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  • Solutions Needed

    Basically, I don't do what needs to be done.

    Daily Lists

    I have lists that must be done everyday such as a morning list, night list, stuff to bring w/ me when going out, stuff to do when i'm back from work, etc. and I sometimes don't do them, skip them, or do some of them. I have printed these lists as a reminder by the computer (where I am 90% of the time) and I am still not religious in following these lists.

    Next Action Lists

    When I have nothing to do, I do what I feel like doing, or I do what's fun, or get distracted by my wife, daily events, or whatever seems to be happening. It's like my NA lists are nonexistant sometimes and I just don't look at them to see what should be done next.


    How do I remember what errands I have to do when I go out? I sometimes run errands in an area (mall etc.) but then forget to do another errand in that same area. I thought of setting my PDA alarm on when I think I might be @ the errand location. But what if I don't know what time I'll be there?


  • #2
    Adam, the last we heard from you, you were cramming activities into your life like crazy and asking for help on how to cram still more.

    Several people on this board advised you to cram less and relax more. You thought that was not such a good idea, because you had it all worked out that this was how you wanted to live in order to accomplish your many goals.

    Please understand that this is said in all kindness. I can't help thinking that your present state of mind is a reaction to all the pressure you were putting on yourself. A swing of the pendulum, if you will. GTD doesn't ask you to cram. It gives you ways to live a balanced life -- and you are the one to determine what constitutes balance for you.

    End of sermon -- I don't have practical suggestions at the moment but will think of a few, as I am sure others will. Meanwhile, if you haven't already done so, please take some quiet time to meditate on what a balanced life would look like for you and your wife.


    • #3
      No system on earth will force you to do something you don't want to do.

      Why are you ignoring or avoiding your lists? Until you can answer that, there isn't much advice we can offer.

      On errands specifically, I make it a habit to check my @Errand list whenever I'm out. If you have trouble doing that, one answer might be to put a printed copy of the list next to your car keys, in your wallet, or in some other difficult-to-ignore place.



      • #4
        I heard David Allen say recently that procrastination comes from one of two problems: either you aren't excited about the outcome or you haven't broken down the next immediate step into something actionable. So either you've lost your passion for your goals or you haven't broken them down into doable pieces.

        And as for your errands list, I keep a list of errands I want to run when I'm in town. I have the usual errands that I must run (gas, groceries, etc.), and if I find that I have both the time and energy to do more, I look at my list. Very simple. I don't allow myself to beat myself up over not having the energy to do them because that is a waste of what little energy I have. I know that they will get done eventually and that everything will be okay.


        • #5
          a few ideas

          When you put an action on your errand list you might note where you can get the item or conduct the business, if urgent or longterm, note any date on your calendar with enough lead time, and youm might note the approximate cost. Print out the @errands, review the list and do them in a planned way. Go where you need to go to get the most done or the most urgently needed stuff done, or what you can afford at the time, or where you want to go that day given the weather, etc. . Make sure you have whatever specifications you need to make the purchases in your PDA (@lists is good for this).

          If you want to follow GTD and feel it fits your life and way of thinking, perhaps you might review your Projects list and see what you can put in your SDMB list.

          If you are following the GTD model, and are stuck, you might want to check the relationship between your Projects and the higher values at the various levels.

          Do your projects match your energy level, time available, and your talents?

          Maybe you need to intentionally plan constructive rest?

          Do you have an adequate support system?

          Maybe you need a mentor for a specific project of yours?

          I presently dislike almost all my n/as, most of my projects, and the weekly review, so I avoid them, many old stale items are clogging up the system and I feel like a failure looking at the same things over and over but this ystem is supposed to help me manage my work not make me feel like a failure. So, I am hoping I can start revising all of these, not so much where I am going but how I am going to get there.


          • #6
            Adam, here is my advice.

            For Daily lists, you obviously have them because you know you should be doing them. Think of the consequences of each thing on the list if you don't do them. If its not a big deal then scrap the item, if it is a big deal then think about the consequence to get you going.

            If you practice these lists eventually it will become considerably easy, and automatic (sub-conscious).

            Next Action Lists
            When its earlier in the day, or when you first look at your list. Try to do the tougher item first, if you get something hard done it will give you a sense of accomplishment, and give you confidence to do other difficult or mundane tasks. By the end of the day you will have easy stuff, and can just relax.

            For Errands, just make individual store or mall context lists, so when you are going to Staples grab your @Staples context or going to MetroSuperPlex Mall, you have your @MetroSuperPlex Mall context.


            • #7
              Communism and national education system.

              Originally posted by kewms
              No system on earth will force you to do something you don't want to do.
              Oh, I know such systems.

              First one is communism which forced whole nations to do ridiculous things that they did not want to do.

              The second one (on the lighter side) is the national education system


              • #8
                Originally posted by adamsoprano
                How do I remember what errands I have to do when I go out? I sometimes run errands in an area (mall etc.) but then forget to do another errand in that same area. I thought of setting my PDA alarm on when I think I might be @ the errand location. But what if I don't know what time I'll be there?
                I think DA said something to the effect that you have to think about your stuff more than you think you do, but not as much as you're afraid you'll have to (which alternately relieves and frustrates me, lol).

                Perhaps you are trying to get away with too little thinking about your errands. It sounds like you are doing great with collecting them and putting them onto a list. But they still won't magically get done without some thought. Do you have a specific time or day of the week when you do errands? Look at your hard landscape for a few minutes and figure out what your opportunities are to knock off errands when you're already in the neighborhood. If you will be near the mall and you have enough time to do errands on that trip, add mall errands to your calendar event. For the ones that require a special trip, it can be kind of a game to see how efficiently you can plan them to minimize the gas or time. Can you do all your remaining errands at one time? It can be motivating to say if I don't do it now, it has to wait until next week. Some things can be put off several consecutive weeks or eventually dropped altogether, while the important stuff finds a way to get done.

                It seems pretty normal around here to do a little daily planning or reviewing. Errands do have to displace some water in your mind or they won't get done at all.