Roam: How to Create a Master Task List

Since I discovered Roam - my new favourite note-taking app - I’ve been trying to move everything I have in other apps like Notion and Evernote to it. That includes; my journal, highlights from books and articles, blog/Youtube ideas, schedule etc.

Last week, I managed to move my todo lists to Roam from Todoist. And it’s working surprisingly well. It looks like this.

Yes, I know it doesn’t look particularly great. It’s just a list.

But what matters, at least for me, is simplicity and having basic functions of todo lists. And I don’t like having multiple apps/platforms for organising different aspects of my life. I just want one place where I can go and find everything I need in my life.

Having multiple platforms eats up your willpower and mental resources. Whenever you need to do something (e.g. write a note, make a todo list, plan your week), first you have to make a decision which platform you will use. Making decisions costs your willpower. This also implies you can save it by reducing the number of decisions you have to make, which is why Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg wear the same cloth every single day. So, managing everything in one app helps me save my willpower so that I can spend it on what actually matters.

Anyways, to make a master task list,  you need to create a page called Tasks (or whatever you want to call it).

The second step is to create categories, namely inbox, today, tomorrow, next week, and someday. This depends on your preference. You can add as many categories as you like, such as next month or next year.

The third step is to dump every task you have in your mind in the Inbox:

You can make these bullet points into checkboxes if you highlight, right-click and select Make TODOs:

Finally, you can simply drag and drop each task to the right date:

The fourth step is to assign tags to each task. You can tag tasks according to their importance or urgency. For instance, I put #p1 for the most important tasks, #p2 for the second important tasks:

Another thing I do is assigning tags according to the category of each task (e.g. work, house, studying etc.):

Why is tagging important? Because Roam lets you filter tasks based on their tags:

This feature lets you see, for example, the only tasks that are super important (#p1), or the only tasks that are related to work (#work).

Finally, what I usually do is go back to my Daily Notes and shift-click the Task page:

This will open the Task page in the sidebar, and you can see your task list all the time.


Having a master task list is very helpful. It lets you see every task you have on your plate. While it’s up to your preference whether to use dedicated apps like Things, Todoist and Omnifocus, I love having everything under one roof. If you’re like me, moving todo lists from your dedicated apps to Roam is not such a bad idea.

If you want to see more Roam tutorials, check out my Youtube channel :)


Related Posts