Todoist is a task manager with two cool tricks

We’ve covered some nice productivity software over the years, like TeuxDeux and Due. Today, I want to point out Todoist, not only because it’s nearly ubiquitous, attractive, and effective, but because it has two features I think are really great. The following reasons are why Todoist is the digital project manager that has my attention these days.

It’s everywhere

Okay, so this isn’t one of the cool tricks but it’s something very much worth mentioning. Todoist boasts that it’s available on 13 platforms and devices. I’ve been using it on my Mac and iPhone, but you’ll also find options for Android and Windows, plus extensions for Chrome, Firefox, Outlook, Gmail and more. In my experience, synchronization between my computer and phone is lightning fast.

Import and export

Todoist lets you make color-coded projects and tasks, complete with tags, due dates, repeating events and so much more. It’s great-looking and effective. What’s really cool is its ability to import and export templates.

Here’s how this time-saving feature works:
When you create a new project, it’ll probably have several steps that must be ticked off before the thing can be marked as done. You can be really thorough, like me, and add due dates, contexts, color coding and more. Sometimes there will be a project that you’ll do over and over. A good example is the podcast I run at 5by5. Each week I go through the exact same steps, from scheduling to research and publication. I could add those steps to a project week after week, or I could just use a template.

Once a project is set up exactly how you like it, select “Export template” from within Todoist. It converts all those steps into a simple text file, with all my customization intact. I can store it wherever I want, and opting to import it sets up that project all over again, and all I had to do was click a single command.

There’s a great post on the Todoist blog that features several templates that are ready to import and use, including holiday gift shopping, pre-Christmas organizing, a holiday party plan, and even one for travel. I’m using the Christmas organization one now, and have saved the travel template for the future. This feature saves me so much time.

Karma points

I promised you two tricks, and the second one is something I should not like as much as I do. As you complete tasks, Todoist awards you with “karma points.” The more you use the app, the more points you receive. There are several ranks to earn and a pretty chart. Ignore the app or fail to complete tasks on time, and you’ll start to lose points. Yes, it’s 100 percent gimmicky and silly, but I totally get excited when I see my point total climb.

There are a huge number of project management apps available, and Todoist is only one of them. But I love its clean looks, near ubiquitous access and fantastic templates. You can use Todoist for free as long as you like, or upgrade to the premium version for $29 per year. I’ve found it to be definitely worth the expense.

7 Comments for “Todoist is a task manager with two cool tricks”

  1. posted by Todd Lohenry on

    I think the coolest feature is that I can set a todo to be done when I arrive somewhere — like the next time I’m at a a store…

  2. posted by Kalen Bruce @ MoneyMiniBlog on

    I really like Todoist. I’ve used it in the past, but I recently decided to simplify my to do list, so I use an app called Balanced. I think it was free and it’s really simple to use. I think as long as you track your goals and tasks, you’re doing it right! Todoist is definitely one of the top task manager apps.

  3. posted by J.P. on

    Todoist was recently recommended to me and, after using the web app, I was enthusiastic about it. Then I went to download the iOS app to my phone. It wouldn’t install. It turns out Todoist requires iOS 8, which doesn’t support my iPhone 4. A little research showed they did the same thing with iOS 7, leaving many (paid) users out in the cold.
    Maybe I’m being picky, but I really don’t like the idea of putting all my information into a product that could stop working for me because I don’t upgrade my phone often enough.

  4. posted by Jeannette on

    Was that a typo: $2 per month or $29 per year? (Should it have read “$20 per year”?)

  5. posted by Brian on

    been looking for a good one.. this seems to have it, going to try it out.
    plus, it works with IFFFT, so you can get creative working with other apps/sites/services.

  6. posted by Todd on

    I used to be a task management software junkie, spending more time managing my system than getting things done. I finally settled on WorkFlowy. It’s simple, plain text, and flexible. Have you looked at it? I really like it for brain dumps and focusing on a little bit at a time, but then being an to zoom out and see the big picture. Not for everyone, certainly, but might appeal to those who think less is more.

  7. posted by Colodia on

    Todoist is good choice but if you need just more than task management tool then you can try proofhub. Todoist lack some features like group chat, custom roles. Proofhub allow to add unlimited users in every plan. I really don’t think so it can boost up your productivity.

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