Fantastical’s templates allow you to quickly add items to your calendar that you find yourself making frequently. At first glance templates appear similar to repeating events, but they serve quite a distinct function.
If you’re not familiar with templates, you can find a quick overview of how to set one up in our tutorial video.
So why use templates at all? Templates are especially useful for quickly creating common events that do not fit into a regular repeating pattern. Furthermore, templates allow you to save time when scheduling by having instant access to frequently used items.
Templates are a key to efficient planning as they let you spend less time thinking about creating an event. Instead, you simply select the event from a pre-existing list and insert it directly into your calendar.
With this in mind, let’s consider a few ways to get started with templates.
Make templates for your personal goals, projects and chores
Did you make a New Year’s resolution to introduce a new habit to your life? You’re much more likely to keep your habit if you schedule time in your calendar for it. Of course, life can be demanding ever-changing, so perhaps rigidly scheduling a workout session at the same time each week doesn’t work for you? In this case, consider creating an all-day event template for your workout sessions, and then at the beginning of the day or week open your calendar and slot your workout in whenever you notice you have free time.
Personal projects are also something that templates can assist with too. As a helpful article from Adobe’s 99u explains, breaking a project down into smaller, achievable periods of time makes them much more manageable to accomplish. Templates can help here by giving you quick access to a collection of regular events related to your project. For example, if you’re wanting to write a novel, setting up templates for ‘Planning’, ‘Writing’ and ‘Editing’ periods will allow you to quickly slot these sessions into your schedule without having to type them out and assign them to a calendar each time.
Templates can also help with the more mundane aspects of life. Try making a template for your online shopping’s delivery slot, which you can use as soon as your delivery driver confirms the time your delivery will arrive.
Templates for work
Templates are ideal for your working life too! If you have frequent but irregular meetings, then make all-day templates for these meetings and add them to your calendar when it becomes apparent when they can slot in to your weekly schedule.
LifeDev often extols the virtues of quarterly planing, and templates are ideally suited to fit into this sort of planning structure: make a number of templates for regular items you know you have to complete each quarter, and then the next time you open Fantastical to plan out your quarter your events are ready and waiting for you!
There’s also a specific group of people to whom templates will be particularly helpful – shift workers. If you fall into this group, then you know that an identical weekly or monthly schedule is not something that works for you. In this case, add your shifts to Fantastical as templates, and then when you receive your rota it’s quick and easy to enter your work hours into your calendar by picking the shifts you added as templates.
Templates and tasks
Until now, we’ve been discussing templates in the context of calendar events, but did you know that you can also use templates to create tasks too?
Do you do the laundry regularly, yet not at the same time each week? Make a template for it and the task is ready to go as soon as you decide it needs to be done.
Or perhaps you have a larger project that is more helpful to track using tasks than events? The same tips mentioned above for planning projects with templates can be applied to tasks as well.
Why not browse through your task lists and consider which tasks you find yourself frequently recreating? These will be ideal candidates to add as templates.
Templates retain event details
One final piece of useful information to keep in mind is that templates retain the details of your items.
If you like to use a specific pattern of alerts to remind you of important business calls then templates will retain these.
Perhaps you schedule a meeting with the same invitees each month? Yes, templates will save your invitees too, saving you from adding each invitee individually!
Do you always need to see travel time for a certain event? Simply add this event as a template and the location and travel time is saved and ready to go as soon as you need to schedule it.
Hopefully this post has given you some inspiration for how you can take advantage of templates and use them in your calendaring.
Templates are but one of the many powerful features of Fantastical Premium. View more about Fantastical Premium or take out a trial subscription here. You can also read more about templates, and Fantastical’s other features, in the help books found on our support page.
We look forward to hearing how you’ll incorporate templates into your workflow. Perhaps drop us a Tweet and let us know if you find any creative ways to employ them in your life?
Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for more tricks and tips on how to use Fantastical’s extensive feature set in the coming weeks.