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  • Process practices?

    When you process a huge mound of "stuff" and you discern a next action or project to create, or something that you want to make sure you include in executing a project (piece of information or certain action), do you enter it at that time right into your system (i.e., put it on you Project list, Context lists, SDMB, @LISTS)? Or, do you collect this information by making notes that you enter into your system later? I did a big batch and as I processed I used a single piece of paper with headings for Active Projects, SDMB and the various contexts I use. The only things I did in the moment were calendar entries, address data entries, and other two minute or less jobs. When the single page was pretty full, I entered it all. I think it was more efficient. The downside is if you get interupted you have not really finished the processing cycle on the individual items, also, if you have entered the information already, you may have wasted time writing it. The upside is more time spent processing at processing time and less time hunting through my lists to see if I had it on them already (although I am finding that as I use more uniform headings,I can enter and locate a duplicate faster than I can search to see if I somethingis already on the list.)

    With filing, I am finding it useful to file an item immediatly only if it applies to a currently active project but if not, to write on the top right hand edge of item it's heading and put it in my a to z sorter. I am hoping that I can hire an assistant to file those or do that filing when I am not at peak mental energy.

    I would love to hear about anything that makes this work easier, faster, or more fun.

  • #2
    My lists are maintained in Word, with a fresh list printed daily. I write any new NAs on the paper list as I process them. Then when I refresh that list, I type in any NAs that didn't get crossed off. This makes processing fast and efficient.

    I do typically batch the creation of reference files, but never more than a half-day's worth. My P-Touch is in another office, or I'd do it immediately, which is what I canonically should be doing. Sometimes I'll steal the P-Touch for an afternoon, and I agree with DA that it's smarter to do it immediately.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Jamie Elis
      The upside is more time spent processing at processing time and less time hunting through my lists to see if I had it on them already (although I am finding that as I use more uniform headings,I can enter and locate a duplicate faster than I can search to see if I somethingis already on the list.)
      When I come across new NA or Project I enter it to my lists right there. When entering I don't bother if it's duplicated or not because I'm not so stupid to do the same twice so I can always delete a duplicate on the run or during Daily or Weekly review. I use PDA and sometimes I get NAs and Projects faster then I can enter Then I use a sheet of paper to write them quickly down and put an NA to process the notes.

      Regards,

      Eugene.

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      • #4
        I put it directly into my system, immediately.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Jamie Elis
          When you process a huge mound of "stuff" and you discern a next action or project to create, or something that you want to make sure you include in executing a project (piece of information or certain action), do you enter it at that time right into your system (i.e., put it on you Project list, Context lists, SDMB, @LISTS)? Or, do you collect this information by making notes that you enter into your system later?
          These things always go to my inbox unless they need immediate action. I know I will have it during processing the next morning when I'll have more time to concentrate exactly on all the things that need to be done with it with no distractions. If there's something about it I'm afraid I'll forget in one day (almost never), I may throw a note into the inbox as well.

          Whenever possible anything new to my system goes through the inbox first. Its about as hard a rule for me as there is.

          Tom S.

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          • #6
            -> inbox

            I'm with Tom on this: I'll put the notes in my inbox, then get to them when I do processing and organization, ideally every day or two. This really requires me to stay on top of the inbox, though - I've had a few times in which I let it go too long, and "quick response" items (like 24 hour follow-ups for networking) didn't get activated fast enough.

            I wrote a little about processing meeting notes in Dealing with Meeting Notes - GTD to the Rescue!, if you're interested. Basically, if the notes can be processed in two minutes or less, I do them right there. If not, they go on my next actions list ("Process xx notes") in the appropriate context (usually "Home"). I do sometimes put them in my portable "Action Support" folder, so that I can do them at either of my offices.

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            • #7
              The inbox has been a godsend...

              I'm pretty new at GTD, but I have to admit, the inbox is one of the most amazing pieces of it. I have always been good at capturing stuff, but I never knew where to put things I'd captured, so they just sort of piled up into more stuff - which would cause me to hesitate before capturing new things when the list got too long. This was because I was always trying to shift gears and process, prioritize, etc., with the new thing rather than just capture it and move on. So far I have been good at emptying my inbox every day, or several times a day, so it is very freeing to be able to capture the thing, throw it in the inbox, and know that sometime soon I will take a moment to give it the consideration it deserves rather than let it interrupt the flow of what I'm currently doing.

              I still hesitate on the capture a bit if it's going straight into my Palm because I feel obligated to identify the next action right then and there... I suppose I need a spot to be my inbox on that device. Usually I just capture the new thing on paper that I can toss in my inbox when I get near it, but sometimes the Palm is all I've got.

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              • #8
                I carry my Palm in a case that also has room for a small pen and a few notecards. That lets me capture *everything* without the desire to process that you mentioned. It's also faster, because I can write faster than I can Graffiti.

                Katherine

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                • #9
                  Palm Note Pad application - capturing without Graffiti.

                  Originally posted by kewms
                  I carry my Palm in a case that also has room for a small pen and a few notecards. That lets me capture *everything* without the desire to process that you mentioned. It's also faster, because I can write faster than I can Graffiti.
                  You don't have to use Graffiti to capture something using Palm. Memos application does require Graffiti but in Note Pad application you can capture everything without Palm attempting to interpret it.

                  Besides some Palms are equipped with voice recorder.

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                  • #10
                    I don't carry my Palm in a case, but I do carry a little Post-It note wallet in my back pocket so I can usually get to a piece of paper. I'm getting a new Treo 700p tomorrow, which has a keyboard, so the stylus thing won't matter so much. I guess it's more when I'm sitting there with the Palm in my hand and the new thing appears on the radar, it seems to make sense to capture it right then and there without going through the physical inbox. A digital inbox on the Palm seems to make sense. I have an inbox at home, another at work... why not one in my pocket?

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                    • #11
                      voice recorder is a good inbox!

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                      • #12
                        I've tried voice recorders...

                        I've tried voice recorders in the past with little success, but I'm thinking about trying again. With digital recorders (folders, nonlinear access, etc.) and GTD I believe that the pain of transcribing the voice notes will be greatly reduced. You can listen to one small bit of your recording, then determine if there is a project, an action, etc., and dispatch it, then delete the voice note. I was looking at some in the store the other day, but I have not made a decision yet.

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                        • #13
                          I use my digital voice recorder a lot. But I use it only in situations where it is inconvenient or dangerous to create a written notes. My primary use of my recorder is when driving. On most days when driving to or from work I will think of something that needs to be recorded. Secondarily, I will use the recorder when I need to keep walking from place to place or when I am outside and paper notes might get wet or be difficult for some other reason.

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                          • #14
                            Agreed...

                            Originally posted by moises
                            I use my digital voice recorder a lot. But I use it only in situations where it is inconvenient or dangerous to create a written notes. My primary use of my recorder is when driving. On most days when driving to or from work I will think of something that needs to be recorded. Secondarily, I will use the recorder when I need to keep walking from place to place or when I am outside and paper notes might get wet or be difficult for some other reason.
                            Yeah, it's mainly when I'm driving that I have difficulty with capturing ideas effectively. I keep paper handy, but my penmanship on the road leaves much to be desired. It would also be nice to be able to capture ideas when I'm running.

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                            • #15
                              Mobile phone with voice recorder.

                              Use a mobile phone with voice recorder built-in. You will not have to carry a separate device for recording your thoughts.

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