Forum

  • If you are new to these Forums, please take a moment to register using the fields above.

Announcement

Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.

New context in my system?

Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse
X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • New context in my system?

    I created a very rare list for me - @Office. The first action appeared on my list: "Find a business card of mr. XXX at my office drawer". Now I need to look at this context while in the office. Not sure I will do.

    I don't have so called discrete or spare time because my time is usually blocked with meetings. So I have predefined times when I look into specific contexts. For example, @Mac context is done first thing in the morning during a blocked hour, @Call context is done during commute time, @Waitng is reviewed on Fridays during blocked WR time. And @Office is not predefined.

    Any ideas of how to introduce the context into my system?

  • #2
    Use Weekly Review

    If you are rarely @Office then it seems a little much to create a Predefined context around it.

    If it is important to you to find the business card then maybe empty the drawer into your inbox and review the inbox during WR. Then the next action could be "Empty office drawer into inbox" and Create project "Find Business Card...". Not only will you have an empty drawer, you also don't have to create a @Office that you will have to review weekly.

    Life is good

    Comment


    • #3
      Predefined times...

      ...can be useful, but not as a failsafe for your system. The idea of the context lists is that they are more "ad hoc" than a calendar; they are ways to capture what can be done when possible.

      There should be at least little blocks of time (10,15 minutes?) in your days where you can glance at your lists...? This sort of list review is, I've found, just a habit that needs to be developed.

      If the business card is something you need right away, I'd put the reminder on your calendar. Otherwise, if it's just "whenever I can get to it," an @Office list is appropriate. You must have at least SOME time to review your context lists?

      I don't know how in control of the meeting culture you are at your place of work, but if it's true that you are literally back-to-back [I]every[I] day, that will definitely hamper your ability to do anything, and having to schedule the rest of your time around these meetings rather defeats the purpose of discretionary time???

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by CJSullivan View Post
        ...can be useful, but not as a failsafe for your system. The idea of the context lists is that they are more "ad hoc" than a calendar; they are ways to capture what can be done when possible.

        There should be at least little blocks of time (10,15 minutes?) in your days where you can glance at your lists...? This sort of list review is, I've found, just a habit that needs to be developed.

        If the business card is something you need right away, I'd put the reminder on your calendar. Otherwise, if it's just "whenever I can get to it," an @Office list is appropriate. You must have at least SOME time to review your context lists?

        I don't know how in control of the meeting culture you are at your place of work, but if it's true that you are literally back-to-back [I]every[I] day, that will definitely hamper your ability to do anything, and having to schedule the rest of your time around these meetings rather defeats the purpose of discretionary time???
        I'm really booked 100% but like your idea of leaving at least some discretionary time. What is recommended time to be left unblocked between the meetings? By the way when alone my co-owners jump into my office and use that time to discuss business plans or just chat

        Comment


        • #5
          Some ideas; ignore any you don't find useful.

          If you only have a few rare things in @office, and if they're
          quick to do (as I imagine looking for that business card probably is),
          then I would take something you normally do in your office
          and attach it to that: do you put on/take off a hat or other
          outdoor wear? Put your lunch momentarily on your desk?
          Pick up your briefcase? Check your phone for messages?

          You can: -- Put a piece of paper inside your hat to remind you.

          -- Attach a piece of paper to the handle of your briefcase.

          -- Put a note inside your lunch, or attached to the outside.

          -- Phone yourself and leave yourself a voicemail reminding
          yourself to look for that business card.

          The idea is: to somehow get you to think of it when you're
          in your office. If it's something quick you can just quickly do
          it just before leaving for a meeting or leaving for home or
          just after walking into your office. If it's rare, you only need
          the reminder when there is actually something to do.

          Other ideas:

          -- Once a week, e.g. Fridays, instead of 1 hour @Mac, do 50 minutes
          @Mac and then 10 minutes of @Office; or,

          -- once a week or once
          a day look at @office and maybe do those things first at the
          beginning of your @Mac time, so if it only takes 1 minute to
          find that business card you still have 59 minutes for @Mac, or

          -- Put @office tasks into your @mac context list, because
          you'll see them when you're able to do them (although you
          might also see them when doing @mac elsewhere; not
          perfect but maybe OK if the @office items are rare).

          -- Look at @office just before going home on Fridays

          -- Is it good to be 100% booked up? Can you find ways to
          reduce the numbers of some meetings or the lengths of the
          meetings?
          -- delegate some meetings to be handled by someone else
          -- delegate more projects and stuff to other people
          -- arrange the agendas for meetings so that you can attend
          only the part of the meeting which is about stuff you're
          more closely involved in and critically needed for the discussion
          -- tell meeting organizers you'll be leaving after the
          first 15 minutes of the meeting, so they can discuss
          stuff you're critically involved in first
          -- make sure meetings have specific agendas, so the
          discussion doesn't wander aimlessly. Know what the
          output of the meeting is supposed to look like
          (answers to certain questions, a plan of action, etc.)
          -- tell people (e.g. at the beginnings of meetings) that
          you'd like to make it fast
          -- schedule meetings to last for shorter times. Stuff not
          discussed will have to wait for the next week or whatever.
          People will tend to focus on the most important stuff.

          Hmm, maybe your co-workers need to be able to get hold
          of you. You could schedule some time (e.g. half an hour a day,
          or an hour a week)
          and be in your office at that time specifically for the purpose
          of letting co-workers spontaneously drop in and discuss stuff
          with you. That might be like a lot of mini-meetings that might
          be more focussed and quicker than formally scheduled meetings.
          You could tell your co-workers you're available at certain times;
          or you might prefer not to tell them and just be there.
          On your own calendar you could block it in like a meeting.

          Maybe some of that stuff can be discussed during a coffee break
          or lunch break.

          You might also schedule other time in your office when you
          put a "do not disturb" sign on the door; or just put that
          sign up whenever you feel like it, even if you're only
          in the office for a minute between meetings or something.
          If people knock on your door when the sign is up,
          refuse to talk to them at that time. You can call
          through the door "Sorry, I'm busy! Send me an email!"
          or something.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Fritz58 View Post
            I'm really booked 100% but like your idea of leaving at least some discretionary time. What is recommended time to be left unblocked between the meetings? By the way when alone my co-owners jump into my office and use that time to discuss business plans or just chat
            I think only you can tell what gives you a little sense of relief. It can be as little as 15 minutes just to breathe, re-group, glance at your lists, etc. If need be, a trip to the men's room may be in order, or a walk around the building. I think if you just started with that kind of break you'd find your mind beginning to naturally loosen up a little.

            It's a lot easier to say "I don't have time because everyone feels free to interrupt me" than it is to set boundaries with co-workers and friends. As long as you have the excuse that you're always interrupted, you don't have to be fully present to your lists or make the "tough" decisions on what to work on next. You can avoid the thinking if your day is basically prescribed for you by outside forces.

            ...but that could describe a prison, too...! To me, GTD is about being able to make one's own decisions about what one wants to "get done," and being able to work within and in spite of the constraints of one's current situation.

            Comment


            • #7
              Thanks! Good ideas!

              Comment


              • #8
                Meeting blockout

                I currently book appointments for myself in my calendar called 'meeting blockout'. I don't do this on a recurring basis, but as people start to book meetings I'll put in meeting blockouts around their meetings. Blockout maybe half an hour before their meeting allows you time to prepare for their meeting, or do other @office tasks if the prep didn't take too long.
                I would just book in a few half hour sessions during each week as it starts to get booked out, and use those for @office tasks.

                Comment


                • #9
                  In your case, if its truly a one off, I wouldnt create a context for it. Rather I'd just put a reminder in my calendar the next time i knew I was in the office. It may not be a typical thing to put in your calendar, but its less effort and more likely to succeed.

                  If you want to make yourself check a new context, try a day specific event each morning every day for a month saying "Check @Office context" til you get into the habit.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    seems impossible to have 100% of your time booked with meetings every single day.

                    are there not times when you are walking from your office to where the meeting is taking place? or from the meeting to a lunch room?

                    what about before everyone arrives at the meeting. meetings hardly every start on time, and even if they are back to back you will have 5-10 minutes somewhere. I can't imagine your first meeting finishing at 10:44am and your next meeting starting at 10:45am.

                    so there has to be periods where you can check your context lists.

                    It only takes 5-10 seconds maybe up to 60 seconds to look at an @Calls list, or @office list and see what is on there.

                    I mean seriously how long do you think it would take you to look at your @office list see that you have to grab that business card and you are done.

                    Comment

                    Working...
                    X