The best web apps built around popular productivity methods
Do you swear by time blocking, the Eisenhower matrix or the Kanban technique to get your work done? Want to go digital with these analog productivity techniques? It’s easy to do if you find the right app.
To help you out, we’ve rounded up the best apps designed around popular productivity methods. We’ve selected only web apps to ensure maximum portability, but you’re sure to find suitable desktop alternatives with a quick web search if you prefer those instead.
1. Taskade: For the Bullet Journal Method
The Bullet Journal method is very popular for its versatility as a note taker, to-do list, diary, calendar, etc. It involves quick journaling of ideas, events, etc. in the form of bulleted lists. To familiarize yourself with this method, read the official introduction to Bullet Journaling.
While you can use apps like Evernote like Bullet Journal, you’ll have to put less effort into setting up your journal if you opt for Taskade. That’s true even if you skip Taskade’s Bullet Journal template and start with a blank slate instead. Checklists, notes, attachments, sections, comments—Taskade has it all covered. You can view your journal entries as a list, table, or even a mind map.
Taskade is one of those apps that makes bullet journaling easy. A quick tour of the demo version of Taskade should convince you.
The Bullet Journal method has a few official apps, but these are only available for mobile devices. Taskade is a better option if you want a bullet journal app that works on all popular platforms.
Visit: Taskade (free, premium subscription available)
2. Chains.cc: for the method Do not break the chain
Do you want to come up with 10 ideas around a given topic or write a thousand words every day? Chains.cc motivates you to accomplish such tasks by tracking your success streak for each activity.
When you see a chain of wins created by reaching your goals each day, would you want to “break the chain” by missing a day? Preferably not. The Don’t Break the Chain method and Chains.cc both rely on this psychological dilemma to push you to continue your streak of success. The app lets you create a new channel for each habit you want to create or activity you want to track progress on.
For each task you complete, mark it as completed by clicking its circle in the corresponding day string. If you want Chains.cc to give you a break on weekends or any other day, you can configure each chain to skip specific days.
Visit: Channels.cc (Free)
3. Tomato Timers: For the Pomodoro Technique
If you’re struggling to complete a single task, the Pomodoro technique can make it easier for you. It’s so simple that you can implement it with just about any analog or digital timer device, online or offline. (Many task and project management apps these days include a Pomodoro timer.)
To summarize this method: you work in 25 minute intervals (called Pomodoros) with 5 minute breaks in between. Every four Pomodoros you take a break of 20 or 30 minutes.
See how easy it is to work with the Pomodoro technique? We recommend Tomato Timers to time and track your work with this method. You can use the app without registering! All you have to do is list your tasks, hit the timer button, and focus on completing the tasks one by one.
If you want to complete four Pomodoros in a row without having to start the timer manually after each Pomodoro, press the Loop button in the app.
Tomato Timers is also a great app for working with the Ivy Lee method. If you follow this method, you have exactly six tasks on your to-do list in descending order of importance, and you go through them one by one. You can edit the timer to set custom intervals for work and breaks.
Visit: Tomato Timers (Free)
4. Trello: for the Kanban technique
Trello is one of the best digital implementations of Kanban, the Japanese task management technique.
A Trello board gives you an overview of your project, while cards break the project down into action steps or tasks. Lists on the board break down the tasks according to their progress. To learn more about using Trello for project management, read our guide on the subject:
The app has made the technique so popular that in the online world Trello is Kanban and Kanban is Trello. So if you swear by Kanban offline, using the online Trello app is a no-brainer.
Visit: Trello (free and premium subscription available)
5. Eisenhower matrix: for the Eisenhower matrix method
The Eisenhower Matrix helps you prioritize your tasks by forcing you to place them into one of four categories:
- Important and urgent: Tasks to do first
- Important, but not urgent: Tasks to plan
- Urgent, but not important: Tasks to delegate
- Not urgent and not important: Tasks to ignore
These categories form a 2X2 matrix and, as you might have guessed, the tasks in the first two categories are the ones that really need your attention.
The Eisenhower Matrix app gives you a web-based editable matrix you can feed your tasks into. If you like working with a timer to stay focused on the task at hand, turn it on. Focus mode within the app.
Visit: Eisenhower Matrix (free)
6. Plan: For time blocking method
Blocking time is an effective way to stay focused. In this method, you schedule your tasks in your calendar, assigning them to specific blocks of time. A web application that makes this task easier is Plan.
Plan integrates a to-do list with your Google or Outlook calendar. You’ll not only see the events and meetings you’ve scheduled, but you’ll also be able to schedule new tasks side-by-side. The Chronology seeing in the app is a nice touch. It helps you visualize your workload for the whole month.
The app doesn’t look simple, but it looks easy to navigate and has plenty of features for people who like to plan their day in detail.
If you want a project management app that not only includes your calendar but also a Pomodoro timer, try Toggl, TickTick, or SkedPal. Trello is also a great alternative to these apps when you enable the Power-Up Calendar.
Visit: Plan (free, premium subscription available)
The secret to productivity is…
There is no secret to productivity. You need either a healthy dose of willpower or a combination of the right tools and techniques to make willpower irrelevant. If you prefer the latter, pick the app that matches your preferred method of productivity and start working on your to-do list!
Want a head start on your tasks? Prepare a weekly plan in less than 30 minutes!