Today, we’ll take a closer look at Asana, a tool you can use to manage your time and learning goals effectively. Learning to code online can be a bridge to a new career and life-changing skills, but like anything worth learning, it takes time and discipline. A considerable difference between learning in-person and online learning is that you are free to create your own schedule. With this comes the responsibility of deciding how much time you will dedicate to accomplishing your goal. It can be challenging to visualize the steps it will take, and you’re already pouring enough information into your brain.
Asana allows you to build projects that represent your goals. Projects can be broken down into specific sections that group related tasks. In each section, tasks represent individual steps that must be completed to accomplish a goal.
For this example, let’s consider the Treehouse Techdegree. If you were to take the Treehouse Techdegree and make it an Asana project, each unit could be a section. Each course, workshop, or instruction step would be a task in that section.
To build a timeline, you can assign due dates to each task then switch over to the calendar view. Once you’ve completed a task, you can mark it as complete—and get a fun little surprise from the app.
Getting Started with Asana
Asana has a simple and straightforward onboarding experience and excellent tutorials to demonstrate all the features they have. Here a few to start with. You’ll even create a sample project as part of creating an account.
Tips for using Asana
Here are a few things I’ve seen students do to stay on top of their progress:
Sticking to the smaller week-to-week due dates will help you stick to your overall timeline. When planning your projects, decide on times that are realistic to you based on your current schedule.
If possible, try learning with a friend or in a group. You can share projects with your peers to hold each other accountable and support each other.
Make time for yourself
Schedule time for breaks and make sure not to burn out while learning. While extended time away can make it difficult to remember concepts, breaks from coding often allow you to take time for self-care and approach problems with a fresh perspective.
Break down your L.O.G.s
Thinking about a large project or goal can be intimidating. Imagine a termite tasked with eating an entire log. This could be a large, overwhelming goal. If we had a tool like a woodchipper that could break that log down into tiny pieces, the termite could set small achievable goals like eating a chip a day.
Much like a woodchipper breaks down a log, projects can turn Large Overwhelming Goals, or L.O.G.s, into smaller, more digestible goals.
When we break big goals down, we can see a clear starting point and the small steps along the way to reach our goal.
Make large goals, like completing a Treehouse Techdegree, into an Asana project, and mark off courses as you go to track your progress. Not only does it help you stay on track, but you can also look back periodically on how much you’ve accomplished.