Lifehacking!  Until recently I’ve spent more time blogging about it than doing it but in the last few months I’ve found a task/time tracking technique that seems to be working and today had an idea of how to adopt a complimentary method too;  Bullet Journal and Kanban.

Last year I started using Bullet Journal, which the guys at the source can explain far better than I, with a great deal of success.  I used a pocket sized Moleskine which I could take anywhere and it has helped keep track of what I’m meant to be doing long term and when.  The only irritation I found with it was that I tend to plan more than a month ahead so in my 2014 notebook I’ve written out January to December on pages 1 – 24 so my entire year is in one place and after that it follows the same idea as standard.

For my bigger projects I’ve long liked the idea of Kanban but I like to make notes and flesh out ideas in notes so using sticky notes to track the task as well as a separate notebook to track details of the task seemed a pain in the backside.  On the walk back from lunch today an idea, OneNote!

OneNote is a fantastic application, when it was initially pushed out at Microsoft it was a little bit of a pain but once coupled with FolderShare it became brilliant.  This pre-precursor to SkyDrive allowed notebooks to be sync’d across multiple machines via the internet which made the product very useful and with the later versions this is done automatically via SkyDrive.  I’ve been using OneNote for years for keeping track of ideas and research but using it as a Kanban board never occurred to me for long running tasks.  It turned out to be as simple as this;

OneNote Kanban

Create a new notebook called whatever you want, create a section for each state and a page per task.  The three in “In Progress” denotes the WIP (work in progress) limit and as a task changes state simply drag it to the relevant section, job done.  I think the two concepts will work quite well together as I can make a note on the go in my bullet journal notebook and when I get home add it to my backlog if it’s a longer term task or just do it if its a short one.  To handle the context switch between the two I’ve added a market to the bullet journal scheme which is a ‘K’, this denotes the task has been moved to my Kanban backlog and can be ignored from the perspective of the journal.

The journaling technique is working far better for me than the Master Planner or The Chain ever did insofar as I’m still using the journal six months later and as I use OneNote on a daily basis fingers crossed it’ll help too.  Time will tell!  If nothing else it’s a good place to throw all my ideas.