In case you’re having a trouble committing to a single goal, there are more than a few applications ready to jump in as a help. Some of those are pretty basic to-do apps, which allow you to organize your day completely manually, so it’s up to you to fulfill all your goals. On the other hand, there are some a bit more advanced applications which are being published as part of a larger philosophy which is created to help you achieve your goals. For example, you can use so-called Pomodoro technique, which is made to help you finish a task by dividing it into timed periods which allow you to really focus on working towards the goal. This and many similar techniques really work for some, but there are also those who don’t really believe in this kind of forced organization.
Well, for those who do believe that there are numerous techniques which can help you achieve a goal, we’re going to review a very interesting OSX application called Vitamin-R 2 ($20). This is a well-known application which has been around for several years, which only proves that many users were happy with it. We are going to review its second version, which is actually not that different from the original Vitamin-R and mostly brings some interface changes.
First, a few words on how Vitamin-R 2 actually works. This is an application which promotes working in short time slices, which can improve productivity and make you more focused on a goal. In this manner, it’s somewhat similar to Pomodoro technique, but Vitamin-R 2 allows you to set-up your own time slices and time breakes between those periods of intensive work.
In order to start working with Vitamin-R 2 you’ll need to click on its menu bar icon, and you’ll be greeted with a welcome screen. Once you click on “Next” you’ll get a new window where you’ll need to define your goal, and then you’ll need to define the objective for the first time slice. The good news is that Vitamin-R 2 works well with applications like Things, OmniFocus, and The Hit List, where you can simply drag-and-drop already created tasks. Once you’ve completed them, Vitamin-R 2 will mark them as checked in the referenced application.
After you’ve set your goals, and the goals of each time slice, you’ll need to set-up the length of time slices and breakes between them. Also, you can eliminate distractions, which means that Vitamin-R 2 will automatically hide or quit any application you add to a list. After everything is set-up, you can start working.
While you work on your goal, Vitamin-R 2 will show numerous pop-ups and notifications to show your progress and how much time you’ve got left. At the end, you will be able to grade yourself and see your progress through time.
Even though Vitamin-R is a very interesting application, I still need to mention some of my concerns. First of all, it comes with a very intrusive interface which stands out from the OSX environment. In some ways, I could even call it ugly and poorly designed. It also overwhelms you with loads of information, options, and adjustments. At the end, if someone has a procrastination problem, I don’t see how helpful it can be to spend 5-10 minutes each time, simply to set-up Vitamin-R for a task.