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  • Notes Capturing

    Good day to everyone,
    I love the GTD principles.
    And I am trying to implement the GTD into my my day-to-day task, but ... I am struggling.
    So far I have mastered a principle of writing everything down. But now I have a ton of sticky notes, 3 notebooks with various ideas and tasks to accomplish.
    I have tried use OneNote 2007 for note keeping, but this resulted in huge OneNote 2007 notebooks with buch of idea notes, which are hard to review.
    I keep the reference paper file of things to Read/Review.
    As result I am completely overwhelmed with this paper and electronic well "not-yet-useful" baggage. Can someone advice me on what to do?
    I am self-employed web developer and have constantly at least 3 major projects I am participating at, and everything becomes a mess, that I forget to complete a task...
    Can someone give an advice on two things (1) how to create a practice of avoiding the paper piles? (2) How to construct the review process, so it would be helpful and not frustrating as it is for me? Takes me at least 2 hours to go through all the notes.
    Thank you very much.

  • #2
    I suggest that you re-read Getting Things Done book. But if you don't have enough time and desire to do that I suggest to start with the following:

    1. Create empty list in electronic or paper format: Projects List, SM List, @Waiting For list, @Action List, Calendar, Reference shelf
    2. Schedule 2 hours in your Calendar for Processing your backlog and notes
    3. Use Processing diagram from the GTD book (take one note only, process it)
    4. Repeate Point 3 till you finish processing.

    Regards,
    Eugene.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thank you for your advice

      Thank you.
      Well, I do those actions except the Review part.
      The deal is 2 hours is simply not enough, but I guess that time is not the issue here.
      I guess I will go with your advice and re-read the book, maybe I will understand something differently this time.
      Any advices would be greatly appreciated.
      Cheers.

      Comment


      • #4
        OK, you've Captured. That's great. Now you need to Process.

        Put all those notes into separate Projects. Create folders for 'em. You should be able to get all those notes into various folders for various projects.

        I may be wrong, but it sounds to me like every time you want to move forward on a Project, you have to look through ALL your notes for ALL your Projects. Once you have all your materials split up properly, when it's time to work on one Project, you'll have comparatively little material to look through.

        Does that make sense?

        Comment


        • #5
          I try to use notebooks for lists and general meeting notes and pads of paper for project notes that will eventualy get filed in a project folder or binder. I thought I read in the book something about having as many capture devices as you need, but not too many.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by lalipas View Post
            I am self-employed web developer and have constantly at least 3 major projects I am participating at,
            Are these 10,000-ft projects or 20,000-ft areas of focus?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by lalipas View Post
              Thank you.
              Well, I do those actions except the Review part.
              The deal is 2 hours is simply not enough, but I guess that time is not the issue here.
              The thing is you need all the hours anyway. It's just that know with the formalized process of GTD and the Weekly Review you realize how much work it really is. Reviewing your inventory of commitments is part of your work, regarless if you do it with GTD or another way.

              Comment


              • #8
                start filing in an a-z to file.

                I findit helpful to have two drawers, one for reference and one for active project support. Anything you don't need now but want to hold onto get's filed into reference. Anything you need for a project goes in project support in folder with a project name.

                Make sure you have a project on your project list for each project folder and make sure you have an NA(next action) on an apporpriate context list for each project.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Process, Baby, Process!

                  I'm a "computer person" also, and for me what others have reflected on here is what works....

                  > You * have * to Process. For me, it's every day.

                  > As a part of the processing, putting stuff into the Reference File, or the Project's file, and identifying the Next Action (if there is one -- it's part of the processing) is how I stay ahead of the game and truly keep "getting things done."

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thank you

                    Thank you very much guys for all of your input.

                    After reading your comments it "stroke" me that I don't have either 20000 feet or 30000 feet system. Everything is pilled up into on "Do it within next week", no wonder I am so overwhelmed and frustrated. (Can do everything at once)

                    Especially I like the idea of separate notebooks. However, I will have to find good software solution for this, since I try to run paperless office. OneNote and EverNote are the best for this, but both have their down sides.
                    1) OneNote - uncomfortable for reviewing note by note ( when you have a 200 of them, it's a pain to scroll though them by pressing "Alt+pgDn" each time)
                    2) EverNote - no such feature as printing a PDF into the system for later distribution.
                    ------
                    I probably will stay with OneNote, since "Printing" option is essential here. but...
                    Anyway... Once again thank you for all of your input.
                    Will greatly appreciate any other opinions and wise words for a person with "1000 projects"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Do not capture what you can't eat!

                      Do not capture what you can't eat! Try the information diet. You do not have to be the Wikipedia.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Sounds to me like your Processing step might need some refining. When you process, you evaluate each item and decide whether or not it gets your attention now (plus some other stuff, but that's the essence).

                        Some stuff gets filed away for reference: this can include ideas and material for a given project, so you keep all of your Project A materials together, for example. Some stuff creates a single Next Action, some stuff goes on your Someday/Maybe list because you can't or don't want to work on it now.

                        And as The David says, it's easy to implement GTD: it's just a bunch of lists. You'll have an Active Projects list, which simply contains the names of all your works-in-progress; a Someday/Maybe list, which contains all the ideas, potential projects, and harebrained schemes that you're not working on; a Waiting For list, which holds the names of projects where you're waiting for someone else to do something before you can continue working on those projects; and one or more Next Action (also known as Context) lists. Plus optionals like the Stuff To Read list.

                        That means that when you review, you just need to cast your eye down the Active Projects list, and make sure that you've got at least one Next Action for each AP, and maybe once a month look at your Someday/Maybe list to see if there's anything that can be moved from there into Active Projects, or dropped altogether.

                        Just lists, that's all. You don't need to review all the project support materials every time, and you wouldn't want to: that probably deserves its own segment of project planning time.

                        One of the benefits here is learning how much work you're actually letting yourself in for. Another is becoming aware of project slippage - often this happens because of inadequately-defined NAs, because we're more likely to do something simple and one-step than something complicated.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by unstuffed View Post
                          You don't need to review all the project support materials every time, and you wouldn't want to: that probably deserves its own segment of project planning time.
                          A quarterly or semi-annual review of project support is usually more then enough. Reference can generally be reviewed annually. I believe the David calls it "Dumpster Day".

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Thank you

                            Thank you to everyone who tool their time in answering my query.
                            God bless.

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