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  • Getting started

    I'm on the verge of GTD-day and was wondering if anyone can point me to a concise summary of the steps involved in implementing the GTD system.

    Thanks in advance

  • #2
    Have you read the GTD book?

    Have you read the GTD book?

    If so - define your inbox(es), get some paper and do your first psychic RAM dump.

    And do not forget to schedule the Weekly Review.

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    • #3
      Yeah - I've read the book - I still feel unclear about how to proceed.

      Defining in-boxes sound like a good place to start - thanks.

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      • #4
        areas of responsbility and focus

        You might make a brief outline of areas of responsbility and focus, not detailed just the highlights. Then, as a result of processing you can develop this better and just get rid of things that don't pertain to them. then start yoor project list with desired outcomes briefly described, just from your "head". That way, as you process, you won't be spending so much time defining projects.

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        • #5
          Top-down and bottom-up.

          Originally posted by Jamie Elis
          You might make a brief outline of areas of responsbility and focus, not detailed just the highlights.
          It is a top-down approach to psychic RAM dump. You briefly define your areas of responsibility (work, home, family, health etc.) and try to identify any problems, challenges, ideas and dreams within these areas. Then you should spend some time on "what else" brainstorming (bottom-up approach).

          Do not be afraid that you've forgotten to write down something during this intitial RAM dump. You can always update your lists. As a professional GTDer you will always have your Ubiquitous Capture Tool (NoteTaker wallet, paper notebook, voice recorder or PDA) with you. As soon as you remember something or think about a new idea - write it down using your UCT, and then process the notes according to the GTD workflow diagram.

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          • #6
            Also note that you can have multiple capture tools, as long as they all funnel into an inbox that you regularly process.

            For example, I usually use my celphone/PDA as my ubiquitous capture tool, but in my work environment there are places where I'm not allowed to take a celphone. So I have a small deck of index cards that I take when I go in there. Every day or so, I check the cards and add anything written on the cards to my system.

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            • #7
              Great stuff guys.

              Writing down my areas of responsibility with desired outcomes is a great suggestion! I have started this now. Not having to do this on 'GTD-day' will free up my brain to focus on the structure (as opposed to the content) that I'm about to create.

              As for a UCT, I looked around and was drawn to the Hipster PDA. So I made one and used it for the first time at a meeting today (found it a bit fiddly). I keep it with my phone which I am already in the habit of taking with me. I'll try the HPDA for a while - however the sheer simplicity of the 5x3 card method is also appealing...

              Thanks for the pointers.

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              • #8
                One great thing for me about GTD is that I don't care what the capture method is (back of cocktail napkin is fine), as I can just throw it in my In Box and it will get processed & acted on. I bought a wallet that holds 3x5 cards, and that is handy, but around the office I often just scribble on scratch paper and drop it in.

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                • #9
                  The Post-It UCT

                  CosmoGTD, great Post-It post. I love the idea of implementing GTD without expensive "must-have" accessories that aren't really necessary.

                  I too have carried Post-It notes around from time to time, but I get stuck on a silly basic problem: what to do with a note I have written on? Where do I stick it? In another part of my wallet, where it will get mixed up with credit cards and $bills? In my pocket, where it will get wadded up in the laundry and become illegible? What do you do?

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                  • #10
                    I too have carried Post-It notes around from time to time, but I get stuck on a silly basic problem: what to do with a note I have written on? Where do I stick it? In another part of my wallet, where it will get mixed up with credit cards and $bills? In my pocket, where it will get wadded up in the laundry and become illegible? What do you do?
                    I have been keeping a 3 inch X 3 inch generic Post-It pad in my wallet for a few years, along with a "Wallet Pen." Where to stick it has never been a problem. When I am processing I take stuff (receipts, post-it notes, etc.) out of my wallet and throw them into my physical inbox.

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                    • #11
                      Things are coming along nicely - thanks for all the suggestions and pointers above. (the post-its in the wallet is the current UCT)

                      I have a new dilemma - I work form home and am finding it difficult to get my head round the contexts for the NA's.

                      When I'm sitting at my desk, I'm @home, @computer, @calls (as well as contributing to @agendas)

                      This means that for me there is no practical difference between these 3 main contexts - effectively making them all the same.

                      Do I just keep them and fire through the calls (say) when I'm in 'phone mode' making a firm distinction between 'home' and 'work' - only doing the home stuff when I'm not working on my business?
                      Do I refine them further (@email, @learning, @research...)?

                      Any suggestions?

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                      • #12
                        I also work at home, and have kept most of the contexts. For me, contexts define how much concentration I need, as well as the physical resources needed. For example, I can often blast through a long list of phone calls in 30-60 minutes or so, but I need at least an hour to do any serious reading or writing.

                        My advice would be to play with it and see what works for you.

                        Katherine

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                        • #13
                          It's funny reading all your solutions to noting stuff down. Growing up my dad always had his little spiral bound notebook in his shirt pocket and we would kid him about it. We used to all get these spiral bound notebooks for gifts, and roll our eyes. I didn't know that my dad was onto the original hispster PDA. I should call him and tell him how cool he has become! I guess it worked for him because he managed to make a pretty good living on a low salary, send us to college, start a non-profit environmental group etc. etc. and he's still filling those notebooks. I should turn him onto GTD so that he has something to do with all that info in the notebooks.

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