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Google Calendar

22/08/16

In the past couple weeks, I’ve talked about using Todoist for my tasks list and my Google calendar for appointments;  I love the ease and convenience of both apps. Like I said last week, I can’t imagine going back to a printed calendar. You can even set the calendar to ‘pop up’ a notice ahead of time so you won’t forget, or to give you enough time to leave.

A strange thing happened yesterday- a notice popped up that I didn’t know anything about; I do have my calendar shared with my husband, since I try to add everything to it- his days off, his appointments, upcoming bike or family events, etc. This gives him the ability to see what we have going on in our ministry, business or personal life before scheduling something.  He is able to add or change things too, but normally he doesn’t do that.

So when this notice popped up, I couldn’t figure out what it was; when I read it, I knew it was a spam event. I didn’t know how it got on there, though, so I checked out Google calendar settings- and this is what I found.

Click on the ‘cog wheel’ in the upper right corner of the calendar; then click ‘settings’.  About 7 items down, it says “Events from Gmail” and a choice to add automatically is ticked by default.  Un-tick that box on all accounts attached to the calendar, and that should correct things.

For the past 25 years or so, I’ve used some type of paper planner; for the most part I’ve used Franklin Covey products, but I’ve also used other brands as well. For the past year or so, I actually had created and printed my own planner pages – I loved the freedom of having the exact pages I needed, but because I’m involved in so many things my planner had become cumbersome. Classic sized pages in a 2 inch binder – LOTS of pages. But I used it because I needed the space.

I love technology, but I haven’t been able to find an app or program that worked to suit me. But a few weeks ago, I decided it was absolutely the right time to switch completely over from paper to technology. I have a smart phone that I love using, and I have a tablet, and of course computers.

I started doing some research – I knew I wanted something that both worked from my PC and an app. I didn’t want a monthly subscription fee; I don’t mind paying a fee but it had to be reasonable. I found a couple of apps that I liked to start with, but after a few days I found drawbacks that just didn’t work for me. I found Todoist a few months ago, but it didn’t seem to click with me at the time. But I decided to try it one more time and that time it worked!

Some of the things I really like:

  • You can set some tasks to a certain location- so when you’re in Office Depot for example, it reminds you to pick up a box of paper or some ink cartridges (obviously you have to have your phone set to know where you are)
  • there are no limit to the number of projects you can have – I have one project for each customer I work with, and then tasks underneath for jobs for each customer
  • you can set tasks with specific dates or no dates at all- what I prefer to do is to list all tasks for a specific job and then date the first task to be done for today; the ones that are required to be done today are flagged red; once I get those done, I work on the others; any I don’t complete today are moved to later in the week. As I complete one task for a job, I add the next task to the ‘dated’ list; I always know where I am on any project.
  • as I mark tasks done, they are moved to the ‘done’ list, but I can go back and look at them later. if I do things during the day that pop up that weren’t on my list, I add them and then tick them off.
  • another cool thing is that it keeps ‘score’ on how many tasks I’ve done. you earn badges for levels. it’s just a little extra incentive to get it done!

So for less than a year’s worth of dated pages for my printed planner, I have a very nice task list that I can access anywhere – from my phone, laptop or tablet.

I was already using my Google contacts, but I started using my Google calendar for appointments and events. I also have my calendar shared so my husband can see what’s coming up from his phone too.

Those who know me well know how much I like writing things down, so I do still carry a pad and pen to jot notes. But now I’m moving them over to Google docs, or Todoist or my calendar.