Daily time budgeting for ongoing projects?


#1

I use OmniFocus to track things I’m doing, or thinking of maybe doing. But I don’t use any software to help me divide my time between a few ongoing, priority projects. I’m about to organize something myself by flagging projects in OmniFocus and keeping a daily hours count in good old Stickies. But I’m wondering if there is a feature or other popular software out there for this.

Example: say I’ve got a three things I’d like to make progress on: 1. Building a software app. 2. Studying Spanish 3. Increasing physical flexibility by stretching exercises. So I’d like to make sure that each weekday I spend at least 3 hours on #1, 2 hours on #2, and half an hour on #3. Is there a good way to do this in OmniFocus? Are there other good programs out there for this?

Rob


#2

Hi Rob. I use Hours Time Tracking https://www.hourstimetracking.com But to be honest I’m always on the lookout for a better/cheaper alternative. I think because I originally bought the app, I don’t get any restrictions on the iPhone app (which might not be the case for new users), but the sync, so I could also use it on my Mac, I feel is too expensive to justify. However, I’ve found so far that all time tracking software is quite expensive.

I work a small number of different clients, often switching between them as emails and phone calls come in, so it’s imperative so have something to track the time. I’m very new to Omnifocus, but I’m not aware of any time tracking features.


#3

I use Strides and like it a lot. It’s especially good to use on the Iphone. I have the paid version, but it’s free for limited use (more limited now than before, though, from what I can see).


#4

I think a custom perspective/script could work for these.

  • Use the duration feature of OF to specify how long certain tasks will take.
  • Create custom perspectives for each “project” that show all tasks that you have scheduled and have a duration.
  • Then you can tally in your head during your reviews or you could use an AppleScript to count up the duration for you and tell you if you need to schedule more or not.

#5

(I have not tried this so I don’t know how well it would work but someone that has might chime in here…)

You can have a Single Item Project list with those three items in them and have them Repeat every day. Fill in the estimated duration you want for each. When you finish each task for that day, check it off and it should pop up on your calendar for the next day.
[later]
Just tried it out and it does work. Just have to fill in a first Due date so its up on your Forecast screen.


#6

Thanks everybody for the suggestions; I’m trying a few.

The problem with using the OmniFocus repeating items, for me, is that I don’t want my daily forecast to be cluttered with that kind of work. These items are not “due” in the same sense as the others. It might work if there were a way to color code or filter out a certain tag from the Forecast. Then I could include those items in a custom perspective.