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How to manage your projects in 2020: applications and productivity methods

Three techniques to improve productivity

Time blocking

Doing more and better in less time is my great challenge. Because life escapes without realizing it, and that being tied to work is not good. You have to enjoy family, friends, a walk or a simple coffee. But to achieve this, productivity must be improved, priorities established and the important to be distinguished from the urgent.

However, all that would give for another article. Here what you are going to see are three well-known techniques and why treating them as independent is a mistake when they really complement each other very well.

GTD

If you ask for a technique to improve productivity, it is very likely that GTD will recommend you first. David Allen's method is very powerful, but trying to adopt it 100% is not something for everyone. Therefore, between the combination of lists and what GTD proposes you can get an interesting management of the tasks.

If you are interested in seeing how it works, in addition to thousands of pages on the internet, my best recommendation is that you get the book Organize effectively (18 euros on Amazon)

Pomodoro

The Pomodoro technique is the simplest of all and sometimes the most effective. Basically it consists of assigning times to a task by creating blocks of time. 10 minutes just to answer emails? Okay.

The great advantage of Pomodoro is that it gives you a clear vision of the time you need to perform each task. This is useful in order to implement future techniques or other methods. What you do have to be clear is that when you decide to apply Pomodoro you should forget about the rest of the tasks. If not, it is not effective because you continue to suffer interruptions.

Time blocking

It has certainly been my great discovery of 2019. It is nothing new or revolutionary, surely in one way or another we have all done something similar at some point. The good thing is that when you apply it more strictly, Time blocking allows you to do the same job in just the right time.

In the doist.com blog they have an article (in English) highly recommended where, in addition, you can see some graphics that illustrate very well the chaos of doing things as they arise or applying Time Blocking.

Productivity applications for iOS, Android, Mac and Windows

Knowing the different project and task management techniques is essential to improve productivity. And then, the use of some apps that allow them to be carried out is also interesting. But it is useless to start backwards, downloading a thousand applications without having any idea of ​​the basis of each productive method. Therefore, assuming you already know exactly what you need, here are some of the best productive applications:

  • Forest, application that with a little gamification allows you to apply the Pomodoro technique easily. It is available for different platforms, and can even be used as an extension for Chrome.
  • Todoist has been my default task manager for years, its versatility and options mean that it can be used in many ways. As much as a place to create lists or apply the GTD method. And it also has the added value of being multiplatform and having a web version.
  • Calendar. To apply the method of Time blocking really no extra application is necessary. Simply use any calendar application to establish those blocks of time in which to perform different tasks.

How to apply the three techniques without dying in the attempt

GTD, Pomodoro and Time Blocking can be used at the same time. Simply adapt them and take the best of each to find a management and productivity system valid for each.

In my case, with GTD I establish tasks that I will then do in the time blocks for each activity that I establish through the use of Time Blocking. And finally, Pomodoro helps me to locate in specific moments and to have a measurement of efforts. And you, how do you manage your tasks and projects? What are your productivity tricks?

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