Todoist 101: Rock out your to do list in the easiest way possible

I won't lie. It took me a hot second to figure out what sort of list tracker or project management/workflow tool would work for me. 

I tried regular ol pen and paper, notes app, google calendar, Trello...nothing was really working for me the way I needed it too. 

Until Todoist came into my life and everything changed. (so dramatic right?) 

So yes over a year ago a friend introduced me to Todoist and I have been using it religiously ever since. It is so minimal and does exactly what I need it to do which is why I love it. Its not hard to figure out to use although there is a slight learning curve that comes along with it. There aren't a lot of bells and whistles (which is why I think it doesn't get a ton of love out there in the creative business world) but it WORKS and it works well. 

So today I'm going to show you a bit about how I use it so you can determine if it may be right for you and if so, some tips and tricks to get you started!

And just as a sidenote....I am NOT an affiliate for them and am getting nothing at all for writing this blog post. I simply believe in sharing about amazing tools that work for my business. ;-) 

How do I use todoist? | Workflow and to do list software | Organization for my small business

Setting up your projects in Todoist

Todoist is basically one giant to do list that you can categorize, label and filter in lots of different ways. You can assign "tasks" to projects and then make them due on a certain date, add their priority level or label the tasks as well.

How you set up your projects will essentially be the backbone of your Todoist. Everyones projects might look a little different based on how they work and the type of work that they do, so use my examples to learn how the system works and then tweak to work for you! 

When setting up your projects, think about the areas of your business that require keeping track of and separate them out - color code and organize them in order of importance or alphabetical or however you prefer to see them in the list. 

How do I use todoist? Todoist for creative small business owners

For my projects I have things separated out based on the different areas of work that I currently do. I also have a Family project where I can keep things that don't really have to do with work but I still need a to do list for them. 

You can also have main and sub projects to make things easier to organize. So for example, I have a project for Wedding Clients and then underneath that are all of my current wedding clients as individual projects. 

How do I use todoist? | Todoist for creative business owners

How to add tasks in todoist

Once you have a project set up, you can then go through the process of adding tasks to that particular project. 

For the most part this is intuitive but there are a few hidden things that can make it easier to organize the tasks within your project. 

1 / You can move tasks underneath each other so you can have main and sub tasks in each project

This is helpful if you want to separate tasks out in groups throughout the cycle. For example if you had a wedding client you could have the MAIN tasks be something like: After booked, After wedding day, Album creation etc... and then each of those main tasks can have sub tasks underneath them. 

2 / You can move, label, set priority, add a date, or duplicate tasks by clicking the three dots next to the task (you can do more but these are the main things I find myself doing) 

3 / You can add a * in front of any task and it will remove the O in front of the task.

In Todoist, once you mark a task complete it marks all subtasks also complete and then removes it from the screen. If you want to continue to see that task on the screen then add the * in front of any task an it will remove the O so you can no longer mark that complete. 

4 / You can create a task list or work flow and then save it as a template. 

This is probably one of my favorite features in todoist! You can create an entire task list or workflow for a particular project (for example a wedding client) and then save that as a template so you don't have to recreate it for the next client. You simply export the project as a .csv and then import it into the new project when you are ready. This save SO much time and effort and allows you to generate new projects in less than 30 seconds. 

I also save a project folder of just my templates so I know right where they are and can use them at any point I need them. 

Setting up a template in todoist | using templates in todoist

Setting reoccurring tasks in todoist

Another one of my absolute favorite things about todoist is setting reoccurring tasks. You have the ability to set a task that you do daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly (etc...) to come back up on your todolist at the right time.


In the inbox section of my todoist, I have a task called "reoccurring tasks" and then I just add all of my reoccurring tasks underneath that, set the structure on how they are to reoccur and then that's it. I can deal with them when they come up. 

How you set a task to be reoccurring is to simply type the parameters in the task date. For can type in "every Monday at 10am" or "the first of the month" or "every three months" etc...and viola! It just takes it from there! 

using reoccurring tasks in todoist

Sync with google calendar and then move to project

The last thing I want to mention about Todoist is the google calendar integration. This is another awesome feature that I looooove about Todoist. Although the calendar integration is only available if you upgrade, the upgrade is around $25 a year so it is well worth it. 

Integrating your google calendar means that tasks on your Todoist show on the calendar and vise versa. So if you add a calendar reminder it will show in your Todoist inbox and then you can assign it to a project from there. This just makes everything easier and you can see things all in one place. 

I absolutely love Todoist and am so glad I discovered it when I did. I actually wish I would have known about it sooner because this year has been absolutely one of my most productive. 

I hope you have found this post helpful in some way!! Even though Todoist looks and really is very minimal, you can do SO much with it to keep your tasks organized and on point so you don't drop the ball, forget parts of your process or leave clients hanging. I have really only scratched the surface in all that it can do! Visit the Todoist blog for more great tips and tricks on how to use it to best suit your needs!