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  • Still not implemented

    Accd to the log I haven't been here in 5 MONTHS!! 5 months ago I learned about GTD and really thought I was going to do it. I've played with it off and on, but I never committed to capturing everything through it, so it never became my go-to system.

    I believe the principles will work, and I can only imagine I am holding back based on committing to the startup time and settling on tools for implementation. I am quite in love with my Design Your Own FC planner....my "events" are stored year to year and are automatically printed onto the correct dates. I have never been a person who is entirely digital since I really love the feel of writing things down and the concreteness of paper, however I like the convenience of digital esp in recording repetitive tasks.

    I am getting by with my "system" since I have a good memory and I write down the really important things. Not a lot falls through the cracks, but I am not as efficient as I'd like and I end up getting things done because I am fire-fighting more than doing advanced planning. This week has been a nightmare and I am going to start GTD asap!! I am determined!! I have the tickler file set up (set it up 5 months ago for all the good it did me hahahha), I have a hard calendar that I love, but using a sheet of paper each for projects doesn't seem to be working for me. I like everything planned out on paper, but it doesnt seem to be a good place to list "next actions" for me.

    I have considered a hipster PDA or some type of recording device as a take along device for capturing on the run (I usually use FC organizer at home--I also run a business out of my house). I have considered firing up my pocketPC again and downloading software--considering "my life organized" since it appears we could use it both with my pocket pc and hubby's palm.

    What I don't want to do is get bogged down in learning a system as well as breaking bad habits and implementing GTD, however I think never choosing a system is why I've never really committed to GTD. I unfortunately am one of those ppl who LOVES trying out "new systems", buying office supplies, making the hipster PDA (though I would make the circa one that I read about), but I never even learn to fully implement that one before I am off to a different idea. Other than just biting the bullet and DOING it, is there anything that you'd suggest to get a newbie over the initial hump?

    Thanks so much!

  • #2
    Dear Aspen,

    As a Geek I love to play implement, try, change... all those things...

    My advice will be START WITH PAPER, this is the reson... IT IS NOT THE TOOL IT IS THE SYSTEM, it is easier to understand the system when it is paper based and then automated or make it electronic that play with something and then try to understand the system.

    My first 6 months of GTD I change my system every week... (thats how I got the weekly review) took me that long to understand that I was working in the TOOL not in the SYSTEM. At that time I decided to keep the same system for a Month... Since then there have been TOOL improvements, TOOL changes, TOOL improvisations, but I have a SOLID SYSTEM...

    I wish you the best of lucks getting a SYSTEM...

    Comment


    • #3
      start simple

      my advice is to start simple,
      1) start to make dayly to do list
      2) when that works make a project list
      3) when that works make a action list for each project
      4) then make the next action list and group them according to @job @home etc.

      Comment


      • #4
        lots to think about...

        Hi Aspen. I'm sorry you're having trouble. You mention a number of areas, including tools, projects, and actions. The system can defintely be a challenge to adopt. If you're a "serial system adopter" it may be worthwhile looking at what you get out of each new system, what your needs are, and whether it's worth it for you to "settle down" with one.

        I think your insight is right on: Adopting the full system has real mental benefits, and can open you up for more energy, creativity, and satisfaction in life. So I personally recommend giving it a full try. If you can't work through the book by yourself (it has a very practical step-by-step guide), then maybe get a buddy to do it with you, or hire someone to help coach you.

        Also, this forum is full of smart, experienced, and helpful people who can give plenty of advice. If you provide a little more detail about what you've tried, what doesn't work, etc. we may be able to help...

        Comment


        • #5
          Ok, I'll try to describe...

          If any of you have read Julie Morganstern's book on Time Management, I am very much a Conquistador of Chaos. I pack my schedule so full even I am amazed and then I hit the ground running. Her theory is when you are good at crisis management you enjoy creating a crisis environment around yourself. I am also a perfectionist of a sort, so I can hold myself up (now for 5 months!) in fully implementing a helpful system because I don't know the "perfect" way to do it. Yet apparantly not enough of a perfectionist to say "this is the best system I can find thus far so I'll commit to it." I researched the living crap out of GTD to make sure it would work for me (learning about how everyone sets up their systems to canibalize the best ideas ad nauseum), and now I know I "should" be using it, but I'm not and that just frustrates me.

          In addition to research, I spent a lot of time in communication with hubby on the system and whether we were both going to do it. I set up basic contexts and inboxes. Because we decided not to put money into something until we knew it worked, hubby went with 3x5 cards, which he actually is still using, and I downloaded DIY pages to add to my FC organizer. (He also downloaded a trial of Life Balance, but it was a busy time and he never learned the features so we couldn't justify the expense). The most helpful thing we've done is the inboxes, but our weekly review is a joke. We've been overseas for the last month and now we're in an intensive career-related school, so to be fair we could hardly be doing it this minute, but we'd mostly dropped it long before that. At review time we just got together and did our usual weekly discussion of the upcoming week. The main difference is that we each took on more specific tasks, and I could keep up with what I was doing and what I was "waiting for". However, often at the next weekly discussion what was supposed to get done had not gotten done--sometimes there were good reasons for this and sometimes not, but it all made me angry equally because we were failing at the "system".

          We've spent a lot of time goal setting and big picture planning together both our business and our life. We both know where we are headed, we just aren't good at how to get there. I've set up a projects tab in my organizer and listed only the most pressing projects because I was convinced gradual implementation was the only way for us to go. I look at my projects tab but not as often as I should, and I'm doing things on these projects, but not with any GTD bookmarking and next actions in concrete form at least.

          Because of the intensity of all the extra events packed into our already busy lives, all the problems with our current way to doing things have been magnified. We both really saw it this week, and we're discussing committing (really this time) to trying GTD. I want to do the entire brain dump, and I want to keep working it for at least a month and then review if it helped. This weekend I can do some, but I have at least 5 hours of prep time for class starting Monday and so does hubby in addition to some maintenence that has gotten behind. I can't give GTD my full attn. Everything is new again Sept 1, so I thought I would use the last 4 days of August to organize myself. Events out of my control have already stolen 2 of those days, so basically I have Wed-Thurs.

          I'm open to...and indeed welcome...suggestions!

          Comment


          • #6
            If you want serious results treat GTD seriously.

            Originally posted by Aspen
            ... our weekly review is a joke. We've been overseas for the last month and now we're in an intensive career-related school, so to be fair we could hardly be doing it this minute, but we'd mostly dropped it long before that. At review time we just got together and did our usual weekly discussion of the upcoming week. The main difference is that we each took on more specific tasks, and I could keep up with what I was doing and what I was "waiting for". However, often at the next weekly discussion what was supposed to get done had not gotten done--sometimes there were good reasons for this and sometimes not, but it all made me angry equally because we were failing at the "system".
            I do not think that the weekly review is a way to socialize. I think it is one-on-one with your projects, actions and commitments. Not a chit-chat with your friend.

            If you want serious results treat GTD seriously.

            If something was not done without a valid reason - you are not playing fair.

            Comment


            • #7
              Sheesh...

              I hope you're single if you think discussing the upcoming week with your mate is a socializing chat with a friend! I know what I was doing wrong...I only posted in because I was asked to clarify what we've done.

              Thanks for your imput.

              Comment


              • #8
                Dear Aspen,

                I can not tell you the best way, but can tell you what has work for me.

                I do my weekly review when I check Personal/Work, go trought project, ideas, and all that. I do that by myself and Usually happens Friday early afternoon. I took lunch in the office and get 1-2 hours working on that.

                Me and my Wife have an energy dinner thursday night (sometimes Saturdays for schedule conflicts) in that time we pull our agendas, dreams, projects, and create togherther for 1-3 hours in a restaurant...

                My advice will be have that conversation (that I think is key with your parthner) on a different time, that way you can focus on your system... Remember that your system and your parthner system are two different things, you only have a life together, you share projects, ideas, dreams... but if you both are responsible for everything ussually no body is, so get your own system and enjoy the time you can talk and dream, but do your weekly review alone.

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