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Entering duplicate tasks/projects.

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  • Entering duplicate tasks/projects.

    Hi all,

    I'm a bit befuddled right now about how to handle this situation. Here's what's going on:
    1. Let's say I'm standing in line for a movie and a random thought pops into my mind about refilling my car's tires.
    2. I enter in the task on my Blackberry Storm using the NextAction! program and use the context @Errand and the project "Service Car".
    3. So now the task is out of my head and in my trusted system. After the movie I go to dinner with my wife, minigolfing with friends, and back home. After stepping out of the car, I notice my tires are a little deflated...so I pull out my blackberry and punch in a task to refill the tire...

    I know this seems like a very lame example, but there really have been times when I've been so busy that I forgot I entered a task for something I already thought about. I've even entered in projects twice, and didn't catch them until I did my weekly review .

    Does anyone else have this issue? If so, how have you been able to combat it? I think I might be better off NOT entering the task when I think about it, rather, I should just use the memo program on my phone to capture the thought and then process it later. I have not done that yet because it feels like I'm adding an extra step. What do you all think?

    Thanks in advance!
    Mike

  • #2
    Originally posted by Mischka View Post
    but there really have been times when I've been so busy that I forgot I entered a task for something I already thought about. I've even entered in projects twice, and didn't catch them until I did my weekly review
    Mike, I have double entered NA's and projects on a regular basis. I don't see this as a problem, as duplicates all get handled during the weekly review.

    I figure, better twice than not at all

    - Don

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    • #3
      Yes, I do this all the time and it is annoying!

      But I don't really see a way around it...if you remember you already entered it, good! If not, just scribble it out or erase it later.

      If it's something that keeps jumping out at you (like the tires every time you get in the car), it's probably affecting you or bothering you a lot, so you might want to make it a higher priority to get done.

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      • #4
        That's a good point Don, thank you. To be honest, my greatest fear in these duplicate tasks is doing the task twice.

        And thank you Cojo, I agree that I probably need to zero in on it when I go over the NA list.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Mischka View Post
          Does anyone else have this issue? If so, how have you been able to combat it? I think I might be better off NOT entering the task when I think about it, rather, I should just use the memo program on my phone to capture the thought and then process it later.
          Yes I do that on occasion and it usually means 2 things to me.

          1. That item or project is very important to me even if it seems trivial.
          2. I am not trusting my system yet (I do more of this when I've been trying out different methods of corralling my GTD stuff)

          I have fewer of those now that I always just capture the notes in one place and process later when I can really think about whether I already added this project or N/A. But I process stuff daily and don't wait until the weekly review to get it all processed, I'd be totally overwhelmed if I did that.

          My capture tool is a pen and paper notepad and my project list and N/A lists are all in LifeBalance on my Treo. So by keeping capture on paper I am forced to think about it when I process it an enter it into my LifeBalance system and that helps me catch duplicates.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Oogiem View Post
            I am not trusting my system yet
            I think it's exactly the opposite One trusts the system so much that one need not even bother remembering whether an item has been entered! If you don't recall it right away, just enter it...

            Mischka, whether you record it as an action or "stuff" depends upon how obvious the "stuff" is (apart from whether you have the access to your full system like you or just the collecting tool). During the intense thought process during processing, the next action might turn out to be slightly or entirely different than the initial thought about it!

            Regards,
            Abhay

            Comment


            • #7
              I agree that it's better to duplicate than forget, but in the example you gave you are collecting, processing, and organizing all at once. Be careful with that. I recommend you just collect first, then process and organize later (Abhay alludes to that in his post).

              You might be able to get away with it on such a simple thing like the example you gave, but other times, particularly when dealing with things that have some hidden variables, you're likely to add "stuff" or an action you can't really take now onto your action lists rather than the true next action you need to take. You just can't always do the thinking required to know what to organize when you're in on the go or "in the war zone" as David calls it.

              If I were you I'd just collect the idea on a scrap of paper (which gets into my in-basket) or note on my PDA "Tires-Air" and process it later. If I make the note twice, I'll catch it while processing and not enter it twice. Also, when you really think about it, you might also define an action to check tire for puncture.
              Last edited by ellobogrande; 02-22-2009, 06:25 AM. Reason: Grammar

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Mischka View Post
                That's a good point Don, thank you. To be honest, my greatest fear in these duplicate tasks is doing the task twice.
                Doing the task twice could be a problem, but if it doesn't take too much time, it's not too much wasted time.

                I'd rather have booked two hotel rooms (never happened), than no hotel room (um, yeah, that's happened).

                - Don

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                • #9
                  I sometimes find that I've recorded a Project or Next Action twice between Weekly Reviews but I clean it up during the review. Oftentimes it's a reminder to me that this thing is important to me or that I've not completely clarified it to the point of being able to record and forget it. A little more thought usually puts it to rest in my mind.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mischka View Post
                    Hi all,


                    Does anyone else have this issue? If so, how have you been able to combat it?
                    I'd think you have only to add in the agenda -where, when - if possible, depending by it's importance

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                    • #11
                      Thanks again all.

                      I did some thinking and determined that the source of my problem is indeed trying to collect and process at the same time. That's pretty much the root of virtually all my organizational problems.

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