GTD Journey: Back and forth...to Nirvana
Every once in a while I feel unsatisfied about how I am managing my projects and tasks. It’s a recurring thing and I know now that perfectionism has some of the blame. Looking back at all my past iterations, I’ve used the Nirvana app the most over the years. I stick with it for a while, then I see something shinier, experiment with the new app, only to go back to Nirvana again.
My last distraction was Microsoft To Do. The company I work for transitioned to Microsoft for everything: emails, files, calendars, chat, meetings, the whole system. I was already familiar with Outlook and OneDrive, but Microsoft To Do was new to me. So I tried it. I can say that I tried it at least 4 times over the last year. Not to mention the times I tried Todoist as well. I believe the sequence was:
- Aug, 2021: First test of MS To Do. I didn’t like it.
- Sep, 2021: I tried Todoist (not for the first time). I got overwhelmed by all the tags/filters options (not the first time this happened…)
- Oct, 2021: Back to MS To Do. Maybe I can make it work? Also, emojis are so cute!
- Jan, 2022: I got back to good old Nirvana. So simple and organized! 😎
- May, 2022: Tried MS To Do again. Can I let go of having the next actions linked to projects? The UI is so beautiful, and tasks can show up alongside Outlook or even inside my calendar. Cool!
- June, 2022: Things got out of control, I was handling a lot of projects at once at work so I went back to Nirvana to gain some clarity. I also noticed I barely used the integrations with Outlook Calendar.
- Sep, 2022: But it would be so cool to have my emails integrated with my tasks! Wouldn’t it? The emojis were cute 🤩 So, back to MS To Do, trying to manage 2 separate accounts (personal and work).
- Oct, 2022: It was too much overhead to have two separate MS To Do accounts, I didn’t know which Inbox to put things in, I constantly neglected one or the other and things started to get off the rails. So back to my trusted tool: Nirvana ⭐.
- Jan, 2023: I read somewhere about new Todoist features coming up and I tried it again. I created a brand new account, got the Premium subscription, and set it up just to feel like it wasn’t for me anymore. In less than 20 days I cancelled my account and asked for a refund. Again, I had too many options to customize it and it became very distracting.
- Feb, 2023: I decided to solve the 2 accounts issue with MS To Do, by using the lists sharing feature between my personal and work accounts. It was okay, but I still thought it was confusing to have 2 inboxes. Also, since in MS To Do we have to use the “Tasks” folder as the Inbox, I noticed this cognitive discomfort of not having an actual “Inbox” there. It may sound like a petty detail, but it really bothers me! Capturing is something I struggle with and having any sort of resistance destroys my ability to get things out of my head.
- Mar, 2023 (aka, Today): I moved back to Nirvana! It just felt like home. I know how it works, things have their specific places, and I trust it more in the end😍.
I decided to write this timeline to try to understand why I was jumping from tool to tool. It became clear that Nirvana was the to-do list manager I used for the longest time because I like it! And so I’m making a decision to continue using it, even though sometimes I miss some colors and emojis.
Looking back I can say that when my life got busy I would always rely on Nirvana to manage all my commitments. It gives me the type of clarity I can’t really find in other tools.
So I’m making a personal commitment to not distract myself again and to stick with Nirvana for at least a year! Focus! 🎯
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By Noisy Deadlines Minimalist in progress, nerdy, introvert, skeptic. I don't leave without my e-reader.