How do you organize your to-dos in My Tasks?

gtd
my-tasks

#1

I’ve always been a huge fan of to-do lists (from paper versions to the variety of apps out there) which is why I geek out about finding and refining my system of organizing My Tasks in Asana :blush:

We’ve started a fundamental training course on task management for customers, and it’s amazing to see the variety of ways people organize their own to-do lists. The main thing we always explain is that your to-do list (in My Tasks or elsewhere) is a personal system for you, so you should organize it in the way that works well for you. That being said, it can be helpful to learn how others prioritize their daily tasks to learn from experts. Which leads me to ask…

How do you manage your My Tasks list?

We’d love to get insight from productivity experts @paulminors @JCarl @jallensantos @carlo @enyonam @crema @richardl and also those just getting started.


How to Defer Dates
My Tasks Tab: Section Suggestions?
#2

Excited to chime in here but would love to hear from you all first! :slight_smile:


#3

Hi @Kaitie @Alexis

I am still looking for the perfect way (for me) to organise my tasks. Generally, I have the same routine every morning.

In the morning I check my tasks, I select up to 6 tasks that go in the “Today” section. I then work on my “Upcoming” section, and divide them into few categories:

  • This week
  • Next week
  • Waiting
  • Ongoing
  • To Be Prioritised

I want my Today list as clean as possible, so I can focus on a limited number of tasks. In the upcoming section, I keep all the tasks that are important for me and that I want under my eyes.
Everything else gets a deadline and is pushed in the Later part in asana

Once a week I go through all the projects and I make sure that they are not stuck (it takes me 20 minutes a week).

This personal approach guarantees that I am always on top of things while allowing me to focus on few critical tasks every day.

Really curious how others manage theirs!


Organization of My Tasks: board and/or two layer sorting?
#4

Why tell when I can just show? :smiley:

Disclaimer: I’m demo-ing this in my personal workspace, but this is the process I use in my organization’s workspace, so I collaborate on work here. People assign tasks to me, we work on projects together, etc.

Please feel free to ask follow up questions! In fact, I find how people organize their My Tasks to be super interesting, so I’m happy to discuss.








Planning work for the week
Marking my task for today/this week
Coffee talk: Something comes up and you have to reschedule a bunch of your work, what do you do?
Planning for the new year in Asana
#5

@Alexis Can you be more specific on your sorts in this view and also how you get Today, Upcoming and Later to have Sections in them like you do, Thanks
@Carlo Similar question on how you are dividing into categories within the Today, Upcoming and Later


#6

OK, I guess I was overthinking this. For some reason I was thinking Sections were only in Projects but now realize you can add Sections in My Tasks, learn something everyday.


#7

@JCarl Totally understandable! In fact, when I started using My Tasks, the sections didn’t appear and I was very confused. I learned that in order for the sections to appear you need to start categorizing tasks as Today / Upcoming / Later.

Glad you were able to learn something new from this thread! I expect that there will be many moments like this for all of us here in the forum. :slight_smile:


#8

The “My Tasks” views drives me a little batty. My entire company works in Asana and we are a highly collaborative environment and so there are often several new tasks created each hour. When these get delegated to me they come in as “New Tasks” in the ‘My Tasks’ view which then felt like I was having to process each task twice - one in Inbox and another time in ‘My Tasks’. I eventually abandoned using the “Incomplete” view and rather sort by due date. But, I don’t have a good use case for “My Tasks”.

In the past I have tried creating sections of @context (which is a GTD terminology) but here was too much coming in on a daily basis. It often felt like I was having the process each action twice from first the Inbox and then in My Tasks.

This is one view where I could use some tips!


#9

I like your setup @carlo. I have a very similar set of sections in upcoming:

  • This week
  • Next week
  • Next actions
  • Waiting

#10

Hi @paulminors

In the past few days, though, I have reverted to a much simpler approach. I now keep in “My Tasks” only up to a dozen of tasks.
If you don’t have a full task list, the organisation works; however, when you have roughly a hundred of tasks, the My Tasks becomes overcrowded and you spend too much time managing tasks.

I have then reverted back to give deadlines to each task I don’t plan to work on today. It is similar to the idea of an Inbox Zero. Whatever is not today, is later. If I want to see what expects me tomorrow, I can go in the calendar view.
I admit that this “need of minimalism” is very strong with me, and having the structured approach I was using until a few days ago was not giving me the feeling of achievement and clarity! :slight_smile:


Best Practice for "ToDo"s
#11

As you can see above, I use a different process. However, I have certainly heard that limiting “Today” tasks to a small handful keeps things organized and manageable. I like the 12 tasks approach @carlo . I’ve even heard the recommendation of limiting “Today” tasks to 5 must-do tasks.


#12

@Alexis my 12 tasks limits is between Today and Upcoming! Today: should do; Upcoming: could do


#13

Oh! Certainly manageable. I assume the rest is in Later? How do you plan for the following day and does it take you a lot of time to sort through your later - or does everything have a due date so it automatically populates? @carlo


#14

@Alexis Everything in Later has a due date.
Organising the following day is a breeze, as I go in the calendar view and I have a clear overview not only of what I have to do, but of the workload as well :slight_smile:


#15

@carlo agreed - limiting the MyTasks sections makes it way more managable and I like your approach.


#16

Hi everyone, thanks for starting this thread. I want to use My Tasks as a kind of GTD inbox. A dumping ground for random things that I think of throughout the day but that I don’t necessarily have time to organize into projects for in the moment. I’d like these to go under headings in ‘New Tasks’, but it seems like the only way a task gets into New Tasks is if it’s assigned from somewhere else. If I don’t currently have a ‘New Tasks’ section visible (everything is currently in Today or Upcoming, how do I get that section visible from the My Tasks view? Is that possible? Or do I have to assign a task without a due date from a specific project for it to show up?


#17

That’s right, @Brent_Ross. Tasks assigned to you are by default put into the New Tasks section of My Tasks. More info on how My Tasks is set up here. As you can see in the posts above, I like to add section headers to my Today section in order to organize my personal tasks. Since you want to use My Tasks as a dumping ground, you could create sections under Today to help you organize that dumping ground for GTD.

For example, if you want categories to reflect the five pillars of GTD, you could use New Tasks as the “capture” step and then under Today create sections for clarify, organize, reflect, engage. This is just one idea of many. I think you might enjoy asking for input from the group in this Community thread about GTD.


#18

Thanks @Alexis. I guess what I’m wondering is, do I have to assign myself a task from another project in order for that New Tasks section to show up, or can I get it to show up in My Tasks without activity in another project?


#19

I guess I should’ve looked at your link before I asked that. :wink:


#20

Hehe no problem! Let us know if you have any other questions. :smiley: