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  • Simplifying the process...

    I've been reading some of the topics here and have been thinking... would a simplified version of GTD be useful to some of us?

    One post in particular got me thinking... that basically all of my N/A's are done in one or two places - work or home - so, wouldn't it make better sense for me to only have 1 list? I'm thinking that it might.

    The only other "lists" that I really need are to track projects, someday/maybe and waiting for... I really think that's it.

    I recently switched back to paper from a Palm, and to tell the truth I really think that it's more "usable" in the sense that I felt the Palm was a little disconnected from the way that I work (I'm very visual). In doing the "switch", I've found the categorized lists to be a little too cumbersome.

    Any thoughts? Anyone else have something similar to this?

  • #2
    Simplifying to the simplest system that works ...

    You might recognize me from the occasional "Now I'm trying this structure of lists and such" posts...

    Like you, I've gone through some forced changes to my system (multiple hard resets of my Palm, lost backup files when my work PC went fubar simultaneously) and in the rush of recapturing everything, I've entered everything back into the Unfiled category, and only if I need to have I made any other categories... Errands, Work, and I may actually make a Home category.

    I agree with you that if you almost always have (especially phone and computer) access to your major resources, there's much less value in lots of contexts. Plus, I can perform my "Do choosing" much faster with just the scroll down instead of having to rotate the lists too.

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    • #3
      Only as simple as necessary

      The system doesn't have to be complicated at all -- the only computerized part of my system is that I keep my NA lists in a single Microsoft Word document.

      For NAs, you can have one list if you like -- the important part is to make sure you can quickly distinguish the contexts of the NAs, so you don't spend a lot of time looking at stuff that doesn't matter in your current context. "Replace bedroom light switch" shouldn't be trying to get your attention when you're at work.

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      • #4
        Re: Only as simple as necessary

        Originally posted by flexiblefine
        For NAs, you can have one list if you like -- the important part is to make sure you can quickly distinguish the contexts of the NAs, so you don't spend a lot of time looking at stuff that doesn't matter in your current context. "Replace bedroom light switch" shouldn't be trying to get your attention when you're at work.
        Right... that makes sense. What I've done in my paper planner is have one daily list, with a space (several blank lines) in between to distinguish "work" from "Home".

        But the fact remains, I almost ALWAYS have a phone handy, or am at a PC, etc.

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        • #5
          My 2 Cents

          I agree with only having one list. I have a basic papre planner, in the left margin I'll put @calls , @ desk etc. and just scroll down. I do keep my erands list in my PPC Phone, since it goes with me everywhere. I keep my calender in my PPC, but I also have a week at a glance in my binder for the visual.

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          • #6
            Re: Only as simple as necessary

            Originally posted by jkgrossi
            Right... that makes sense. What I've done in my paper planner is have one daily list, with a space (several blank lines) in between to distinguish "work" from "Home".
            How is this different from calling it two lists? My lists (which I think of as multiple lists) are all on one piece of paper, with context headers.

            I think we may just be discussing semantics here. If you trust it and it works quickly for you, keep on doing it!

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            • #7
              Re: Only as simple as necessary

              Originally posted by flexiblefine
              Originally posted by jkgrossi
              Right... that makes sense. What I've done in my paper planner is have one daily list, with a space (several blank lines) in between to distinguish "work" from "Home".
              How is this different from calling it two lists? My lists (which I think of as multiple lists) are all on one piece of paper, with context headers.

              I think we may just be discussing semantics here. If you trust it and it works quickly for you, keep on doing it!
              Um... I didn't say that it was. I was just telling you what *I* do....

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              • #8
                I have to keep it simple due to technical limitations.

                I'm currently using my Sidekick II as my portable device. With the $10 IntelliSync program, I can keep both my work Outlook and my home Outlook calendar and tasks in sync and they all exist on my Sidekick. There's only one problem: the Sidekick doesn't support Task List categories.

                So stealing a little from the Pig-Pog method, I currently enter all of my NA's in this format:

                @<context> {<project>} <task desc.>

                example:
                @computer {VAC} Fill out passport application

                This way, they automatically sort by context and project in Outlook and give me some categorization ability on my Sidekick. So far, I'm pleased with the sync'ing setup. I've never had my work and personal calendar all in my pocket! The Sidekick is great for quick NA entry (hidden QWERTY thumbpad). But I'm thinking the 50 To-Do's max limit may be a problem one day.

                I've just started the system this week. I'm using the Inbox and Next Actions mechanism to wrangle my current tasks and I've schedule myself a weekend review where I'll do my review and project organization.

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