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  • #46
    The thing about GTD I see being useful with the Covey quadrants is that things that are in Quadrant 3 and 4 have a way of blowing up and then needing to be in quadrant 1. It's freeing to say "Oh these things aren't important" but the unimportant details have a bad habit of going haywire if you don't do anything about them, and then they become urgent and important.

    Comment


    • #47
      Originally posted by mcogilvie View Post
      I disagree. Not everything we need to do is important:[
      I think we're just using different definitions of "need" and "important". As I see it, if I need to do something, then it's important, and vice versa. I also think in terms of degrees of importance.

      if everything is important, nothing is.
      Acknowledged. Similarly, if we need to do everything, then we don't need to do anything?

      An example of quadrant 3: I may need to pick up something from the grocery store, and choose to run an errand to the nearby office supply store.
      I'm sorry -- I don't understand your example. Maybe you mean that stuff from the grocery store is important and stuff from the office supply store isn't, or maybe you mean something else. Food is definitely important. Stuff from the office supply store can also be important -- it can sometimes contribute significantly to our productivity. If a supply will be important when we run out of it, then (as I see it) it's also equally important when we decide to buy some way ahead of time so we won't run out of it: that's one of the things I learned from Covey. As I remember it, the book "Time Management for Unmanageable People" by Anne McGee-Cooper [http://books.google.ca/books?id=5BQi...w&redir_esc=y] recommends going once a month to an office supply store, browsing around and picking up stuff you like even if you're not sure yet how you'll use it. If doing that increases your productivity, then I call it important. Maybe you reserve the word "important" for only what I would call the few most important things.

      Quadrant 4: there are many examples from life within an organization where something is not urgent and not important but still has to be done, e.g., reports nobody reads.
      If writing a report nobody reads is really not important, then just say no and
      don't write it! However, writing a report nobody reads can be important for
      a number of reasons: (a) because of legal obligations your organization has;
      (b) to maintain fiable records that probably won't be needed but might turn
      out to be crucial; (c) for personal integrity (e.g. because you promised to or
      because you're paid to); (d) to maintain good working relationships; (e) to earn
      money you and your family live on; (f) to demonstrate your skills and reliability;
      etc. If you feel that you have to write it, then I would say it's
      important. Other solutions might be to make the report more interesting so
      people will read it; to arrange things so the legal or other obligation is removed;
      or to have the report automatically generated by a computer program.
      I don't consider delegating it to someone else a good solution in general.

      While the whole quadrant thing can be useful in prioritizing other people's requests for your time, I think the gtd approach is more effective and better for my mental health.
      I think I see what you mean: using the Covey system could lead to thinking "I'm doing this even though I probably shouldn't because it's in the wrong quadrant," which is negative self-talk, whereas GTD might lead to thinking something like "I'm getting some big and little things done and that's good," which is positive self-talk.

      I use both: that is, when sorting by priority in the GTD system, I use concepts from Covey as part of my method of deciding on priorities. I don't like thinking of the quadrants as all-or-nothing, but as degrees of importance and degrees of urgency.
      As I see it, if someone feels they need to do something even though it's in quadrant 3 or 4, that probably they've mislabelled it and it's actually in quadrant 1 or 2 for them.
      Also, I can never remember the numbering for the quadrants. For these reasons, I
      think it doesn't tend to lead to the negative self-talk for me.

      Comment


      • #48
        Originally posted by cwoodgold View Post
        I'm sorry -- I don't understand your example. Maybe you mean that stuff from the grocery store is important and stuff from the office supply store isn't, or maybe you mean something else. Food is definitely important. Stuff from the office supply store can also be important -- it can sometimes contribute significantly to our productivity. If a supply will be important when we run out of it, then (as I see it) it's also equally important when we decide to buy some way ahead of time so we won't run out of it: that's one of the things I learned from Covey. As I remember it, the book "Time Management for Unmanageable People" by Anne McGee-Cooper [http://books.google.ca/books?id=5BQi...w&redir_esc=y] recommends going once a month to an office supply store, browsing around and picking up stuff you like even if you're not sure yet how you'll use it. If doing that increases your productivity, then I call it important. Maybe you reserve the word "important" for only what I would call the few most important things.



        If writing a report nobody reads is really not important, then just say no and
        don't write it! However, writing a report nobody reads can be important for
        a number of reasons: (a) because of legal obligations your organization has;
        (b) to maintain fiable records that probably won't be needed but might turn
        out to be crucial; (c) for personal integrity (e.g. because you promised to or
        because you're paid to); (d) to maintain good working relationships; (e) to earn
        money you and your family live on; (f) to demonstrate your skills and reliability;
        etc. If you feel that you have to write it, then I would say it's
        important. Other solutions might be to make the report more interesting so
        people will read it; to arrange things so the legal or other obligation is removed;
        or to have the report automatically generated by a computer program.
        I don't consider delegating it to someone else a good solution in general.
        It seems to me you have put everything into quadrants I and II then.
        I would have a hard time rating monthly browsing at my local office
        supply store as important. I used to do that pretty regularly, but
        gtd has pretty much made that unnecessary.

        Comment


        • #49
          Originally posted by mcogilvie View Post
          It seems to me you have put everything into quadrants I and II then.
          I would have a hard time rating monthly browsing at my local office
          supply store as important. I used to do that pretty regularly, but
          gtd has pretty much made that unnecessary.
          I think we mean pretty much the same thing, but are just defining words like "important" differently.

          Even a leader of a country has to do things like eat, sleep, exercise, brush teeth, tie shoelaces, etc.

          Comment

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