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  • A GTD System for a Teen?

    Hi. My name is Dustin, and I recently turned 18 years old and I am currently a student in high school and will go to college soon after graduation. I have been into GTD for about a year now. I've never actually implemented the system but my knowledge of the concept of GTD has helped me boost my productivity and improve my self as an individual. I, now, actually want to implement a GTD system for myself. But I need some help from already experienced users of GTD. I know their are different methods of applying GTD to your life rather it is based word-by-word on what the GTD god, David Allen, himself said or whether you've taken the initial concept and played around with it to fit your needs as a human being. I know I am going to be one of those people who plays around with the GTD concept and comes up with something on my own. As you can imagine, I have very limited resources being 18 and all and still in high school. I need some help from you guys to help me form a system that isn't expensive but is very effective as well as fluent. Inexpensive, effective, and fluent! I like the way one individual is making use of GTD in this article: Organization 101. I like the way he uses a pocket-sized ubiquitous capture device (his little mead notebook) and writes down his thoughts and ideas and then plans them out later with a slightly bigger notebook. I've come to find out that no place near me sells pocket-sized ubiquitous capture devices!!! OMG! I'm sure if I look harder they will appear, but geez. My Wal-mart doesn't even have any. Anyways, I've come to enjoy a 9.5x6in, 80 sheets medium-sized notebook that I use to spread my ideas out. I need a ubiquitous capture device that I can fit in my pocket still! Any ideas? Getting back on to the topic, I really need your help to find out a GTD system that will work for me and is efficient, cheap, and fluent!

    Your Help is Greatly Appreciated,
    Dustin!

  • #2
    I would start setting up a filing system. I assume manila folders are easy to buy and not so expensive. For informations how to set up the filing system you could search this forum.

    Originally posted by dropdeaddustin View Post
    I've come to find out that no place near me sells pocket-sized ubiquitous capture devices!!!
    For a first cheap UCD look at: http://www.43folders.com/2004/09/03/...he-hipster-pda

    Yours
    Alexander

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    • #3
      Originally posted by dropdeaddustin View Post
      I've come to find out that no place near me sells pocket-sized ubiquitous capture devices!!! OMG! I'm sure if I look harder they will appear, but geez. My Wal-mart doesn't even have any.
      Keep looking. Those little spiral-topped Mead notebooks are sold everywhere. You are right -- if you look harder, they will appear. Try Wal-Mart again, or Kmart, or whatever equivalent is in your neighborhood. Most supermarkets have a small stationery/school supplies section, and you are likely to find little notebooks there. Or try 3x5 file cards held together by a rubber band or binder clip (the basic hipster pda), as suggested by Alexander.

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      • #4
        I personally use a small pack of 3x5" unlined index cards as my ubiquitous capture device. Works great for me, and broadly available.

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        • #5
          more on teen and GTD

          Those 1/2 size 80 page note books are hard indeed to find at certain times of the year when the major retail stores are not selling school supplies; but you could try on-line and the major office big box stores.

          Now here is some help I need...I do a lot of work with teens who are academically oriented and I cannot get them to actually 1)write in their planners consistently and 2) look in their planners and 3)discuss anything in outcome terms. In jr hi they are required to use planners and must show them to their homeroom teachers but in h.s. and college they are on their on. Even when they miss major things of interest. to themselves They will not even engage in a discussion about UCD. Any thoughts on how to get them to do this. The Socratic method has not worked!

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          • #6
            let them own the idea. UCD is your idea, old pop. way uncool. and not practical. imho you should let them discover how awesome it is to have an UCD, even if they don't know they are partially doing GTD. let them have the awesome idea and then support them.

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            • #7
              For smart teens, high school isn't demanding enough. They can (or think they can) keep everything in their heads, so a planner just weighs them down. I know I didn't begin to develop decent time management habits until I got to college.

              So don't push them to use planners, and above all don't issue a "standard" planner that everyone must use. Create a challenging and interesting situation, and then be there with the tools they need to handle it.

              Katherine

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              • #8
                I felt exactly that way when I tried out a few different planners. Buying an actual premade planner will not work out to the satisfaction of most in my opinion. It know it didn't for me. Think about why people use a planner in the first place. To jot down important events for certain dates. I know I don't need a full-on planner because not a lot goes on for the average eighteen year old. We don't manage our dentist or doctor appointments and such. Our mothers have that job. We jot down test dates, job interviews, the date a movie comes out in theatre, concert dates, etc - basic teen stuff. Older and more socially experienced people have dentist and doctor appointments to worry about and potentially job meetings, when a bill is due to be paid - important adult stuff. These adults can as well combine this important adult stuff with some "teen stuff." I know my mom loves Prince and schedules to go see him concert every time he plays somewhere near or in Alabama. She is also part of a cult, uh eh group and they usually have "liquid luncheons" every wednesday. I will admit that I know teens in my high school who have a planner and are extremely socially active and has a lot of her planner filled out with social events and test dates as well as her personal events. This is not the average teenager, in my opinion. But there are teens out there like that. A planner is not what a teenager needs in my opinion. I think a UCT and an online or desktop calendar works fine. Jot down some significant dates in your life and go and when you process your UCT, place these significant events on the corresponding dates in your Calendar of choice. Refer back to this once a day when you are at your house (which is at least once a day for most teens, but some teens don't go there house for 2 days for various reasons.)

                -dustin

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                • #9
                  Not sure I completely agree

                  Dustin said: Think about why people use a planner in the first place. To jot down important events for certain dates. I know I don't need a full-on planner because not a lot goes on for the average eighteen year old. We don't manage our dentist or doctor appointments and such. Our mothers have that job. We jot down test dates, job interviews, the date a movie comes out in theatre, concert dates, etc - basic teen stuff. Older and more socially experienced people have dentist and doctor appointments to worry about and potentially job meetings, when a bill is due to be paid - important adult stuff.

                  Dustin, you sound like a neat guy. I just want to make one point, though, and that is that you will be managing your own life completely very soon...having a calendar, although you may not use it that much, will sure help you develop the habit of looking at it, writing stuff down, etc. before you really have to be solely responsible for where you go and when. Might be fun for you to make your own, though, with graphics and stuff that appeals to you. I know many school districts around the country start in middle school with planners for their students every year, but I know I would have been considered the ultimate nerd if I'd carried one around :-} I think it's great that you are at least thinking in terms of GTD...just might want to consider actually acting on some of the recommendations you've read about. I think you'll find it's a good investment of your time and you'll have less stress when you start college. Cutting down on college stress will help you enjoy what will be the VERY BEST time of your life!! Good luck!

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                  • #10
                    Sent you a PM, Dustin.

                    Originally posted by dropdeaddustin View Post
                    I've come to find out that no place near me sells pocket-sized ubiquitous capture devices!!! OMG! I'm sure if I look harder they will appear, but geez. My Wal-mart doesn't even have any.
                    Dustin, I sent you a PM. I have some pocket sized notebooks I collected and am not using. I'll gift them to you if interested. Just PM your mailing address.

                    Enjoy the implementation process! Don't waste too much time tweaking the system though

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