My Task Management Workflow ft. Toggl, Notion & Tana

After years of experimenting with different tools, this is the current iteration of my task management system combining Toggl for time tracking, Notion for planning, and Tana for logging tasks.

April 7, 2024
6 min

Where it all began

My journey with task management systems spans years. As a student, I used bullet journals and mini notebooks that I made to stay on top of assignments and course work. Productivity software was not as ubiquitous as it is today, and the simplicity of pen and paper often proved more convenient than digital alternatives.

Back then, the first app that I used to organize tasks was Habitica. I knew from early on that I enjoyed its gamified features and this is likely where my love for progress bars was born. I was not documenting my systems at the time and unfortunately don’t remember why I moved on from Habitica.


The next tool that caught my eye was Notion - the allure of the all in one workspace captivated me as a solution by having “everything in one place”. By all means, Notion did in fact help me to centralize my digital life but even though I tried many times, I could not for the life of me use Notion for task management back then. I wanted a tool that allowed subtasks to be easily added and tracked but at the time, Notion had not yet launched sub-items. Additionally, I needed a tool that I could access offline and Notion does not offer offline support.

This is when I found Sunsama, a beautiful application which incorporates sustainable productivity principles into the user experience. Sunsama met all of my personal requirements for a task manager:

  • A sleek and intuitive design
  • Subtasks that are easy to add and have the ability to be tracked individually
  • Progress bars for each task and day
  • A mobile app with offline access

Sunsama was wonderful, however, I could not pay $16.00 USD/month (billed annually) for an app at the time. It was out of my technology budget and so, I begrudgingly said goodbye to Sunsama which is actually when I found the glowing tags that lit my path towards Tana.

Managing tasks in Tana has always been magnificently simple. At a basic level, Tana blends the outliner experience of note-taking apps like Workflowy with the database structures found in apps like Notion. Just as Notion has blocks, there are nodes in Tana. Any node can be turned into a checkbox with a command that has become second nature for me. The only thing that’s missing for me in Tana are native progress bars but my current system allows me to work around this using a combination of tools and methodologies that suit my work habits best at this time.

Personal productivity profile

This profile gives some context to what my needs are for this system.

The majority of my day is spent at home working in front of my monitor, Luna. I have practically zero external environmental distractions.

Work habits
I am highly motivated by visual cues of progress. Deadlines help but I have a high propensity for context switching if I don't have a plan for my day. I have a tendency to add too much to my plate than is realistic and therefore benefit from inserting blocks of leisure and rest into my time-tracker.

Time use
I work with clients to build custom Notion systems and to develop digital workflows. I also write and create digital products. Outside of this, I go to the gym, spend time with family, friends and Nora, my PKM system in Tana.

Current Task Management System

The following tools comprise my system:


In October of last year, I was introduced to time tracking on a much more detailed scale than I was previously accustomed. My friend Saidi showed me how he used time tracking to structure his day and I was left in awe. I had no other choice but to try it for myself. It’s now 6 months later and I still use time tracking as a personal productivity method to hone my focus and get things done.

Notion Calendar

A key element of getting things done is ensuring that you have the available time to complete your tasks in the first place.

I use my calendar to schedule recurring activities, one-off events and to view upcoming bookings and meetings.


Notion houses my 12 week year planner which is the framework that I use to focus on achieving specific goals over the quarter.


Tana contains a log of tasks that don’t require my immediate attention. If a task isn’t urgent and is not related to a 12 week year goal, it’s captured in Tana.

Weekly Workflow

Step 1
My week begins in Notion Calendar, where I take a bird’s eye view of the week’s events which are synced with Toggl automatically.

Notion Calendar

Step 2
I then open my 12 week year planner to plan the tactics that I want to focus on for the week. These tactics are specifically aligned with each of my 12 week year goals.

Weekly plan in Notion

Step 3
After this, I go to Toggl and do the following:

  1. Copy all time entries for calendar events
  2. Add estimated time blocks for each of my 12 week year tactics
  3. Add time blocks for leisure and rest
A week in Toggl

By scheduling my 12 week year tactics at the beginning of the week, I ensure that this time is protected in my calendar and that I have a realistic estimate of the week.

Of course, things come up and tactics are moved around during the week but this allows me to set a vision for my ideal week.

Step 4
The last thing that I do is to check my task log in Tana to see if there’s anything from that list which I can get done during the week.

This workflow takes me no longer than 15 minutes on a Monday morning and sets me up for a great week. I’ve been using it for the past 2 months, continuing to refine the process for my needs.

Task log in Tana

Daily Workflow

At the beginning of the day, I check Toggl and begin working, adjusting task lengths and events as the day progresses.

I keep these 3 windows open as an action base in a separate desktop window to reference throughout the day.

Action Base: Toggl, Tana & Notion

Key Takeaways

  • Experiment with different tools to find the right fit for your needs and preferences. Remember to document what you enjoyed and didn't like about using each tool.
  • Identify your work habits and incorporate elements that motivate you into your system.
  • Establish a weekly planning routine to set yourself up for a good week. Remember to schedule leisure and rest time as needed.
  • My task management system in a nutshell:
    • Tasks that need to be completed urgently are immediately time blocked into Toggl
    • Tactics that are related to a 12 week year goal are entered into Notion and time blocked at the beginning of the week
    • Tasks that are not urgent or related to a 12 week year goal are logged in Tana

Workflow development takes time, practice and self-awareness to work best for you. Take your time, keep things simple at the start and have fun!

Support my work by using the affiliate links provided in this post for Notion and Sunsama. I receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you if you make a purchase through one of these links. I only recommend tools that I have personally used and enjoyed. Thank you for your support!

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