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Unsure how to transform a bunch of email into one task/one reminder?

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  • Unsure how to transform a bunch of email into one task/one reminder?

    Hey everyone,

    first of all, maybe this problem has been answered on this forum, but I couldnt find it. Sorry for spamming if there is a similar thread to this one.

    I have a question regarding the GTD plugin for Outlook 2007. Just installed it yesterday, and, having watched all the tutorials, Im still not sure how to handle this situation:

    I have, say, 10 emails regarding the same project. I want to process them as a single deferred task, say, answer them one by one starting tomorrow at a specific time. I assigned those emails to a project, and I got 10 separate tasks and ten reminders. Just want to merge them into one commitment. You know how that feels to have too much items on your to-do list.

    Can some give me a hint how do I handle this situation?

    Thanks in advance for your time.

    Also, big hi and hey to everyone, as this is my first post here.
    Cheers,
    thomas
    Last edited by thomas b; 09-11-2009, 04:39 AM. Reason: typos

  • #2
    Are you writing one reply to all ten emails, ot ten repies to ten emails?

    In the first case, it's one action, in the second it's 10 actions. If you got interrupted after the first 6 replies, what would your next action be?

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by CoffinDodger View Post
      Are you writing one reply to all ten emails, ot ten repies to ten emails?

      In the first case, it's one action, in the second it's 10 actions. If you got interrupted after the first 6 replies, what would your next action be?
      Hi,
      i want to send 10 replies to to 10 emails, one by one. Since they belong to same project, i want to do this one by one.
      If I get interrupted after 6 replies, I want to get back to #7,8,9 and 10 ASAP.


      I was thinking of creating one task called,say, "reply to 10 emails concerning project A" that would be related to all 10 emails.
      Last edited by thomas b; 09-11-2009, 06:31 AM.

      Comment


      • #4
        I think the problem for me would be when I came to look at my context lists to decide which action to do next. By the time you get there, ideally you should have done all the thinking so you can see all your possible next actions and make a contextual priority decision as to what to do next.

        If you have "reply to 10 emails" as a solitary item and you're comparing this to the other items, what happens when one of those emails is more important than the others? (to your boss for example). Well, you're going to have to go to a sub-list to check the possible priorities.

        Pretty soon I would build up a resistance to that - I'm having to do more thinking than I want to be at that point. I want to be in the mental state that I'm "cranking widgets". You only need to keep the Next Action (singular) for a project. So it's "Write email reply to Bob about Project". When you've done that you can carry on with the project (email Fred, Jim etc) without creating the next action first. When you get interrupted, quickly put in the Next action as "Finish draft email to Kate" and then tackle the interruption. That's what I meant by having separate items - the next action is not "send 10 emails", it's most often going to be "send 1 email".

        I'm not an Outlook add-on user, I use Outlook "manually" which I'm guessing is a bit more work, and I would still go for the approach of having the individual items. I've sent >4000 emails from Outlook so far this year (on track for 6000 for 12 months!) So it does scale. The key point is to get the system to the point where you can "crank widgets" rather than think.

        Comment


        • #5
          come to think of it, you are right. Guess what. Processing those 10 emails one by one I discovered some that need nto to be replied at all, and some that required more actions than just sending a reply, so they belong to projects.

          Got to continue redaing David Allen's book, no shortcuts

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