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3 Great Goal Setting Apps: Google Calendar Alternatives

Each New Year’s Eve do you find yourself using some of the same goals as the previous year because you should have done them then?

And let’s be honest here, are the previous year’s goals actually what you should have accomplished two years ago but didn’t?

Too often our goals are more ill-fated wishes rather than promises we keep. Discipline could bridge the gap, but there are always other things to distract us and that seem to take up too much of our time.

Google Calendar Goals is an example of just such an app that can help you to identify where there actually is time in your day, and it has received a lot of attention, but it isn’t the only one.

Related: Must-Try Business Goal Tracker Apps for Mobile

There are many apps and settings that can help you achieve your personal goals and allow you to become the person you have always wanted to be. Of course, this still means that you will have to make the effort to actually accomplish these things. But an app can assist and automate certain aspects of goalkeeping to make it more likely—as long as you are willing to follow through.

1. Nozbe

Time: 15-25 Minutes

Nozbe isn’t solely devoted to goal-tracking, but is actually a bona fide task management system. It can be used to track and plan any task. Nozbe 3.1 is robust and comes with lots of features, including: the ability to pin comments to your goals in order of importance, clone your goals or tasks, and share on social media. You can add or remove projects and tasks, set category icons and colors, and email tasks or goals.

1. Install Nozbe

Download and install the Nozbe app. There are options for both mobile and desktop apps. The mobile app is available from Google Play.

Nozbe Mobile

Nozbe Desktop


2. Launch Nozbe

Open the app. You will have to agree to terms and conditions and register.


3. Create a Goal/Project (In Mobile Mode) & 

Create a Goal/Project (In Desktop Mode)

(3.A) Create a Goal/Project (In Mobile Mode)

  • Select the Projects tab on the menu to your upper left.
  • Click the + icon toward the bottom of your screen.
  • Enter the goal/project name and press Enter.
  • Repeat as necessary.
  • You can also create a project from existing tasks or add tasks to any project.

(3.B) Create a Goal/Project (In Desktop Mode)     

  • Click on Go, then Projects.
  • Choose File, then New Project.
  • Type the goal/project name.
  • Repeat as necessary.
  • You can also create a project from existing tasks or add tasks to any project.

4. Edit Attributes

  • Access the Infobar. In the mobile app it is always to the left or you can tap on the i In the desktop app, click on List, then Show Settings.
  • Select Project Description and specify the details of your goal.
  • Designate each project as a goal with a label.
  • Choose the colors of your goals by selecting Change Project Color.
  • Filter the tasks within your goals with the aptly named Filter
  • Edit Mode allows you to select any or all projects to be edited via the Edit
  • Delete selected projects/goals by dragging them to the Trash bin.
  • Classify a goal as achieved by clicking Complete.

5. Add Attachments

  • In the mobile app, tap on the paperclip icon at the top of the Infobar.
  • Arrive at the same place in the desktop app by going to List, then Show Attachments.
  • Select the plus icon to add the attachment.
  • Although there are a variety of attachments, one recommendation is to choose Note, then add a name. Here’s where you can list what helps inspire you to achieve this goal. If you are ever feeling unmotivated, remind yourself why you want to accomplish this goal.

6. Break Down Tasks

  • Tasks can be added through the Inbox in the mobile app or by choosing List, then New Task from the main menu of the desktop app.
  • You can assign a task to one or multiple categories.
  • You can also specify the time necessary for completion and/or a due date.
  • Tasks will be sent to the top of the list by default. To send it to the bottom, click the icon with the downward-pointing arrow.

7. Keep Tabs

  • You can track and remember your goals by selecting the label icon and choosing Goals if you have other projects.
  • Clean your Inbox of any tasks daily or weekly by completing the tasks or moving them to a goal or another project.
  • Prioritize tasks you need to start working on right now by starring the task, or adding a # or #priority after the task name. If a task is due or overdue it will become prioritized automatically.
  • Add tasks as needed.
  • Comment on tasks if necessary, especially if you are working on these with other people.


Time: 10-20 Minutes

IFTTT is great for automation of tasks. It can also help bring all of your disparate apps and web services together, and make them communicate and play nice. IFTTT can be used with apps like Trello or products like Fitbit to schedule recurring tasks or reach your fitness goals. Want to educate yourself about how to stay healthy or learn about new laws? You can receive these articles automatically through IFTTT.

1. Install IF

IF is based on If/Then and DO statements. If you have ever done any coding, these will probably seem familiar to you.

2. Open the App

3. Create Recipes

Recipes are the link between apps and devices or other apps. There are two kinds:

  • If recipes run in the background, and rely on this conditional statement: If this, then that. Here are some examples from users—If (recurring task), then (schedule to Trello). Keep forgetting to pay rent? If (day of the month rent is due), then (text reminder)
  • Do recipes are simply a command and are initiated by a tap. For instance, Add (goal) to Google spreadsheet, or Create OneNote page.

More goalkeeping recipe ideas from users:

3. Week Plan

Time: 15-30 Minutes

This may be a good option for you if you don’t mind the interface of Google Calendar, because it is similar and can also be used in conjunction with the app. Week Plan is based on the premise that we are constantly being presented new things to do, read, and remember that it can be overwhelming to try to tackle it all.

This app helps you prioritize your goals and break them down into manageable quantities, tasks, and timeframes. The app doesn’t neglect the big picture, but it does help you review all aspects and rate their importance.

1. Install App

Week Plan for Android

Week Plan for Chrome


2. Launch App

You will need to sign in with Google or create an account.


3. Read Message

You will receive a welcome message from Week Plan’s founder. It’s worth noting that you will start out with the full-featured Ultimate Plan, but unless you purchase the app you will be downgraded to the Free Plan in about 14 days.

4. Set Goals

What do you want to work toward? Tap the + icon to the right of Set My Roles and Goals of the Week.


5. Edit Tasks for Today

  • There’s no time to get started like today. Tap on the pen icon and enter your goal.
  • Enter notes as necessary and tap or OK or exit.

6. Add Roles and Goals

  • The Self role is set up for you automatically, and when you click within the text box you will see a button where you can add a goal.
  • If you want to add more of the roles you play in life (mother, friend, etc.) select Add Role.

7. Check Out Parking Lot

Scroll down further and you will see a section called Parking Lot. This is where you can jot down gift ideas or other important thoughts.

8. Peruse Menu Options

Click on the three horizontal lines in the upper left-hand corner. Here you will find Extensions, Account Settings, Referrals, Feedback, Video Tutorials, and more.

9. Edit Attributes

  • Filter tasks by tapping on the Filter icon in the top right corner.
  • Delete tasks by first selecting the task then tapping on the Trash icon.
  • View Productivity Analytics by tapping on the right-facing arrow next to Just Me.
  • Access a Vision Tracker, Growth Journal, Outliner, and more by selecting Extensions from the menu.

10. Add Items

Add checklists, attach files, or add comments to your tasks or goals.

11. Manage Tasks

  • Change the date of a task by dragging and dropping it or editing the date in the Edit Task
  • Use the Pomodoro Timer extension to start a timer and see the time you are spending completing the task automatically update.

12. Keep Tabs

  • To set a task as urgent, just end the title with an exclamation mark.
  • Personalize the sorting format or number of lists by visiting Account Settings in the main menu.
  • While you’re there, make sure Week Plan is going to send you coaching emails.
  • Use the Analytics section in the main menu to see the Time Tracked Vs Estimated, Parking Lot Creep, and other useful metrics.


We all need goals. Without them, our lives lack direction. But we also need a plan, motivation, and accountability. Sometimes goals can be too vague or unrealistic. These apps can really cause you to evaluate your goals and make them more attainable.

The IFTTT app can help you to take action—but easily through automation. You can also set reminders in all of the apps, but ultimately it is you who has to follow through. If you are having trouble, also keep in mind the reasons you set that goal in the first place.

Tell us about your meeting your goals in the comments below.

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