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Marathon or mingey bits?

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  • Marathon or mingey bits?

    Relative newcomer needs advise from you GTD vets. I've cleared the decks and the desk and am ready to plow in and do The Big Collection. I have the luxury of being able to do it in a marathon, multi-day session, or I could poke at it on a regular basis. I'd be very grateful to hear how you went about it and what you felt were the pros and cons of each. Instinct tells me that the marathon method might produce a delightful cathartic effect and would certainly get it done, but I fear burnout. Doing mingey bits would eventually also get it done and doing it that way might allow me to integrate the processes more smoothly, but I fear dropping the ball.

    Your comments all welcome.

  • #2
    I could take only about 4 hours per day. I think it took me about 6 weekdays. So I would consider my approach a hybrid. Doing as much as I could stand OR as much as I had time for each day (whichever came first) until I was done worked for me.

    Happy processing!

    -andersons

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    • #3
      Originally posted by andersons
      Doing as much as I could stand OR as much as I had time for each day (whichever came first) until I was done worked for me.
      Ah, the voice of reason! Makes complete sense, thank you, and I'm off!

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Marathon or mingey bits?

        Originally posted by Arduinna
        Relative newcomer needs advise from you GTD vets. I've cleared the decks and the desk and am ready to plow in and do The Big Collection. I have the luxury of being able to do it in a marathon, multi-day session, or I could poke at it on a regular basis. I'd be very grateful to hear how you went about it and what you felt were the pros and cons of each. Instinct tells me that the marathon method might produce a delightful cathartic effect and would certainly get it done, but I fear burnout. Doing mingey bits would eventually also get it done and doing it that way might allow me to integrate the processes more smoothly, but I fear dropping the ball.

        Your comments all welcome.
        I've never done the "big bang", but have had success with doing one little area at the time.

        I started at work, maybe because home is a lot bigger task.

        Getting an in basket and setting up the right folders in your mail program are a good place to start.

        Do the same at home and the need for a reference file will soon show it self both at work and at home.

        Regards
        Peter

        Comment


        • #5
          yeah, i would definitely start at it right away and do as much or as little as you can until you are done.

          A few years back I got into trouble by trying to plan a perfect time to start GTD.

          However each day I was able to convince myself that I had a lot of work and didn't have the time to get organized.

          It took me a couple of months from reading the book to actually doing anything because I kept waiting for that perfect day.

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          • #6
            It's funny how different we are! As an organizing junkie, I found implementing GTD to be the perfect excuse not to do any real work for a week or so!

            Just tackle it any way that works for you and feels good. Good luck and welcome!

            Taxgeek

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            • #7
              I followed Chapter 4's recommendation to use two whole days to get jump started. For the rest of the process, I added next actions to my list (e.g., process pile of stuff in corner of bedroom).

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              • #8
                Originally posted by jmarkey
                ....... I added next actions to my list (e.g., process pile of stuff in corner of bedroom).
                Simple as it seems, great advice.

                Thanks.

                Peter

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by taxgeek
                  It's funny how different we are! As an organizing junkie, I found implementing GTD to be the perfect excuse not to do any real work for a week or so!

                  Just tackle it any way that works for you and feels good. Good luck and welcome!

                  Taxgeek


                  heehee, I know what you mean!

                  Reading about GTD was a good excuse for me to avoid work, but when it came to actually implementing it, real work all of a sudden became more tempting!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Getting an in basket and setting up the right folders in your mail program are a good place to start.
                    Do the same at home and the need for a reference file will soon show it self both at work and at home.
                    Unfortunately, work is home/home is work, which seems to make it feel insurmountable. I know it's not, but I am starting to recall with perverse nostalgia the papers that were always at the bottom of my in-box at an old job, undealt-with and dog-eared by the time I left. I can see them quite clearly and immediately remember the naggy feeling they gave me, which proves to me David's point about the negative effect of those amorphous blobs. I'd relish being able to polish them off now. My undealt-withs now occupy a number of bankers boxes, and I know I'll wind up shredding much of the contents. I keep envisioning a beautiful, spare office, which is inspiring me to keep at it. I wonder how "big" this will be; I purchased two real in-boxes and filled them within 45 minutes and generated 90 file labels in the process, which shocked me. But it's going to be wonderful to know where things are and be able to retrieve them without a memory dissection.

                    I followed Chapter 4's recommendation to use two whole days to get jump started. For the rest of the process, I added next actions to my list (e.g., process pile of stuff in corner of bedroom).
                    As Peter says, that really is a valuable tip. Converts the project into the process/processing.

                    Thank you all for the advice!

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                    • #11
                      Just start at the top

                      My one bit of advice from watching others fail is to be sure you start at the top and disposition every single bit of stuff one thing at a time.

                      When I've done the massive collection and processing, I've found it difficult to get much done because everything I needed was in the one pile instead of covering every available surface in the room. So I had to plow through it in order to get anything else done.

                      I've seen people who don't have one big pile get distracted by all the stuff their still surrounded by and find the process so prolonged that they get discouraged and give up. So you could start on one side of the room and work around, but it takes discipline.

                      I think its best to collect ALL the stuff and go until you can't take it anymore. A couple of days of discipline will provide weeks, months or years of return.

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