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  • Anyone else stuck between paper and GTD?

    Hi folks,

    Having practiced GTD for about 6 months now, I'm still have one major problem...

    I have tried to go to the "one system" approach - the obvious choice is using Outlook with the GTD plug-in (which I am using), but I can't seem to let go of having a daily paper-based list, relegating GTD to a repository of everything else which I update.

    Anyone else in the same boat?

    This morning I have analysed why I do this and have come up wth the following.

    1) I have some many tasks in my GTD task folders in Outlook that it's pretty overwhelming and to try and organise daily tasks from that bunch is like looking at an attic that have been stuff full! I tend to dump on my daily list anythign in my head which needs doing.

    2) I love computers, but still get great satisfaction from physically crossing something off a list when it is done. Call me daft, but I feel ticking a "complete" box comes a poor second!!

    3) Writing a list on paper is still so much quicker that creating a similar list in Outlook. Also during the day it is easy to add other things as they pop into my head.

    I realise 2 & 3 are things I should just get over, so the main problem is (1). Anyone else faced this beast and managed to get something which really works well?

    My current thinking is to maybe:

    1) Create a view in outlook which only shows a small sub-set of GTD tasks for that week.
    2) Print these off each day and work with the list manually.
    3) At the end of the day, update everything electronically and recycle the paper!

    What do you think?

    Thanks in advance,
    Ralph

  • #2
    I use both

    I feel the same way about crossing off something on paper versus the computer check box.

    I use both a PDA and paper to GTD. My paper list is the more fluid, I use if for immediate projects and NA that I have committed to moving forward on this week. I keep my PDA as reference for those opportunistic times that I find myself in a context I wasn't expecting.

    Mindi

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Ralphino

      My current thinking is to maybe:

      1) Create a view in outlook which only shows a small sub-set of GTD tasks for that week.
      2) Print these off each day and work with the list manually.
      3) At the end of the day, update everything electronically and recycle the paper!

      What do you think?

      Ralph
      What I do is:
      1)trim the list by putting some tasks in a separate someday/maybe task list, (not forgetting to review this list in the weekly review)
      2) I also tag tasks as high priority and have a View set up (in Outlook) where I only see those high priority items - that gives me a day list.
      3) If I go out I print this list to take with me (I don't have a PDA) and cross out tasks that get done.
      4) I then do your 3) above!

      If I don't go out I now just work from the computer. I think if one is used to working with paper it's difficult to jump suddenly to only digital but I seemed to have moved that way naturally with time. No need to force it in my opinion.

      I personally enjoy more ticking off items as complete in Outlook than crossing off on paper, because its so much cleaner.

      Good luck

      Comment


      • #4
        Have you considered a paper system?

        Originally posted by Ralphino
        I have tried to go to the "one system" approach - the obvious choice is using Outlook with the GTD plug-in (which I am using), but I can't seem to let go of having a daily paper-based list, relegating GTD to a repository of everything else which I update.
        Have you considered using an all-paper system? Keep action-reference stuff in Outlook, but keep your actual action triggers on paper?

        I use a Microsoft Word document for my action lists, which I update and print daily. All my collection and organization stuff is on paper, in a 5.5 x 8.5 inch binder. I work in front of a computer all day, so it's nice to get away from the machine for a while when doing reviews.

        Paper may work for you, and it may not. But you might think about it...

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Ralphino
          1) I have some many tasks in my GTD task folders in Outlook that it's pretty overwhelming and to try and organise daily tasks from that bunch is like looking at an attic that have been stuff full! I tend to dump on my daily list anythign in my head which needs doing.
          After I've reviewed the next action list, I often make a simple paper list of things I want to do on a particular day and then just forget about the NA list for the rest of the day. These are the days where it is obvious to me what I want (and need) to do that day and I can't be bothered to review the NA list everytime I finish one task.

          In a way it is a temporary abandonment of GTD, but in reality such days are actually made possible by following the GTD discipline at other times.

          Comment


          • #6
            Hi! Also see my new system, which worked well through my commitment ceremony just now (180 people in the back yard) which I think recommends it! There's no rule that you have to be only computer- or paper-based. Just find a system that 1) collects your stuff, 2) makes places you can trust to store/process the information, and 3) lends itself to a good weekly review.

            http://www.davidco.com/forum/showthread.php?t=5353

            Do Mi

            Comment


            • #7
              makes sense

              That is just what I was thinking. It seems to me this is addressed somewhere in the book. Use the tools that best suit the task. Paper will work better in some contexts and the computer in others...not so?

              Comment

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