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I have had my Mac almost 3 weeks now and the more I use it the more I like it.  One of the things that I like a lot is a program called OmniFocus.  It is personal productivity software that I found on my MLTI Mac and it intrigued me, when I first saw it back in December.  So when I got my new Mac, I installed it and went through the trial period to see if I would like it or not.  

To say that I like it would be an huge understatement!  I have tried or looked at many different types of personal productivity products (paper, PDA’s, Outlook, project management software and a variety of other productivity software) in my attempts to tame my workload and never have found one that meets my needs until now. 

I see my workload as a series of inter-related projects and activities, that need to be tracked and broken down into variety of steps needed to complete each project.  The steps have differing start and due dates, which often overlap with other projects, events or appointments, for which I needed to find a way to keep track of everything. In the past, I have gotten overloaded or bombarded because I didn’t plan out my workload appropriately and we all know how that feels – it sucks.  OmniFocus is the first personal productivity software that has allowed me to setup my workflow to the detail I want and with the flexibility of clicking a button to change the view and focus just on one project or one “context” when I want or need to.

I have almost all my data in OmniFocus now (except for my day-to-day teaching stuff) and am finding that I don’t feel as pressured about what happening professionally and personally.  Now I know what is coming up and when it is due with a quick click of my mouse. 

Another feature that I love is the ability to easily click open a pop-up and enter an item into OmniFocus while in any program.  This ability has already helped me a great deal, for those times when I “remember” something that I have to do in the middle of something else.  I simply click two keys, then type in my “brainstorm” and get back to what I was doing instead of forgetting that “great idea” or something that I have to get done.

It does take a few times to get used to how the program is setup and get all of the data/projects you want to keep track of, but you can make it as simple or complex as you need for your personal productivity management style.  I can’t wait to start learning some of the more advanced functions that it does have, which I have looked at, but not used yet.  I have a feeling that these features once I master them will help me a lot more, without creating more work for me as some program do.

OmniFocus is so much more than a TODO list and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to get control of their workload.  I am thinking seriously about introducing it to some of my students since it is on their laptops and part of what we need to teach Special Education students is how to manage and keep track of what they need to get done.  This would definitely help many students and from what I have seen – quite a few teachers also ;).

Try OmniFocus it might just tame your in box too.  I found it to be well though-out program that I chose to purchase with my own money…that is the ultimate recommendation from – I actually spent money on it. 🙂

DISCLAIMER:  I did not receive any compensation of any kind for writing this review.  These are my thoughts on a product that I have started to use and in fact I purchased a copy through their educator program. 

 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.

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