tool like Notion may work for them. It seems like there’s a lot of fiddly work maybe to get it the way you want it, but it is nice that it seems customizable.

For others, it may introduce a lot of friction. I personally don’t like having to create a bunch of extra structure to make something work (which is why the Bullet Journal didn’t take off for me as a task tool).

Where this approach to Notion might find traction is an in-between stage of task manager. Right now, there isn’t much in between list making tools like Reminders and project management/GTD tools like OmniFocus, Things, or Todoist. For people who don’t need or want the features that make these apps unique (recurring tasks, notifications, project structures & statuses, defer/start dates, etc.), Notion may be a home run, but that all depends on the friction created by the tool and the person’s tolerance of that.

I do think this is an interesting idea, and am interested to see where people take it. At this point, I need the features OmniFocus offers without having to build them for myself.

Thanks for sharing @francesco!

That’s what people say about OmniFocus! Too many knobs and dials to use. Some people need the complexity and others don’t.

Thanks for the link. I hope it doesn’t become a jack-of-all-trade and master-of-none. But it certainly looks like an interesting new route to take.

True – OmniFocus is a bit more focused of a tool than Notion is, which is why I find it easier :smiley:

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I enjoy fiddling with a system to get it to where I want it, it’s why I’ve tried just about all task management applications out there but keep coming back to OmniFocus because I don’t think anyone beats them in paring down the information to what I need to see right now. Notion is one of those applications I can see myself enjoy tweaking to no end. That said, from that video I would go crazy with distractions if I had all of the project information in the same place I have my tasks. Currently, I only have the projects, sub-projects, and tasks in OF. I keep no supporting notes in OF, and instead, I have a DEVONthink link or Notebooks link in the OF notes to the referencing notes.


Wow, I’m impressed with her use of this tool. I’m not about to make a switch from my current system (too much invested in data and habit), but I applaud her maximizing the use of Notion. Thanks for sharing the video, @francesco.

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There’s been a recent discussion of Notion on Outlinersoftware.com, at https://www.outlinersoftware.com/topics/viewt/8345/10. The views of one or two critics who’d tried it were best summed up by one of them: “Notion.so is the product I wanted to like but [I] eventually decided not to use it. I found I spent too much time [to] “organize” or “structure” the notes instead of focusing on [the] note itself.”

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I have to announce that I’ve rethought my position here.

I’m 100% on board with Notion. I’ll have to do a write-up or a video sometime soon on it.

I will say I’m not using it as a task manager, but more a big-picture planner and project manager.

Side note: I firmly believe task and project management are two different things and need to be handled differently. See 012: Project Management vs. Task Management.

Notion definitely fits the bill for a great project manager. It doesn’t do due dates very well or anything like that, but I don’t need that. Reminders can ping me if something is due on a date. But has been giving me the top-down view I’ve been seeking for ages!

I tried notion for about an hour, but it seemed like a solution searching for a problem I did not have, so removed it. I do wonder about all these web services people jump into without thought as to where their data goes or how the hell the access it when the web goes down.

I remember David Sparks saying that when the internet went down in his office and everyone panicked he just switched to a perspective in Omnifocus which non web tasks and carried on. How does that work in Notion?

I try to be really careful here. Notion is very much in the experimental phase for me still (though it has been a 4 month experiment) for this very reason.

I primarily use Notion for a weekly plan and keeping track of project ideas and notes. Rarely do I ever work out of Notion, but I use it as a reference point to keep me on track. All of my day to day stuff goes in my bullet journal, so I can easily survive if the internet is out for an hour or even a day. Well, that is, as much as I can work without internet for a remote company :smiley: