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  • GTD assumes no division between home and work related NAs?

    Please correct me if I'm wrong. GTD assumes that there's no line between home and work related Next Actions. That means that if you have a work-project-related Next Action that you can do @computer (i.e. put new prices into existing price list) and you find yourself with a spare minute without any other priority actions except for that on your lists at your house after dinner with your family then you should do it at home? Is it right? Then it looks like the line between home and work dissappears? Is it really Ok to do my job related tasks while at home???


    Please correct me if I'm wrong.

    Regards,

    E.
    Last edited by Borisoff; 09-12-2006, 10:06 AM.

  • #2
    That entire depends on you and how you define contexts. If you like working on work stuff at home then that would be fine. I personally don't. So I have @home, @office, @homecomputer, etc. I don't have an @officecomputer because for me that is redundant as I spend 80% time at the office at my desk.

    Set up your contexts so that you are only seeing the types of actions you want to be working on in that situation.

    Another example, I don't have an @calls list. Unlike DA, I don't have blocks of time where I am making lots of phone calls. Mostly that is a function of me not being on the road much and I am frequently talking face to face with people at my work. So my call list is rather short so I just include those on my @agendas. Think about how you work and what contexts work best for you.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Borisoff
      Please correct me if I'm wrong. GTD assumes that there's no line between home and work related Next Actions. That means that if you have a work-project-related Next Action that you can do @computer (i.e. put new prices into existing price list) and you find yourself with a spare minute without any other priority actions except for that on your lists at your house after dinner with your family then you should do it at home? Is it right? Then it looks like the line between home and work dissappears? Is it really Ok to do my job related tasks while at home???
      If the resources are available and you don't have anything better to do, why not?

      Now, I would question whether updating a price list should ever be a higher priority than spending time with your family, but that's a personal decision, outside of GTD.

      Let's turn it around, though. Suppose your daughter is away at a sleepover and your wife is out with the girls. You can vegetate in front of the TV, or update the price list. And if you update the price list now, maybe you'll have time for a nice relaxed breakfast with your family tomorrow morning. In these circumstances, blurring the line might not be such a bad idea. Again, it's a personal decision. GTD just gives you the tools you need to make it.

      Katherine

      Comment


      • #4
        Eugene,

        I posted this on the other forum, but thought I would post here to for the benefit of others. I don't think that the intent of the list is to tell you what you should do, rather, it lets you know what your options are when you're in a given context.

        So yes, in your example "update price list" may be an option for you if you find yourself with spare time and at your computer w/no other NA's... But it may or may not be what you should be doing. The system delegates that decision to you.

        Jim

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by jkgrossi
          The system delegates that decision to you.
          Jim, maybe to ease the desigion it's reasonable to use time maps? So you know when to move work-related NAs and when the rest? Anyway all of us has formal or informal time map, i.e. work hours...

          E.

          Comment


          • #6
            One of the major advantages I found from GTD was that it enables you to get distasteful thoughts about things like "work" out of your head when you're not at work! (But only if the work and home systems are kept separate.)

            Comment


            • #7
              Work versus Home

              Originally posted by Borisoff
              Then it looks like the line between home and work dissappears? Is it really Ok to do my job related tasks while at home?
              Most of my job related tasks I do were they are supposed to be done: at the hospital were I work, either at my office, someone else's office or somewhere at the hospital lot (context @work). Most of my private tasks I do at the village were my family and I live : in the house that we own, in the garden, shopping at the supermarket, political meetings with a circle of acquaintances (context @home).

              Of course I read and write work related files or texts or emails at home sometimes and make private phone calls when I'm at the office, but I don't see this issue as a "line between home and work" but more a matter of rules that can be temporary overridden , if necessary.

              Rainer
              Last edited by Rainer Burmeister; 09-13-2006, 03:32 AM. Reason: just for fun!

              Comment


              • #8
                I made a very deliberate decision when I started this job (16 years ago last week!) not to do work at home unless there really was no other way to get it done. I'd had far too many years of work ttrying to take over my home life and my health had suffered.

                It turned out to be an excellent decision, although much frowned upon by some of my colleauges at the time. I will stay at work late if necessary to complete a task, but the only work things that get done at home are reading very urgent documents, finishing a lecture I'm about to give the next day, and reading professional journals if I'm in the mood. Oh, and the occasional INcoming phone call on work matters.

                Ruth

                Comment


                • #9
                  Leave work at work.

                  Originally posted by RuthMcT
                  I made a very deliberate decision ... not to do work at home ... Ruth
                  I totally agree with you. Each day when I am leaving my office I am also leaving all the work issues, problems and successes in the drawers of my desk and in the memory of my computer. I can focus on my family, fitness (windsurfing, tennis, running etc.), personal business blog and reading.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I've noticed over the years that the folks who have no home\work distinction seem to be largely people who's profession do not tie them to a desk - sales, consulting, etc. I am bound to my desk at work, so I only have two work categories, @Work and @Projects-Work. Work occasionally slips over to home, but that is either production support, which is not a planned action; or I've set a block of time to catch up, in which case I can review the @Work actions.

                    The biggest thing I remember from the GTD seminar is context. David stresses that your action lists must be in the proper context so that when you're at your computer you can perform any of the actions on your @Computer list. If every time you review @Computer you have to further analyze which actions can be done at home and which at work, you need two lists.

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                    • #11
                      As far as I got from posts David makes no division between work and home so you can do both at any time. It means I can learn Spanish or Play with my daughter at work if I feel that's more important then work-related tasks?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Borisoff
                        It means I can learn Spanish or Play with my daughter at work if I feel that's more important then work-related tasks?
                        You have my support on that, most bosses may disagree. But since David is self employed, it is the right system for him.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Borisoff
                          As far as I got from posts David makes no division between work and home so you can do both at any time. It means I can learn Spanish or Play with my daughter at work if I feel that's more important then work-related tasks?
                          Sure.

                          Of course, that's implicitly a decision that learning Spanish and playing with your daughter are more important than keeping your job. But if you really think that's true, go for it. GTD will support whatever actions you decide to take.

                          As someone else pointed out, GTD is a tool for keeping track of your options so that you can make informed decisions. It is not meant to make the decisions for you.

                          Katherine

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                          • #14
                            Ok, that's fine. I can learn Spanish at my office Why not. But how can I make sure that I do a constant progress with the same Spanish. If I use Time Map then I plan that I would have 2 two-hour lessons per week. In GTD model I could suddenly have 6 because I forgot I had 5 already that week

                            PS I don't want to use any software for keeping track. How I can do that in paper?

                            E.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Borisoff
                              As far as I got from posts David makes no division between work and home so you can do both at any time. It means I can learn Spanish or Play with my daughter at work if I feel that's more important then work-related tasks?
                              I think that this is a misunderstanding of what David Allen is saying.

                              Prior to the advent of the capitalist market system, there was usually no clear division between work and home. When I lived on a farm, work and home were the same. But in contemporary society, most people who earn a wage or salary--telecommuters excepted--go to a place called "work" which is different from the place called "home".

                              With the advent of cell phones and Blackberries, the line is becoming more blurred. But the line still exists. It's OK for me to walk around my apartment in my underwear; it's not OK for me to walk around the office in my underwear.

                              I don't think that David Allen is being paid $50,000 a pop to counsel CEOs to start walking around the office in their underwear. (I'd be happy to counsel them to do that but I am afraid no one would pay me.) In most places of work there is a rather clear demarcation between appropriate and inappropriate activity. As far as I can tell, David is not telling Fortune 500 CEOs to eliminate the distinction between appropriate and inappropriate activity.

                              What David does say is that, if you can, you should have one trusted system, not two. If I need to go to the office on Saturday, I want to have one calendar, so I can see what personal commitments I have planned Saturday. When I do my weekly review, I open up one system that contains all my NAs and projects--personal and work-related. I do not read David as advising me to tear down the wall between home and work; I do read him as telling me to create one trusted system of lists which contains all my commitments.


                              In fact, the whole reason David invented "contexts" was so that we could have one trusted system that is divided into parts based on what activities are appropriate and possible in different places. "Home" is one context in my system and "office" is a separate context. David encourages me to have one system because I have one mind (this claim that we each have one mind is controversial but I will, for the purposes of this post, take it as given). The trusted system is the tool I use for getting commitments out of mind. So, if I am at work and an idea about home pops into my mind, I put it into my trusted system and get back to doing my office-appropriate work.

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