LazyMeter Sorts Through the Clutter, Simplifies Your To-Do List

Q: I use a Google Calendar and a to-do list attached to my email client, but I think I spend more time trying to keep track of all the things I need to get done than I spend actually completing them. There has to be an easier way. Right?

LazyMeterGrab-Post.jpg

A: Ever have one of those days where the clock starts to wind down, the sun starts to set and you feel like you have accomplished exactly nothing? Very little work done; a spreadsheet still open on your computer, uncompleted. Having days like that too often lately? LazyMeter is a simple new Web-based application that is built around the idea that you'll be much more fulfilled if you accomplish something, anything, and remind yourself of that. You're already doing things, you just need to give yourself more credit.

"There's a mistaken belief that people are inherently lazy," according to LazyMeter's mission statement. "Actually, they're overwhelmed. As a result, they forget to do things, and they procrastinate. With the size of the average to-do list, it's no surprise. Our inboxes are overflowing with information. Each new app and blog takes up more of our time. No matter how much we do, there's more to be done."

To help you sort through the clutter, LazyMeter has launched a new to-do list -- "your to-do list, one day at a time." Every day you log in and see only those things that you want to finish before tomorrow. You can start them, put them on hold, mark them as finished or, if necessary, kick them to another day. If you choose the last option, any kicked items will disappear from view until the designated date.

"The webapp also lets you drag and drop tasks and re-order them to match their priority and the order in which you want to work on them and set reminders (or multiple reminders) so you'll remember to follow up on an item," according to Lifehacker's write-up of the service. "At the end of the day, any work you haven't done yet you can press 'pause' on to have it bumped to the next day." Lifehacker provides a quick summary of the basics, but it misses one of LazyMeter's best features: A chart that shows you how many tasks you're completed and/or paused. That simple circle shows you just how well you spent your time that day.

Tools mentioned in this entry:

More questions? View the complete Toolkit archive.

Image: LazyMeter.

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Nicholas Jackson is a former associate editor at The Atlantic.

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