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  • Still working on Weekly Review

    Does anyone have any suggestions about getting into Weekly Reviews in a way that makes it stick? This has become more difficult to pull off than I imagined! I need some help here. I thought I had it down and I continue to get interrupted and what I do actually do ends up being piecemeal...different times of the week and is not particularly complete. Suggestions?

  • #2
    I've had it where I started most of the weekly review and the remainder of the review tasks were put into NAs and then they would never really get done. It is so frustrating to know that your weekly review is not done. I really try to avoid having an unfinished weekly review. A few things that have helped me:

    1. Performing a mini daily review, whereby I only process my various inboxes, my outbox (I try to process my outbox at least every 48 hours), quickly review my project list and my NAs by context. Then when I get to my weekly review, it goes quicker, since I seem to have less to process and a better overview of my projects and NAs.

    2. Schedule your weekly review when you will not get disturbed. I will take care of this on Sunday nights and tell people "I have to get ready for the week". Now this may not be the best time for you or anyone else, but it works for me. Then I start the week very differently. If there is a family event or other such thing on Sunday night - gee, can't it be planned on a Friday or Saturday - I have to find another time for this.

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    • #3
      I would agree with sdann's approach. I have Friday from 12-2 blocked off over lunch to do my review. You'll remember that David recommends the review be done when people are still around so that you can wrap up loose ends with them before the day is out. Works for me, but may not work for everyone. Friday is a popular day where people like to schedule lunches, so sometimes it's hard to stick to it, but it takes discipline right? Eventually, people will know that it's a time that you simply can't be interrupted during and they will stop asking.

      One thing that is vital is to have a weekly review checklist that you go through. I've printed several off so that when weekly review time comes, I pull it out and go through each thing one by one. I think this is one of those excercises that will go more quickly once you have done it several times. The first time I did I was at the 2 hour mark and still not finished with it.

      I actually look forward to the weekly review though, which is a very good sign I think.

      Keep plugging away, read this forum and refer to the book or audio book every now and again for inspiration. I find that really helps keep me in it.

      Clark

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      • #4
        Agreed with others.

        I suggest that you try many different times for your weekly review. Sunday mornings, Saturday evenings, Monday morning, Friday afternoon...whatever. Might take several tries before you find something that works.

        Comment


        • #5
          Set aside time. I do it on Sunday afternoon while my teacher partner is plannig her week; we agree not to interrupt each other.

          Try to have your inbasket mostly processed before you sit down to Weekly Review. If I've let it pile up, I can spend an hour processing before I get to my actual review. (If I have lots of time that day, that's okay.)

          Identify some music that you play every time you do Weekly Review. If you do this a few times, the music itself will cue you to the right mood/motivation. Everybody has their own tastes; I like music without words that moves along briskly without jarring.

          If you need to, give yourself a prize when you've done the whole review.

          Do Mi

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Cluby1 View Post

            One thing that is vital for me is to have a weekly review checklist that you go through.
            I definitely need the weekly review checklist too. Its vital. Mine even has descriptive words from the book. I included those initially so that I know what each step exactly entails, but I've kept them in there for reference. For example:
            Process Your Notes - Review any "Journal/Notes" types of entries, meeting notes, and miscellaneous notes scribbled on notebook paper. Decide and enter action items, projects, waiting-fors, etc. as appropriate.
            Review Project (and Larger Outcome) Lists - Evaluate status of projects, goals and outcomes, one by one, ensuring at least one current action item on each.

            Comment


            • #7
              Weekly Review issues

              I have a reminder to do my weekly review on Thursdays. Sometimes I get to it earlier and sometimes later. I score myself on +/- days from Thurs target and use that as a reference for ongoing improvement. It's a game and I don't get down if I miss it by a couple of days.

              I still spend way too much time on the review. That's doesn't get me down either as it seems like it's worth it but I can't help but think I'm doing something wrong. I spent 3 hours just on upcoming calendar items yesterday. I couldn't believe the landmines I was finding. Doesn't repel me from weekly review but does cause me to question how off-the-GtD-mark I am. Everything I've been hearing and reading seems to argue for about an hour.

              I also don't do an entire WR each week. I always process my inbox (electronic and paper) down to zero and I pick one of the following: full project review or calendar or creative. I rotate those three to compliment my review.

              Michael

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              • #8
                Michael, can you give us some examples of what's taking you three hours just on calendar items? Maybe we can troubleshoot this.

                Do Mi

                Originally posted by tiomikel View Post
                I
                I still spend way too much time on the review. That's doesn't get me down either as it seems like it's worth it but I can't help but think I'm doing something wrong. I spent 3 hours just on upcoming calendar items yesterday. I couldn't believe the landmines I was finding. Doesn't repel me from weekly review but does cause me to question how off-the-GtD-mark I am. Everything I've been hearing and reading seems to argue for about an hour.

                Comment


                • #9
                  What took me so long with calendar

                  Originally posted by DStaub11 View Post
                  Michael, can you give us some examples of what's taking you three hours just on calendar items? Maybe we can troubleshoot this.

                  Do Mi
                  I decided to go out a month and clicked through my palm day by day. I'm very good at keeping my hard landscape clean and current so there are only appointments/meetings. Sometimes I would run across a meeting and decide I had to do some work to prepare for that meeting. I would enter that into my next actions or if multi-step; create a project with at least one next action.

                  Occasionally I found something I wanted to communicate something immediately (and less than 2 minutes work). I saw that a guest was flying into town that we were hosting at our education center but I wouldn't be back in town to greet her. So I emailed her and a colleague asking the colleague to be the point of contact.

                  All in all, there were 27 meetings, two trips out of town(3day and 2day), and one visitor to host. It's hard me to believe I took three hours on this and maybe I'm forgetting other things I did like run to the copier, but I'm pretty sure I stayed focused.

                  Thanks for any tips.
                  Michael

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                  • #10
                    I find that of all the GTD system the "weekly review" is the hardest part to crack.

                    I find that of all the GTD system the "weekly review" is the hardest part to crack. I found myself procrastinating on it for a long time cause I knew it was a tough one. Yesterday I think I made some progress, but not exactly with the "weekly review" or did I ?

                    I decided to re-write and re-define (again!) my projects as completed outcomes, that's tough enough on some projects. Then I focused on just one of them and found that I made great progress in laying out the basic plan of a project that's been dinging my bell for months! This took up most of my day but for the project it is successful proggress, for the weekly review well it did not get finished. Now I have this same situation for most my other projects which is why the "weekly review" kind sends my brain numb!

                    Now should I crack on with the project that I hjave made progress on or look at the next project on my list and do the same for that?

                    This whole system sounds great, and what I have applied so far makes a hell of a difference to "what I get done" but making this "weekly review" part actually work is challenging to say the least.

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                    • #11
                      You have to think during the Weekly Review.

                      As David Allen says Weekly Review is the only time during the week when you are thinking what to do (which widgets to crank) - so it is the most demanding nad important task. Then, when you've decided what you should do, cranking widgets is a piece of cake.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        David also says block out 1 to two hours to do a weekly review!

                        David also says block out 1 to two hours to do a weekly review!

                        There is no mention of the initial, first time "weekly review" unless I missed something!

                        There is no way I could complete my weekley review in that time. Most of my projects need lots of basic planning as did the one yesterday. I could spend a week or more doing my weekly review! That's why I have been putting it off for so long, and feeling stressed over it! Should I complete my weekly review so that all my projects are planned out with next actions? I sure would sleep better

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                        • #13
                          In my opinion, project planning should not be part of the weekly review - it's actually a work item (task), so the weekly review should identify the planning process as a task to be either scheduled or placed on the appropriate context list.

                          To be clear - the review is to organize the work to be done, and I suspect the basic planning you refer to is doing the actual work. Or am I off base?

                          Best,

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by br4978 View Post
                            In my opinion, project planning should not be part of the weekly review - it's actually a work item (task), so the weekly review should identify the planning process as a task to be either scheduled or placed on the appropriate context list.

                            To be clear - the review is to organize the work to be done, and I suspect the basic planning you refer to is doing the actual work. Or am I off base?

                            Best,
                            My thoughts exactly. Planning a project in greater depth is an NA in and of itself. I'd move that to the NA lists, and move forward on your review. I also find that once I've done a complete review, sometimes planning is a little easier as I have a more up-to-date/complete mental picture of what context (non-GTD) that I'm working in.

                            Cheers,

                            Adam

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by br4978 View Post
                              In my opinion, project planning should not be part of the weekly review - it's actually a work item (task), so the weekly review should identify the planning process as a task to be either scheduled or placed on the appropriate context list.
                              I fully agree. I am continuously planning projects throughout the week. I could never do all that only during the weekly review. I would never get to the weekly review if I had create and organize my projects during that time. I suggest you create NAs when you want to set-up, fine-tune or brainstorm a projects, or even create an NA just to decide if you should make a project active.
                              Last edited by sdann; 11-21-2007, 08:28 AM. Reason: fixed quote (I hope)

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