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Time spent on GTD overhead, integration of GTD with other approaches to life

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  • Time spent on GTD overhead, integration of GTD with other approaches to life

    I'm 3/4 through the book and curious to hear other's thoughts on two points not addressed (so far):

    1) How much time do people typically spend on GTD overhead? I often feel like I spend an inordinate % of time reviewing lists and calender...what is a reasonable range? 1% of work time? 10%? 30%?
    How does this depend on job description? Someone who's job consisted entirely of management might conceivably spend 100% of thier time on GTD overhead, their own lists and those of others?

    I probably spend 15-20% of my total work time managing lists and reference in my existing, pre-GTD honed system.



    2) Really following GTD from 50k feet to runway (or the other way around) seems functionally like a life philosophy...a secular religion of sorts.

    It seems as though it fits best with certain personality types, occupations, and cultures It fits me pretty well, for instance, but I know plenty other folks who I can't see going far down this road.

    I'd like to hear more about:

    =Who does GTD fit? How to adapt? What use is it, if any, to spacy, artistic people? Non-linear thinkers?

    =What other approaches to life does it dovetail with, and how? When do you set aside your lists and just steer by gut? (What are limitations of GTD for all folks? LOVE and GTD thread http://www.davidco.com/forum/showthread.php?t=5723 had me in stitches)

    Yours,

    Art

  • #2
    Be careful to distinguish between GTD overhead and time that you'd have to spend anyway. Adding an NA to your lists is GTD time, but processing the Inbox item that created the NA is not.

    I spend less than 15-30 minutes a day reviewing my lists, plus an hour or two at the Weekly Review. Processing my inboxes takes as much as another two hours, depending on how much stuff has come in and how strictly I follow the two-minute rule. I think it's normal to spend more than this if you are setting up a new system, but things should settle down quickly.

    If you're spending 20% of your work time on GTD overhead, it might be time to take a hard look at your system and figure out why it's so inefficient.

    Katherine

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    • #3
      1) I have no idea really. I do know I get more done using GTD, daily I spend no more time that without on overhead, but I do spend more time doing weekly review and planning.

      2) It not a philosophy, it is a tool for managing you life no matter which philosophy or religion you subscribe to.


      No, GTD is not for everyone but anyone can benifit from it. A spacy, artistic person can use it to be not so spacy on things like appointments, for example. Those who benefit from it most are those types that adapt it to their situation and stick to it.

      [/QUOTE]

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      • #4
        8 % GTD-Time

        There are about 10 hours per day that I’m actually doing something productive, or constructive, or creative stuff (8 hours at work and 4 hours at home and elsewhere) on Mondays through Fridays and on Weekends about 10 hours. That sums up to about 60 hours per week.

        Five daily reviews (0.5 hour each) and two weekly reviews (about 1.5 hour at work and 1 hour at home) sum up to 5 hours of „GTD-time“.

        This gives 5 / 60 = 8 %.

        Rainer
        Last edited by Rainer Burmeister; 09-22-2006, 03:57 AM.

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        • #5
          Philosophy? What Philosophy?

          Originally posted by oasis
          2) Really following GTD from 50k feet to runway (or the other way around) seems functionally like a life philosophy...a secular religion of sorts.
          Going from 50k feet to runway never was a problem to me, this is just the way an introverted, intuitive person (INTJ) like me lives. My problem was D.A.'s bottom up approach. Solved this problem by defining a gtd-project as what I call a "work package" : a series of maximum six actions that belong to a goal which is part of a real project (20 k level).

          So, when I work, I don't go bottom up nor top down , but mentally scan my memory for that several dozens of work packages that are usually part of my work, and then decide which work package would be the right lever to start with that real project at hand. And then "filling in the blanks" with real names, dates, locations, devices etc gives my the actions that need to get done.

          When confronted with a problem I usually don't ask "What's the next action?" , but I ask "What's the right leverage here?" and after I've found a feasible pattern of work the actions follow quite naturally or instinctively.

          Rainer

          (Don't try this at home, if you don't have a strong introverted intuition.)
          Last edited by Rainer Burmeister; 09-21-2006, 07:39 AM.

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          • #6
            Interesting . . .

            Just found it interesting, noticed you were also an INTJ. Made me start to wonder what the breakdown is for users of GTD, considering INTJ is among the rarer types in the general population.

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            • #7
              My approach to this is even more simple.

              I use to be in de office 12-14 hours plus the house chores, and working on the weekends.

              I am in the office 8-9 hours, go to the gym, has loose more than 90 pound, do not work on the weekends...

              I do not care if I spend 50% of my time in GTD, no matter how much time I spend now I get 8-9 hours @work, 3-4 hours @home and around 30 @weekend!

              Simply priceless.

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              • #8
                here.

                I am also an INTJ.

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                • #9
                  Interesting ...

                  Originally posted by AdamMiller81
                  Just found it interesting, noticed you were also an INTJ. Made me start to wonder what the breakdown is for users of GTD, considering INTJ is among the rarer types in the general population.
                  If you mean the breakdown from 50 k level to runway for an INTJ, well, that would be an interesting thing to know. Okay, I'll give it some thought on the weekend, and hopefully will post a suggestion here next week.

                  Rainer

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Rainer Burmeister
                    If you mean the breakdown from 50 k level to runway for an INTJ, well, that would be an interesting thing to know. Okay, I'll give it some thought on the weekend, and hopefully will post a suggestion here next week.

                    Rainer
                    It wasn't originally, it was more of an question of seeing if the proportional representation of GTD people was any different from that of the general population, but actually, your idea sounds very interesting, so I look forward to seeing what you come up with!!!

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                    • #11
                      This might not be helpful (it might to someone, so I'll throw it out there anyway), but my answer to question #1 is "as much as I need to in order for me to get comfortable with all that I'm currently doing, need to be doing and not doing."

                      I heard David say something recently that really hit home for me regarding the amount of time you're spending on "system overhead" specifically realted to the weekly review. It went something like, "if you're not doing weekly reviews, you're doing weekly reviews all the time... just not very well".

                      Jim
                      Last edited by jkgrossi; 09-21-2006, 11:38 AM.

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                      • #12
                        Another INTJ here.

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                        • #13
                          I can't remember exactly what I am except I was obviously an "I" while the other three were virtually flat/neutral between the two types. A co-worker saw my score and said, "Good heavens! How do you get anything done?"

                          I've secretly blamed my lack of productivity on it ever since.

                          C

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                          • #14
                            I am INTJ with J being very neutral and feedbacks for me from my supervisors have been that I was not good with follow throughs and working on multiple projects.

                            GTD has solved both of these issues to a great extent for me.

                            THX
                            Sri

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                            • #15
                              INTJ-specific Problems

                              There seem to be two INTJ-specific problems at work:

                              01) INTJs sometimes confuse their personal interests with their commitments (commitment in terms of "emotionally engaged self-obligation") and spend too much time on features that contribute very little to the goals of their commitments (e.g. perfectionism).

                              02) INTJs sometimes have problems to distinguish between thinking/knowledge and action and thus loose track of time (e.g. missing deadlines).

                              My experience is that in both cases GTD can be used to get clear about your commitments and actions.

                              Rainer
                              Last edited by Rainer Burmeister; 09-22-2006, 03:58 AM.

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