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Dumbed down GTD w/Post-Its and posterboard

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  • Dumbed down GTD w/Post-Its and posterboard

    My GTD system was working great for a while, then a number of disruptions came into my life (prospect of open heart surgery for a congenitally defective aortic valve, hurricane Wilma causing significant destruction in South Florida) that set me back from focusing on keeping it current.

    My GTD system has been computer based, but during the time that I was out of power due to hurricane Wilma, I wanted to sit with my wife and get her involved in GTD and working on our goals together. I felt like this was a critical piece that was missing so we were congruent in terms of what we were moving towards and found it difficult to do with my computer-based system.

    Since I couldn’t explain it via the computer (no power), I started capturing current NAs and projects on post-its. I then arranged them from left to right in the order of NA, 10K, 20K, 30K, 40K and 50K. For example, all my NAs were listed vertically on the whiteboard in the left most column and all my 50K items were listed vertically on the whiteboard in the right most column. I would pull any project post-its to the left that I could identify an immediate NA for. It’s a simplified system and doesn’t yet define things in context (thinking of using different color post-its for contexts).

    The great thing is that my wife immediately latched onto this where I had challenges explaining it in computer based form in the past. She’s been more productive this past couple of weeks than she has been in a very long time.

    For work related issues, I still use an electronic based system, but for not work related items that my wife and I share together, I am managing with this prototyped system.

  • #2

    Congratulations on finding an innovative system that is easy to understand and teach to your wife. It's to your credit that amid all that chaos, you hung in there with GTD. Seems like that technique could be used to teach school children GTD, or at least a form of managing their classwork. Teachers try to 'warn' kids about upcoming projects and some require the steps to be done/turned-in along the way with varying degrees of success. I'm just all for another visual way to teach.



    • #3
      I have used post-it notes and a glass door in my house to brainstorm and then plan out a couple of assignments for my MBA.

      Useful little things.

      If you only have a couple of contexts, maybe you could group the the same context actions together as horizontal groups (rows)