8 votes

Anybody use Strikethru?

I used Bullet Journal for a year, then went back to Org mode with Orgzly on mobile. I find I'm more productive with pen and paper b/c when I see a rabbit hole I can't do nothing but jump into it and go right down, and trying to conform to ways app devs' workflows and hack them to behave the way I want cause friction which is for me greater than that of dealing with a meatspace physical notebook. Bullet Journal was nice, but I wonder if Strikethru could be even nicer. I never fully conform to these methods, but they are generally nice starting points to build a custom one, so I generally like starting out with them.

My use case is, I have four types of tasks: projects, like "study statistics" or "transcribe scans" which can take weeks or months to complete, and sometimes have deadlines; todos which have no specific completion time (e.g. long time shopping lists, books to buy, stuff to check back on later, things to research); tasks that are scheduled for a certain date/time or a range thereof; and lastly tasks that recur on varying intervals, like posting the thread to ~books every other week or completing a particular task that pertains to a project, say reading pages from a book that is relevant to the "study statistics" project. Bullet Journal provided a means for all of this, but the amount of rescheduling and rewriting was inconvenient, and inconvenient is the evil enemy of making habits and getting things done for a fucked up procrastinator like me. When I look at Strikethru, I am not sure if it can handle this, if it's too simple for more complex stuff. So I wonder what you guys do with it. I'd be glad if you could share your workflows and/or advice me on how I could make use of this particular system, or anything else out there!

Edit: prior art:

I've commented on both of these talking about how I use a modified Bullet Journal method.

2 comments

  1. DataWraith Link
    While I can't really comment on Strikethru, it does seems fairly complicated -- and complicated is the enemy of getting things done. It makes it easy to fall into the trap of organizing your todo...

    While I can't really comment on Strikethru, it does seems fairly complicated -- and complicated is the enemy of getting things done. It makes it easy to fall into the trap of organizing your todo list instead of actually doing tasks. I might be wrong here because I haven't tried Strikethru myself, but that's the hunch I get.

    As a fellow "fucked up procrastinator", I have no silver bullet either, but I wanted to share my experience in the hope that it is useful.

    I've tried many different productivity tools over the years (that's a great way to procrastinate...), but there are only two that stand out as "almost it" to me:

    1. Autofocus by Mark Forster

      This is the simplest possible system: keep everything in a notebook and scan it from top to bottom. Do whatever feels ready to be done when you come across it. Working just 5 minutes on something is fine -- in that case, strike it from the list and re-enter it at the bottom. There are some additional rules on where to begin scanning and at what point to dismiss tasks that you aren't going to do, but that's about it. Tasks can be any granularity; I tend to start with project-like tasks ("study statistics") and then explode them into a list of smaller, more specific tasks ("read chapter 3").

      To me, it also is important that the notebook with the tasks be physical instead of digital. I can't quite put my finger on why that should make such a big difference, but attempting to transplant Autofocus to Workflowy didn't work at all.

      I did, however, use Google Calendar in addition to Autofocus in order to get reminders for scheduled or recurring tasks that I could then (re-)enter into my list.

    2. Taskwarrior

      Where Autofocus errs on the side of simplicity, Taskwarrior is extremely full-featured and customizable. Recurring tasks, organization into projects, tagging, auto-prioritization and much much more. You can bend it to whatever your process is.

      The killer feature for me was the ability to defer tasks to a later date so that my list was always short and unintimidating. For example, you can add a task to write a birthday card and then defer it until a week before the birthday in question so it won't clutter your task list until then. The auto-prioritization is also nice to cut through indecision when you are unsure what to do next.

      You do have to be careful not to fall into the "I'm organizing my todos, I'm productive!"-trap though.

    It's kind of ironic that the two tools that worked best for me are at the extremes of simplicity and complexity respectively. Maybe there's a lesson to be learnt here, but so far it has eluded me.

    3 votes
  2. ReapersGale Link
    I just use a power list I've got on a whiteboard in my room (positioned so it can be seen from bed or whenever I leave/enter the room). It's pretty simple in that it's the 5 most important things...

    I just use a power list I've got on a whiteboard in my room (positioned so it can be seen from bed or whenever I leave/enter the room). It's pretty simple in that it's the 5 most important things I need to do before I can do whatever else I want to do; If I'm successful in doing that I win that day and can get to working on a streak of days, weeks, etc.

    Current list:

    1. Get enough sleep (though I am considering replacing this one as it's an easy way to start the day off on a fail - like today).
    2. Exercise
    3. Read a book (Completed on bus on the way to work)
    4. Study (Preparing for CISSP certification using Cybrary)
    5. Eat well (Going to replace this one as it doesn't really work in the context of something that can be completed before I can slack off and does often make going out for a feed and a few pints with friends a fail).
    1 vote