A few days ago I was talking to you about how I have learned to squeeze my apple devices fruit of the experience of teleworking since the beginning of 2008. And among other things he said that one of the points that have given me the most results is adapting to what Apple applications offer me.
The reason is simple: few third-party applications take care to reach all the “corners” that these devices offer me. That means sacrificing some advantages, but time has finished showing me that I don’t need them. I’m going to review how do i take advantage of apple apps for everything i need.
Calendar as the center of my productivity
As I have said before, in my particular case, iCloud calendars are my agenda, my digital Moleskine. Not only do I write down the pending events, but also the vast majority of tasks in a style that my colleague Javier Lacort already explained in Xataka. Thus I can estimate the time it will take me to do each task and organize my day wellknowing what I am going to be able to do during the working day and what I am going to have to take with me for the following days.
And again, a key part of that is that I can check that calendar with all my events and tasks from the Apple Watch, which I do less and removes the need to take the iPhone out of my pocket. And I appreciate it, considering that we are talking about an iPhone 13 Pro Max that weighs 250 grams including the case.
Adding a new “task” to the calendar isn’t quick, but a Siri Shortcut fixes it for me
If at any time I want to add a task and I’m walking in the street, I have a Siri Shortcut to which I can tell the task I want to add and this is listed as an event for tomorrow on my calendar. It is placed strategically, at a specific time where I already understand that the task needs to be “processed” to be placed at another time and probably on another calendar.
I’m also recently testing another way to add these ideas or tasks on the fly: a specific list in Reminders that serves as an inbox from where I can process everything to Calendar or any other application.
Reminders for specific tasks
Another application that I take advantage of more and more (and with which it seems that I have finally found the formula to use it well) is Reminders. Until recently I used it only to have the shopping list, but now I have also started to add other lists.
These lists range from a routine of daily habits, household chores to do, specific shopping lists like when you have to take a trip to IKEA, ideas for illustrations or a list where I write down the days when there are new chapters of the series that I follow. All this just a touch away on my watch, since I have a complication that is a direct access to my Reminders lists.
Again: there are specific applications that cover these needs with attractive and careful interfaces, but that they do not comply with details such as that you can consult everything from the Apple Watch. And I kill two birds with one stone, because I almost always save subscriptions to those applications.
Notes for more complex tasks
If one of my tasks is more complex and lengthy, such as a special article that takes me several days to research or a press trip where I need to control additional travel and accommodation information, I take all that information to Notes.
Above all, I take advantage of the flexibility of these notes: in them I can make lists of sub-tasks or include attached files and links, perfect for setting up a well-laid-out “report” with the entire organization and what I have to do. Where I take advantage of it the most is on hectic day trips like those at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, where every second counts.
In Notes, finally, I also usually save notes from meetings that I usually do by videoconference. I have a folder dedicated entirely to the notes from those meetings, classified by year, to check what was agreed and how the objectives have evolved over time.
Combining those three applications I get a balance in which I minimize distractions, enjoy full integration, do not need to depend on external developers and save money. News like Freeform have not managed to hook me, although I do not rule out that somehow I end up using them for certain things. After changing habits several times over the last decade, I never rule anything out.