How I finally ended up using Apple Calendar and Reminders to manage my time and stay productive

4 min readApr 17, 2020


A screenshot of my home screen

Over the years it has been “a pain in the arse” to stay productive even though I have a list of tasks and things planned out for the day. Managing time per hour has been a huge problem until I came across Apple Calendar 🗓 and Reminders applications.

Let me tell you a story of my transition to these apps

In the year 2016, I decided to start planning my daily activities. This was birthed after several hours of reading and studying the lives of several great men. Then I realized that one of the secrets to their successes is in their time management (what they do per time). Instantly, my eyes 👀 opened to the fact that the same 24 hours a day opportunity I have is the same they have. This got me thinking 🤔 and I was motivated to walk in their footsteps 🦶🦶🦶.

I quickly went online to check out tools 🧰 to aid in managing my time. It was there I discovered task management apps like Sticky Notes, Google Keep, Microsoft To-Do, OneNote and many more. After contemplating on what to stick with, I decided to go with Microsoft To-Do and OneNote since it was native to the Microsoft Phone I was using at that time. I used OneNote to list out all my tasks for the week then used Microsoft To-Do to break each task into steps to be done daily and tick after being completed. I went as far as syncing the apps with my laptop 💻 so I could follow up the tasks when behind the computer but in the end, using the apps to automate my life didn’t work for me.

Maybe I was too fast or my mind wasn’t ready, I didn’t know 🤷🏿‍♂️.

I battled with this until June 2018 when I switched to an Apple iPhone. After switching, I decided to dump Microsoft To-Do and stick with OneNote. A few moments later, a feeling emanated from within me that I can use the inbuilt Calendar and Reminders applications to achieve my aim. This feeling was as a result of this:

I love using applications developed by the OS developer. It secretes dopamine in my brain 🧠 and gives me a native feeling.

I started playing with the applications until I got what I could do with it. I had to dump OneNote in favour of these two apps but strictly used it for writing and storing notes, and things important to me. I used the Calendar app for my tasks and the Reminders app for my todo lists. Though, I still had issues being productive with them because of my difficulty in using it effectively. Suddenly, I paused the use for a while and looked somewhere else for greener pastures.

I went back online for another solution then discovered ClickUp. I was filled with joy saying “I have found what works for me”. I found it very useful and interesting in managing projects and tasks but not for my daily activities and life. I oftentimes miss notifications/reminders on dates of commencement and deadlines when I’m offline. Though, this wasn’t an issue since I’m always connected to the internet. For my daily activities, I was partially satisfied because I wanted something very simple, basic and straightforward. I didn’t want the complexity of navigating through.

Finally, in September last year, Apple released iOS 13 with major updates and a revamp to the Reminders app. I saw some lovely designs and ideas I loved so I switched back. I resumed the Calendar app too since they go hand-in-hand for me. After intense usage for a while, I started having the feeling (the sense of being productive) I’ve always hungered for and since then till now, it has been very sweet, easy and simple for me to manage all my activities and even my projects. How it worked, I don’t wanna know. All I know is, it is working for me.

I still use ClickUp but strictly for project management.

Today, I am happy and fulfilled in my heart being able to manage my life, and my time and stay productive. It can only get better with consistency.

P.S. Use what works for you. It is not a must you use Reminders and Calendar to manage your time. Sticky Notes could be your thing if you like things done traditionally. The most important thing is to be productive.

I believe I’ve impacted something into you from my story.

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Software Engineer 👨🏿‍💻 and Developer Advocate