The Next Week in TaskPaper

Recorded on April 23rd, 2016

I don’t feel like writing this post right now. All my lizard brain wants to do is read about Prince and watch more Prince videos, but that’s not going to make me less sad, and it’s not going to get anything productive done.

In the hope of pulling my TaskPaper file back from the cliff and breathing life into it again, I’ve decided to meet myself where I am and just admit that I think of tasks in terms of days and weeks. Other than the handy ability of Siri to set reminder dates for stuff, I’ve never liked setting “start dates” and especially “due dates” for tasks in the future. It didn’t work for me when I used OmniFocus, and it doesn’t work for me when I use TaskPaper. Setting those kinds of date ticklers always makes an obnoxious iOS reminder pop up at a time when I’m invariably not going to want to move on a task, and then you end up with a spiky list of arbitrary due times, but no real picture of what a day looks like.

Here’s what I’m trying starting this week:

screenshot of TaskPaper file

I have a passel of actual TaskPaper projects stashed off the bottom of the screen, but what you can see here is that I’m misusing a handful of TaskPaper “projects” and naming them after the upcoming days of the week. That means I’ll pluck out a few next actions from various projects (or just some standalone, project-less next actions) and dump them in the days of the week when I think I’ll get to them. That way, I can see how a day is shaping up. To me, that’s actually less insane than assigning dates to stuff that I know I need to get to in the next two to seven days. 💜

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