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new skills do not fit project and na?

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  • new skills do not fit project and na?

    If I want to learn a new skill -- say, the ability to write legibly -- my project might be 'complete transition to easy and legible writing' -- my next actions would be a series of drills repeated daily.

    Something that you repeat daily for a period of time really seems like clutter on an NA list. Perhaps it belongs somewhere else?

    And when do you declare that you 'have' the new skill? Do you have to define a 'level' and once you reach that, you can decide whether to continue or not? Is there a known 'form' for setting levels?

    Perhaps projects and next actions are simply not the places for improving skills and abilities, or for acquiring new habits?

    Maybe they are goals? Where do they fit into GTD?

    Thanks,
    Arc

  • #2
    I do find that it's helpful to have a clear target in mind: "read Japanese newspaper without consulting dictionary," "earn second degree black belt by *date*," "improve handwriting so that *person* can read it," "qualify for Boston Marathon by *date,*" and so forth. Once you have that, you can treat it as any other project, with intermediate steps, next actions, and so forth. Or you can just block out practice time on your calendar, with a log to make sure you actually do it. (I mostly do the latter, using Sciral Consistency and a paper log for tracking.)

    Katherine

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    • #3
      Originally posted by ArcCaster View Post
      Perhaps projects and next actions are simply not the places for improving skills and abilities, or for acquiring new habits?

      Maybe they are goals? Where do they fit into GTD?
      I have been learning new habits continuously, particularly as I've been implementing a full GTD system - not my half-@@@ system - in the last almost half a year now. The best way for me to get into a new habit is to have a daily checklist. On it, and this is no joke, I actually have "check tickler", because this is a new thing I implemented and I found myself forgetting the files. I now use it for most new habits, as well as to make certain I do my workout at least 3 times a week.

      There are 8 columns next to the actions, one for each day, and a sum column where I add up the totals for those things that need totaling (example: workout total is 3 or three checkmarks). I then change this daily checklist during my weekly review, adding or removing habits I feel I need to remember.

      PS The only reason workout is there is because I really need to get back into a regular routine. I also don't adhere too well to any appointments I make with myself, so I prefer the "openness" of this.

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      • #4
        Thanks -- I just looked up Sciral Consistency, and it sounds like you both gave me the same answer -- one manually, one with special software. I'll give it a try.

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        • #5
          Well, I am 12 hours into using Sciral Consistency -- what a nice neat intuitive tool! It is perfect for capturing those 'ahha -- I want to do that regularly for a while' thoughts that come so often once you embark on something like GTD. I think it should be part of the 'coming up to speed' recommendations. Thanks Katherine.
          Arc

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          • #6
            Some tools

            Originally posted by ArcCaster View Post
            If I want to learn a new skill -- say, the ability to write legibly -- my project might be 'complete transition to easy and legible writing' -- my next actions would be a series of drills repeated daily.

            Something that you repeat daily for a period of time really seems like clutter on an NA list. Perhaps it belongs somewhere else?
            Some online tools similar in purpose to Sciral Consistency:

            - Seinfeld Chain: http://dontbreakthechain.com, http://smarterfitter.com/chain, http://makingthechain.com
            - Joe's Goals: http://www.joesgoals.com
            - What's your habit? http://www.whatsyourhabit.com
            - Habit Calendar: http://everydaysystems.com/habitcal
            - loopdo: http://loopdo.com
            - Habit Starter: http://www.habitstarter.com
            - Hassle Me: http://www.hassleme.co.uk

            Printable PDF:
            - Mark Shead's Habit List: http://www.productivity501.com/habit-list/308/

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by sdann View Post
              I have been learning new habits continuously, particularly as I've been implementing a full GTD system - not my half-@@@ system - in the last almost half a year now. The best way for me to get into a new habit is to have a daily checklist. On it, and this is no joke, I actually have "check tickler", because this is a new thing I implemented and I found myself forgetting the files. I now use it for most new habits, as well as to make certain I do my workout at least 3 times a week.

              There are 8 columns next to the actions, one for each day, and a sum column where I add up the totals for those things that need totaling (example: workout total is 3 or three checkmarks). I then change this daily checklist during my weekly review, adding or removing habits I feel I need to remember.

              PS The only reason workout is there is because I really need to get back into a regular routine. I also don't adhere too well to any appointments I make with myself, so I prefer the "openness" of this.
              I started using this exact same method about 3 weeks ago after reading a book called 'Vital Factors' - which basically talked about setting clear targets for a week in a transparent kind of way and then using an accountability tool to check against progress. It's really working effectively for me in setting up different habits in several different areas of my life. And yes, things like check tickler are on there for me too in terms of my GTD implementation, along with get inbox to zero once during the day.

              Paul

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