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Procrastination on the Someday/Maybe

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  • Procrastination on the Someday/Maybe

    How do you guys deal with the subconscious resistance when going through your Someday/Maybe list.
    I keep procrastinating from turning my Someday/Maybe list to Project list.

    By the way, do you divide your Someday/Maybe list into long term and short term?
    Last edited by gtdnubcake; 04-12-2013, 05:37 AM.

  • #2
    that's not procrastination

    I wouldn't call that procrastination... the reason they're on someday/maybe is because you don't feel or don't have the possibility to do them know... if you resist turning them into actual projects, you're deciding... well, that you don't feel or don't have the possibility to do them know

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    • #3
      Originally posted by gtdnubcake View Post
      How do you guys deal with the subconscious resistance when going through your Someday/Maybe list.
      I keep procrastinating from turning my Someday/Maybe list to Project list.

      By the way, do you divide your Someday/Maybe list into long term and short term?
      As Myriam said. However, it is possible you have some items on your Someday/Maybe list that you feel you should be doing now. It may be worthwhile to ask why things are on that list, as in "Redecorating the upstairs is on my Someday/Maybe list because: we don't have the money right now/I don't have the time/our youngest child still lives at home/I don't know what I want/other household jobs are more important." If the answer you give for an item being on the list seems wrong to you, then you may want to make it active or delete it. It seems to me that dividing the list into short-term and long-term would only have negative effects.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by mcogilvie View Post
        It may be worthwhile to ask why things are on that list, as in "Redecorating the upstairs is on my Someday/Maybe list because: we don't have the money right now/I don't have the time/our youngest child still lives at home/I don't know what I want/other household jobs are more important." If the answer you give for an item being on the list seems wrong to you, then you may want to make it active or delete it.
        I like this! There are so many different reasons things may be on a Someday/Maybe list from wrong season (that snow WILL disappear soon!!!) to things you just heard about that sound kind of neat to consider some time in the future (in 20 years when I'm retired.)

        If something has your attention, pay attention. The fact that you're not entirely satisfied with your list might mean that there is something on it that shouldn't be. Beware of unprocessed projects/actions hiding on your Someday/Maybe. In the example above, if the reason Redecorate is on the list is because you don't know what you want, perhaps it should actually be an active project with a next action of "Buy decorating magazine" or "Call interior designer" or "Mindmap ideas for the family room reno". If the reason is no time or money then Someday/Maybe is likely the perfect place.

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        • #5
          I don't have much to add, but I want to echo what PMSiobhanBR said and maybe pitch in an example from my own system.

          Knowing what job each list is there to accomplish is key. Another reason you might have attention on the Someday/Maybe list is that there are things in there that aren't either a project or a next action, but fall in *some* other category. Maybe you need more lists for different purposes or jobs. Such as "Books I want to read" or simply "Thoughts" you don't want to lose but don't know where to put.

          I'm a voracious reader, so I have a list separate from my main Someday/Maybe where I put all the books I want to read and even categorize them by area of focus, who recommended it to me and what they got out of it, and why it seemed relevant at the time. I keep that list in an OmniOutliner file.

          Then I have a monthly routine where I go through that list and put together my study plan for the month, which then becomes a project (I read the books, take notes, derive projects or checklists and then share and discuss the books with my spouse and friends to really make the content stick).

          Before I came up with this system, I had all books on my Someday/Maybe list and I just couldn't get S/M of my mind!

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          • #6
            My experiment

            I've always had a large S/M list (300+) and have experimented with a single list versus segments.

            My latest experiment is using three segments:

            Someday/Aversion - I could move forward but there's some aversion to recognize or define better
            Someday/Bandwidth - the action or outcome is clear but I just don't have the bandwidth
            Someday/Future - these things are too far off to make actionable right now (or are they?)

            I was going for something reliable to use when I process new content into my system and hopefully more meaningful when I do my Weekly Review (tomorrow).

            I recognize this method could turn out to be really dumb. But I'm simply changing contexts within OmniFocus so it's easy to move back and forth.

            Mark

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Mark Jantzen View Post
              Someday/Aversion - I could move forward but there's some aversion to recognize or define better
              Someday/Bandwidth - the action or outcome is clear but I just don't have the bandwidth
              Someday/Future - these things are too far off to make actionable right now (or are they?)
              Interesting. I might try something like that at some point.

              Aversion is variable. Identifying a first action, and even more so actually doing it,
              tends to considerably reduce the aversion to the whole project.

              Rather than the word "aversion" I might call it "processing", meaning
              that those projects need more processing. I would find that positive
              wording more encouraging. I guess the intention would be to move all
              the projects from aversion/processing into the bandwidth category.

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              • #8
                Resistance can be cured with some breaks. Have a break for a while and just keep pushing. I divide my Someday/Maybe so that I won't be stocked into doing things that are supposed to be long term for short terms.

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                • #9
                  If you've reviewed an item on Someday/Maybe many times and each time you've
                  decided not to do it that week, then in future reviews, because of habit,
                  it's then easier to decide again not to do it and harder to decide to do it.

                  This is one reason I think it's a good idea to separate the Someday/Maybe list
                  into lists to be reviewed more often and less often. That way, something you
                  want to do sometime in the next few years doesn't get tarnished by large
                  numbers of reviews and rejections before you actually face doing it.

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