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New GTDer | Processing Help

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  • New GTDer | Processing Help

    So I am processing my inbox, and I am trying to stick to the discipline of taking one thing at a time as I come to it, instead of skipping over things. I have come to an item that I am having a hard time deciding what to do about. typically, I would just throw this back on the pile and move on to something else, and basically procrastinate doing something with this item and just let it stay in my inbox.

    I want to change.

    I need to take some action on this, but not right now. I guess it could be a project, but I am concerned that if I put it on a project list its going to get lost.

    I dont really feel like it merits its own project folder...maybe a 'Deferred' folder to hold other stuff like this?

  • #2
    Put it in a Tickler File?

    Put it in a Tickler File? A week ahead?

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    • #3
      the key is your statement that if you put it in a projects list you fear it will get lost. What I found is a key aspect to making GTD work is the term ďtrusted sysetmĒ. If you donít have one, you wonít trust your inputs to it and to have it tell you what needs to be done when. So THAT is where I would start if I were you. You need to have a system that gives you a project list where youíre not worried about losing it.

      Ďdeferredí is just another inbox, itís a way to cop out of doing genuine processing, in my opinion.

      So my basic recommendations would be, first, develop a trusted system.

      Second, look at this item and decide what outcome you need to get with respect to it. If itís a single step, itís just an action. If more than one, itís probably a project. At that point, figure out what is the VERY next thing you need to do with respect to that item, then put it in the appropriate place.

      Thatís my two cents.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by forceDotMom View Post
        I have come to an item that I am having a hard time deciding what to do about. typically, I would just throw this back on the pile and move on to something else, and basically procrastinate doing something with this item and just let it stay in my inbox.

        I want to change.
        Try the natural planning model. What do you think is the outcome if it's wildly successful? What if it's a dismal failure? How will you feel ? See if that helps. When I'vee hit those it can take along time to get the answer to "Is this actionable?" correct but it does get easier with practice.

        Comment


        • #5
          This Merits 30-50,000ft Perspective

          Once you've processed everything else out of your inbox, download or find David Allen's 30-50,000ft questions. Go through these and use them as a way to capture new projects and tasks. This will give more specificity to the item in your inbox which will result in more traction on the outcome you really want to see become a reality.

          Hope that helps.

          Comment


          • #6
            Trusted system.

            Originally posted by Conejo23 View Post
            the key is your statement that if you put it in a projects list you fear it will get lost.
            Yes, I agree. That's the main problem.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by forceDotMom View Post
              So I am processing my inbox, and I am trying to stick to the discipline of taking one thing at a time as I come to it, instead of skipping over things. I have come to an item that I am having a hard time deciding what to do about. typically, I would just throw this back on the pile and move on to something else, and basically procrastinate doing something with this item and just let it stay in my inbox.

              I want to change.
              Good for you! That's a key skill to master if you're going to rid your life of "stuff".

              Originally posted by forceDotMom View Post
              I need to take some action on this, but not right now. I guess it could be a project, but I am concerned that if I put it on a project list its going to get lost.
              If it's really not something for you to act on right now, it's a "someday/maybe" type of commitment. A tickler file is perfect for paper articles that fit this category. Decide when you want to be reminded about it again and drop it in the appropriate folder. This is great for bills, tickets to events like concerts, etc.

              Now, on the other hand, if it's something that you might want to act on but you're not sure if you want to do it or should do it, you have what David Allen refers to as a "look into" or "R & D" project. The outcome is a decision whether or not to move forward with, incubate, or jettison the potential project that piece of paper represents. The actions will focus on gathering data that you need to make a decision you can feel good about.

              In summary, it's okay to decide not to decide if you have a decide not to decide system, but it's critical to be honest with yourself about why you're not ready to make that decision. If the reason is because you lack data, then you have a "look into" project. If it's because the time isn't right to act, you have a "someday/maybe" commitment.

              Originally posted by forceDotMom View Post
              I dont really feel like it merits its own project folder...maybe a 'Deferred' folder to hold other stuff like this?
              No, don't do that. That's just a fancy name for a "hunhhh" stack!

              One last piece of advice. If you really want to trust your project list, you must build in the habit of a weekly review once you get your system off the ground.

              Best of luck to you and welcome to GTD!

              -Luke

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