Productivity

Managing your to do list with Gmail

Here is a little tip for managing your to-do list within Gmail. As Gmail is usually the place I go to first when online, I figured a way to get even more out of it than just email…

The latest version of Gmail allows you to tag your emails with labels, which can help you organize them as you wish: from “important” to “Facebook invites” via “Holidays”, the possibilities are endless…

How do I turn Gmail into my favourite to do list manager? Very simple:

1. Create tags of the priorities you want to give to your tasks

I have chosen “1 – To do“, “2 – To do” and “3 – To do” and gave each of them unique colors. Flashy red for the important stuff, and cold blue for tasks that are not so urgent. Only your creativity will stop you here (Note: the tag “important” is not available – sign a native Gmail to do list may be in the works?)

2. Send emails to yourself

As you see below, I send emails to myself with actual tasks as subject. I then tag this email to give it a priority. When a task is done, I remove the tag and archive the email.

This of course lacks some functionality other to-do list managers may have: set deadlines, set reminders etc. You may also argue it is a bit of overhead. However I have found it be very powerful and efficient to get things done. The conversation feature in Gmail also comes nicely into play here to write update about a task’s progress.

The Lifehacker blog has a lot more about managing to-do lists in general and how to get things done.

How do you manage your to do lists?

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