Using tags in Things

Thomas Schoffelen
3 min readJul 20, 2021

Tags in the task manager app Things seem very minimal and simplistic at first sight because of the minimalist UI, but there are a lot of handy ways to apply them to better manage your tasks and schedule your days.

Here are some of the ways in which I apply them to my personal to-do list.

Time Estimations

One of my main uses for tags is to set time estimations for tasks. I do this by having tags like 10min, 20min, 30min, etc.

These tags all have corresponding shortcuts set, so that I can simply mark a task as a 10-minute task by pressing Ctrl + 1.

Grouping them together under a tag called Time makes it easy to filter based on task duration in views like Today and Upcoming.

Adding time estimates is also a great way to see if any tasks need to be split up more to be actionable. If I estimate a task to take an hour or longer, I usually tend to try to split it up into individual tasks to make sure I’ll actually get to it.


I also tend to have tags for names of the people I work with often, so that I can search by name (simply start typing anywhere…



Thomas Schoffelen

Entrepreneur tech kid, co-founder of NearSt, Londoner, open source enthusiast and aspiring spare time literature geek.