Burning Down OmniFocus

Over the last several months, the number of projects I’m overseeing at work has changed more times than I can begin to count. One of the many side effects of this is that my OmniFocus project list — and overall organization — went to hell pretty quickly.

About a month ago, I reverted to using Remember the Milk for critical tasks. I used RTM for years, and really like it as a service. It’s no where near as powerful as OmniFocus is, but it got me by until this weekend.

When I burned my OmniFocus setup to the ground.

Instead of the nearly dozen folders I had before, I now have four:

  • 512: Anything related to this site, my podcast or LLC
  • Home: Any project related to family, myself or the house itself
  • Nerd: Projects include things like my GTD and data management
  • Work: You know, what pays the bills

Aligning my folders this way means OmniFocus more closely mimics my life, and what I do with my time.

(As before, I’m not using Contexts for anything. I don’t use tags in any software, actually. My brain just doesn’t work that way.)

Moving down from the folder level, I re-worked my projects, combining what I could, and re-naming some to make more sense. For example, I had HR-related tasks and my weekly managerial tasks in separate projects. Now, they’re combined in to one, since these repeating tasks are closely related.

While I still have a ways to go, I feel like — at least with my standard set of repeating tasks — I’ve got a much better grip on things.

New projects will continue to be created, while old ones are marked complete, of course. I hope to keep these as streamlined as possible. For example, instead of having one massive project for all the deliverables my department is working on, I now have separate projects for each item. While this seems counterintuitive to my goal of cleaning things out, it means that my OmniFocus data should more closely reflect what I’m actually working on.

Which is the point.