How to Define and Use Everdo Areas Effectively- Everdo

Dec. 15, 2020

When following Getting Things Done, you will eventually have hundreds of actions and dozens of projects. It is often the case that these items can be split into groups in such a way that each group can be worked on separately. This approach can reduce the number of simultaneous projects and actions that you need to deal with. This in turn makes your GTD system better organized and easier to use.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Reading your article made me realize I’m using too many area tags. I’m using these as Areas of responsibility - but the truth is I keep ‘All areas’ selected for majority of the time.

I have to say, I like these articles you have started to post lately, very insightful!

I had done the same thing (made them as areas of focus) and just always used “All Areas” - so thank you for the blog post :+1:

But… If I understand your reasoning here, why shouldn’t “Areas” in Everdo just be named “Contexts” which seems to be what they are in the GTD terminology?

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I like that idea, this also would enable us to quickly change the context with the keyboard short cuts.

If you think context == area, you can simply put @ into your areas to get both types of behavior with the same tag. I do this for most areas.

I view contexts as more granular in general. However in many cases it makes sense to have a context equal to an area.

I use areas as areas of focus… It’s the best implementation for me. Just using to filter actions and projects during the weekly review to be sure that i’m aligned on my purposes for every area of my life.

Hi, long time toodledo user here 13Y, looking to switch to something else since that is all but dead
I can see areas equivalent to folders, having a bit of difficulty managing/switching on free account on android, but can on mac (besides the point).
If I had areas called home and acquire (things I buy or need to get somehow) and I have a project in area home.
That project is called “range hood project” and it has a number of sub tasks. Can any of the sub tasks be in different areas? example I need to buy some tape, screws and a saw (3 discreet tasks) and they are of area (folder) = acquire.
If that is possible, will I also be able to view them (and all the sub tasks of range hood project), when filtered by area = home?
I’m also aware of tags and contexts (places, home, car, office, doctor, internet , supermarket etc)

Tasks inside a project inherit the areas you assign to the project itself.
You have different options:

1- Give ‘Range hood project’ the area acquire.
All subtasks inside this project will automatically get the acquire area. If you want to use a ‘home’ area for one of the subtasks only, you can - but that subtask will then have both areas assigned to it and show up in both area views.
The project itself and rest of the tasks will only show under acquire.

2- Have no area assigned to the project
In this case you can assign the area you want to the subtasks and they won’t inherit one from the project. Subtasks will show under their area only. Project won’t show under any area.

3- Give the project both the acquire and home areas. All subtasks will inherit and show under both areas.

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Hello, everyone.
I am not sure I understand why the Areas in Everdo shouldn’t be the Areas of Responsibility / Focus in GTD.
Would it be possible to clarify? Is it because if they were the same concept, there is a risk that a user would end up having too many Area tags?

Areas must correspond to well-defined and independent environments, contexts

From what I read, some people are using the Everdo Areas to represent contexts, and this seems wrong to me, because it’s mixing up two different concepts.

Everdo provides a good way to filter down items based on the context on the left-side menu.
Therefore, one can set the context (“where am I?”) in the left hand-side bar and iterate through his multiple Areas of Responsibility through the global Area filter.
Like @Jordi, I have been using the Everdo Areas as Areas of Responsibility / Focus, covering all areas of my life, and it feels right.

For me they are my areas of focus/responsibilities. This is how I used them in Nirvana and how I am using them now in Everdo.

They could be your areas of responsibility, if that makes sense in your particular system. It’s just that the behavior of areas in Everdo makes them more useful for some things and less for the others.

For example, I most often would like to combine several Areas of Responsibility into a single Next Actions list. This doesn’t work if each Everdo area corresponds to just one Area of Responsibility. This is only my particular approach, but I treat the list of Areas of Focus merely as a review tool and it has no bearing on the “tactical” part of my GTD workflow.