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OmniFocus is my master list of projects and tasks. I pull out my due tasks and several projects/next actions that I want to focus on for this week.


I've personally learned to streamline my projects into as few steps as possible. Sometimes, I'll plan just the next two to four steps and no further. If I do try to plan out the steps, I'll look at a project during the weekly review and see if the next actions needs tweaking/refining. I'll modify a project's next action list based on the progress and whatever unforeseen circumstances occur.

I've learned to ween myself off of OmniFocus. In the beginning, it was my crutch and I did everything and anything with it. Over the years, I've learned to keep stuff in OmniFocus but only reference it when I need it.

I would do my weekly review and look at my due/due soon perspective.I write on the whiteboard all due/due soon projects and their next actions on my white board. I know that these are time-sensitive tasks/projects that I'll need to focus on. I don't put due dates on anything unless it really has a hard deadline.

Then I'll select one or two other big rock projects and the next action. These are the important/non-urgent projects that I would like to make major progress on this week.

Afterwards, I'll hide OmniFocus and focus on the projects/tasks that are on my whiteboard:

Due/Due Soon
Big Rock Projects (Important/Non-Urgent)

The only reason I will go back to OmniFocus is to enter in new tasks/projects when inspiration hits me or when something comes into my inbox that I must record. Sometimes I won't even use OmniFocus. I might get distracted and start looking at other next actions to do instead of focusing on what is already on my whiteboard. I often just get out my trusty notepad and write down project ideas/tasks as they come in to my inbox. At the end of the day, I'll process those into OmniFocus.

If I feel I have sufficiently completed as much as I can today on all the whiteboard items, I might just pop back into OmniFocus and look at my "Next Actions available" perspective to se if there are any random tasks that I can accomplish. I will only look at this perspective when I have attained enough progress on my whiteboard items. By hiding OmniFocus, I never get tempted to look at trying to look for another more pleasing/easy next action to accomplish. Or I might get distracted and start tweaking projects/next actions once again. This usually ends with me just burning an hour away and pretending that I actually got something because I was "planning."

I know that OmniFocus will always be there for me when I need it. But I try not to keep the OmniFocus program visible on my computer or on my iPod touch.

Previously, I would feel glorified in keeping OmniFocus open and seeing all those distracting next actions that make me sick. I would feel sick because I'd see a long scrolling list of next actions. But now that my whiteboard holds just the projects/next actions that I want to work on, I feel more "focused." Or should I say I feel more "OmniFocused"? ;-D

Last edited by wilsonng; 2012-11-08 at 08:17 PM..