Setting time slots for my Asana tasks

Hey there,

I’ve been using Asana for several months, but I am still struggling in integrating it in my workflow.
In the past I’ve always struggled with tasklists, because tasks tend to accumulate at a much higher rate than I can finish/delete them.
Instead, I’ve come up with a system I quite like: I usually create important tasks directly in my calendar, including a rough estimation of the time it would take me to complete it (30min? 1h? 4h?), so it forces me to assign it to a specific time slot in the coming workdays, and to navigate between the many meetings and other tasks already planned during these days.

Asana proves very handy for setting up big projects or small tasks, and for teamwork, but I can’t find a way to actually know when to work on what while taking into account the other “disturbances” in my busy calendar. The calendar view in Asana doesn’t know about planned meetings, and the Asana tasks imported into Google Calendar are only full-day tasks and can’t be moved around. Here is what my Google Calendar usually looks like (it actually often includes overlapping tasks :see_no_evil: ):


If I don’t manage to finish a tasks as expected, I’m free to move it to the next slot available, just like I can redefine the due date of an Asana task, but still keeping an eye on other activities.

I can’t imagine that I’m the only one having such a workflow, so I’m hoping that someone can give hints on how to include Asana in it? (without having to create new tasks in my calendar according to the tasks listed in Asana of course…)

Thanks for reading so far, looking forward for some enlightening ideas!
/Simon

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Hi @SimonS welcome to the community.

Would love to be able to provide an easy answer but unfortunately don’t have one.

The one option that has been explored in this community is setting up the “Today Section” in “My Tasks” with the timeslots similar to your calendar.

Tasks that are due today you can the slot into the relevant starting timeslot. You can the use generic meeting tasks for meetings or potentially the task associated with that meeting.

The Upcoming Section, you can then put next week’s days as sections in there…

Hope that Helps…

Jason.

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Not having the due time used in the calendar is a big issue. I’d say you can organize into My Tasks as @Jason_Woods mentioned. You can also build several reports to see today tasks, next week tasks…

Thank you both for your answers.
I have tried the “My task” option before, but it doesn’t allow me to plan exactly when in the day I’ll work on a specific task, nor to take into account external meeting requests.

I’m now considering the option of extracting a CSV/JSON of My Tasks e.g. every Monday, and automatically create calendar tasks for each Asana task. Without linking it to Asana (i.e. a one-off extract from Asana), it would be in a specific private calendar on which I will have all permissions, including resizing and moving the tasks around for this week.

Other suggestions are still welcome!

Cheers,
/Simon

@SimonS, In case you haven’t seen in, here’s how @John_Loftis handles this including screenshot:

Larry

Another option is to try https://asana.com/apps/project-buddy This is a 2way sync with Google Calendar.

2 Likes

Thanks for this. Indeed, meetings with colleagues could even be set up only in Asana and synchronized in the calendar for the overview and notifications, and tasks could then be moved around in Asana only. However for now most of the meetings invitations I’m receiving are not created/copied in Asana, and new meeting requests pop-up also during the day, so I don’t see it realistic to copy meetings in Asana every day.

Thanks for this, I’m trying it now!

Current status of my experiment: Importing the CSV from Asana is not easy. Instead I’m trying synchronizing my calendar the standard way (read-only), and every Monday I’d look for all tasks in the Asana-synchronized calendar which are due this week and create 1h tasks in my private calendar, which I can then also resize and move around.

Glad you have been able to progress @SimonS when you have it sorted and like how it is working would be good if you could post back here on how you have gone and what your workflow looks like so others can benefit…

Jason.

I tried using Zapier for this, but it doesn’t appear to be sending along the Due Time field, and so it’s just putting all of the tasks as due at 12:00am.

Thank you all for sharing your ideas and suggestions!
The 2-ways sync suggested by @groblerpaul is pretty neat, but it changes (by design) the date in Asana when I move the task around, which is somehow not completely satisfying to me either.

So for now I’ve stopped tinkering and settled with what I was looking into last week (which is very similar to @BrettInSeattle’s suggestion) :

  • Standard synchronization (1-way) of Google calendar with Asana’s “My tasks”
  • Use Integromat (Zapier would also work) to scan this “My Asana tasks” calendar every Monday (or whenever I run it) for tasks due before next week (i.e. including overdue), and copy them into another private calendar called “Tasks planning”. The due date is also copied in the appointments’ body.
  • Move and resize the events in this “Tasks planning” calendar to accommodate for other events in my other calendars (especially meetings in my public calendar). The due date is still visible in the appointment’s body even if I move it around.

And voilà. I don’t display the “My Asana tasks” calendar (which only has all-day events), only my public and “Tasks planning” calendars.
Not very clean, but it does the job for now!

Cheers,
/Simon

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Thanks for sharing @SimonS

Jason.